Northwestern Wildcats at No. 1 Michigan Wolverines
Wednesday, 1/30/12, 6:30 PM EST, TV: Big Ten Network
Opening Point Spread: Michigan -18
Current Betting Line: Michigan -18
Opening Total: 130
Current Total: 130
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Northwestern takes on the top-ranked team in the country for the 18th time in school history, as it looks to bounce back from a disappointing 64-49 setback to the Nebraska Cornhuskers as 1.5-point road favorites Saturday. The Wildcats definitely have a puncher’s chance in this one, as the last five games at the Crisler Center in this series have been decided by an average of 5.6 points. Northwestern is 4-1 ATS following a straight-up loss this year, which can’t be ignored when making your college basketball picks against the spread Wednesday night.
The Wildcats have two probable starters that average in double figures, with senior guard Reggie Hearn leading the way, averaging 14.0 points per game. Northwestern is averaging 64.2 points per game as a team, while holding a plus-two turnover margin. On the defensive end, the team is allowing just 61.5 points per game after allowing 68.2 a year ago. After leading the conference and finishing fifth nationally with an average of 9.0 3-point makes per game, the program is averaging 7.8 during the 2012-13 campaign.
Michigan has won three games in a row since suffering a 56-53 setback to the Ohio State Buckeyes on Jan. 13, as it comes off an impressive 74-60 win over the Illinois Fighting Illini as six-point road favorites. The Wolverines have won their last four meetings against the Wildcats, which includes a pair of overtime games in that stretch. The team is off to its best 20-game start in history, with Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. leading the way, combining to average 33.8 points per game. Michigan is 28-11-1 ATS in its last 40 conference games, which is something to consider when looking over the college basketball odds page.
The Wolverines are averaging 78.5 points per game, which currently ranks as the highest per-game average under a John Beilein led team. Michigan has also managed to win its games by an average of 19.3 points per game this season, which is the third-best point differential in the country. Consistency in scoring has been the key for this squad, averaging 37.6 points in the first half and 40.8 in the final 20 minutes.
Sports bettors will likely back the Wildcats due to their 4-1 ATS mark versus winning teams.
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