Ohio State vs. Wisconsin: Big Ten Conference Basketball Inside the Kohl Center

No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes at No. 20 Wisconsin Badgers
Saturday, 2/4/12, 2:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Ohio State -2
Current Betting Line:  Ohio State -4
Opening Total:  114.5
Current Total:  116.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Ohio State Buckeyes haven't won inside the Kohl Center since 2000

Ohio State leads the nation in wins versus ranked opponents this year, capturing four victories in six tries in that situation.  The Buckeyes have five starters that are averaging double figures in games versus ranked foes.  Sophomore Jared Sullinger leads the way in that category by averaging 16.2 points per game.  The program will face a major challenge in playing inside the Kohl Center, failing to pick up a victory in the venue since  2000.  “That fact that we haven’t won there as a program, it does make you want to definitely win,” commented Buckeyes head coach Thad Matta.  Ohio State is 7-2 ATS versus Big Ten foes this season.

The Buckeyes rank second in conference action in averaging 77.3 points per game, while allowing 55.6 points a contest.  Senior guard William Buford is certainly a player to watch in this type of environment, sitting seventh on the school’s all-time list in scoring.  Ohio State captured an impressive win in the last meeting in this series, tallying a 93-65 victory as eight-point home favorites, hitting 14 of 15 tries from beyond the arc.

Wisconsin has won six straight games and will enter with its longest Big Ten win streak since capturing the conference title in 2007-08.  The Badgers continue to lead the country in allowing just 49.5 points per game, while ranking second in field-goal percentage defense, allowing opponents to shoot just 36.2 percent from the floor.  “We know what Ohio State has, we know what they bring,” stated Badgers head coach Bo Ryan.  Wisconsin is 2-0 ATS as an underdog this season.

The Badgers really take care of the basketball under Ryan’s guidance, leading the nation in turning the ball over just 8.7 times per game.  Senior point guard Jordan Taylor is a major part of that success, while he also leads the team in scoring 14.1 points per game.  Wisconsin has won nine straight games versus Ohio State in Madison, as the program has never lost under Ryan’s direction in this series inside Saturday’s venue.  The program is 26-9 versus ranked opponents when playing inside the Kohl Center.

Bettors will likely back the Badgers due to the home team being 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings, while the Buckeyes are 2-6 ATS when playing on Saturday.

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