With less than a week to go until the 2022 Big Ten tournament begins, a big game will be taking place at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio, between the Michigan State Spartans and Ohio State Buckeyes. We will give a betting preview The Thursday night matchup will feature two very close teams in the standings, each with just two regular-season games to go, including this one.

Ohio State currently has the edge over Michigan State. The Buckeyes are 18-9 overall, 11-7 in conference play, and ranked 23rd in the nation right now. The Spartans aren’t far off, though, as they’re 19-10 overall and 10-8 against the conference. The only team between the two is Rutgers, who is coming off a huge buzzer-beater win over Indiana.

This game has huge Big Ten tournament implications for both teams, so whoever wins will certainly have an edge going in.

Game Preview

The Spartans and Buckeyes come into this game having yet to play each other this season.

Ohio State has taken down ranked opponents in No. 20 Illinois, No. 4 Duke, and No. 10 Wisconsin. Michigan State has also beaten three ranked opponents with wins against No. 8 Purdue, No. 10 Wisconsin, and No. 18 UConn. Two of those three wins against ranked opponents for the Spartans came on the road, something that’s been a struggle for both teams this season.

After a big win over No. 20 Illinois, Ohio State has dropped back to back against unranked opponents Maryland and Nebraska. Being the home team, Ohio State automatically has an advantage in this game as the Buckeyes are 12-2 at home against the Spartans’ 5-5 road record.

For Ohio State, junior forward E.J. Liddell runs the floor as he’s the team leader in average points (19.6), rebounds (7.7), blocks (2.6), and 2nd in 3 pointers made (38). Liddell is ranked the 4th best scorer in the conference.

On the Spartans’ side, the overall numbers are much less impressive. The team leader in average points is senior forward Gabe Brown with 11.4, and in average assists, it’s forward Marcus Bingham Jr. (5.8).

Interestingly, that gap in individual numbers actually has Michigan State with more total team points than Ohio State. However, Ohio State has more average points per game than the Spartans at 4th best in the Big Ten compared to Michigan State at 8th best.

On defense, the Buckeyes have been elite as they’ve allowed the 2nd least amount of points in the conference, with Michigan State ranked way below at 10th in that category.

Predictions

The numbers basically all favor the Buckeyes, but there’s more to this game than meets the eye. Michigan State took down Purdue while Ohio State fell to the Boilermakers, and while Ohio State has had the more successful season, Michigan State has had some sneaky bouts of success.

The moneyline for this game has Ohio State as the favorite at -270 and a 6 point spread in their favor as well. If you’re betting on this game, it’d be way too risky to take the Buckeyes on the moneyline, but the spread isn’t a bad bet.

At the same time, while Michigan State is definitely the underdog in this one, you’ll get much better value by taking them over Ohio State at +230.

Ohio State has dropped back-to-back winnable games against bottom conference dwellers, so they’re far from unbeatable, even at home.

The over/under stands at 138.5. Ohio State has averaged 74 points per game this season while Michigan State has averaged 72.1, so the numbers say to take the over, and it’s hard to disagree with that. This should be a relatively high-scoring and fast-paced game.

 


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