MICHIGAN STATE (-4) over Nebraska
Sparty already rolled over the Huskers in Lincoln, but this one is a little different. Ed Morrow is back for Nebraska and Eron Harris is now out for MSU. As poorly as Harris has played in Big Ten play, I don’t think it’s as big of a loss as it might seem. If anything, it probably means a little more PT for Alvin Ellis, who has found his shooting stroke lately. Admittedly, Harris would help defending Tai Webster. But even with Ed Morrow back, I don’t think the Huskers have enough to punish MSU’s lack of frontcourt depth and they still don’t have somebody to slow down Bridges. Above all else – as I’ve written about in the Big Ten blogs – MSU is just a much different team at home.
WILLIAM & MARY (-6.5) over Hofstra – 2u
Speaking of teams that are a lot better at home. The Tribe’s TWELVE (12) least efficient games on offense came on the road. Their NINE (9) most efficient games all came at home. And it’s not just a slight difference. It’s like .4 ppp better, which is a gulf. In their last five games at home (all in the CAA), they’ve had at least 1.24 ppp and won those games by an average of 20 points. And tonight they go against the 9th (out of 10) best defense in the league. I don’t feel like I need to even discuss the other end.
OHIO STATE (+7) over Wisconsin
It’s tough to trust this Buckeye team, but on the flip side, the Badgers have been very average away from the Kohl Center. I think OSU has a much better chance to defend Wisconsin than they did when the two teams met in Madison in January. Happ gets all the love in the league for his post defense, Reggie Lynch as well because of his block numbers, but Trevor Thompson is as good as anybody. He proved as much against Happ in game one. The place to beat OSU is shots on the perimeter and the Badgers haven’t shot it well for a month now, which is largely due to Koenig and Vitto Brown not shooting it well for a month. Say what you want about OSU, but nobody has come out of Value City with an easy win.
Season: 130-113-1 (53.5%)