The Wisconsin Badgers (9-10, 2-4 Big 10) will attempt to continue a five-game home winning streak when they challenge the Illinois Fighting Illini (10-9, 0-6 Big 10) at Kohl Center. The Over/Under (O/U) for the game opened at 136.5 points with Wisconsin set as a 4.5-point favorite. Action gets underway at 9 p.m. ET on Friday, January 19, 2018.
Illinois Fighting Illini at Wisconsin Badgers Odds Preview
The Fighting Illini lost a tough one against the Nebraska Cornhuskers in their last contest, 64-63. Illinois Michael Finke recorded 16 points and 10 rebounds in the contest. Nebraska did a great job of making free throws (17-23; 73.9 percent). Illinois, meanwhile, had an offensive rebounding percentage of 43.9 (above their season average of 37.4).
The last time the Badgers played, they were topped by the No. 3 Purdue Boilermakers, 78-50. Ethan Happ was Wisconsin’s leading scorer with 15 points on 7-for-16 shooting. Purdue forced the Badgers into a turnover percentage of 27.3 (above their season average of 15.5). Wisconsin, meanwhile, did a terrific job of converting from the charity stripe (10-12; 83.3 percent).
This has potential to be a sloppy game for the offense of Wisconsin. Wisconsin ranks 137th in the NCAA in ball protection (turnover percentage of 18.4 percent), while the gambling defense of Illinois forces the fifth-most turnovers in the NCAA (24.6 percent). Contrasting paces will be on display in this showdown. The up-tempo Fighting Illini rank 46th in possessions per game, while the slower-paced Badgers rank 343rd.
Games including these teams tend to go under the projected point total. Illinois games have finished under 66.7 percent of the time, while Wisconsin games have finished under 55.6 percent of the time. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Fighting Illini have a significant advantage. They are 10-9 SU and 8-7 ATS, while the Badgers are 9-10 SU and 6-12 ATS.
This is the first time these teams will clash this year. The Badgers won the lone game played against each other last season, 57-43. Wisconsin had a much better effective field goal percentage (0.466 vs. 0.319). Illinois, meanwhile, had a better free throw rate (0.103 vs. 0.034).
Illinois Fighting Illini vs. Wisconsin Badgers Odds Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Illinois, ATS Winner – Illinois, O/U – Under
- The Badgers rank 126th in blocks per game (3.2) while the Fighting Illini rank 145th in blocks allowed per game (4.4).
- Illinois allows the 42nd-fewest assists per game (11.6) while Wisconsin ranks 51st (11.8).
- Illinois is 4-4 ATS on the road, while Wisconsin is 5-5 ATS at home.
- The total has gone over in 7 of the Badgers 10 home games, while 6 of the Fighting Illini’s 8 road games have gone under.
- Illinois ranks 87th in rebounds per game (37.3) while Wisconsin ranks 254th (31.7).
- The Fighting Illini rank 40th in steals per game (7.7) while the Badgers rank 162nd (5.3).
- Wisconsin is fourth in the NCAA with 15.4 three pointers allowed per game while Illinois is 31st with 18.5 three pointers allowed per game.
- Wisconsin is 2-3 ATS with 5 unders in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Illinois is 2-2 ATS with 2 overs and 2 unders.
- The Badgers average margin of victory in their last five games has been 0.6, down from 2.4 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Fighting Illini have scored an average of 71.6 points per game (7.4 below their season average) and allowed an average of 76.4 points per game (4.5 above their season average).