The No. 17 Michigan Wolverines (22-7, 11-5 Big 10) will travel to Bryce Jordan Center to go head-to-head against the Penn State Nittany Lions (19-10, 9-7 Big 10) in their home finale. Penn State is a 3-point favorite on the opening line, while the game’s Over/Under (O/U) opened at 135 points. Action gets underway at 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday, February 21, 2018.
Michigan Wolverines vs. Penn State Nittany Lions ATS Preview
The Wolverines were victorious over the No. 8 Ohio State Buckeyes in their last matchup, 74-62. With 12 points and seven rebounds, Moritz Wagner had a good outing for Michigan. Michigan played a nearly flawless game. They had an absurd free throw rate of 0.327 (above their season average of 0.176) and a turnover percentage of 10.1 (better than their season average of 12.6). For those same stats, Ohio State was 0.155 and 17.4, respectively.
In the Nittany Lions’ last matchup, they were beaten by the No. 6 Purdue Boilermakers, 76-73. Tony Carr was Penn State’s high scorer with 19 points on 8-for-22 shooting. Purdue had a free throw rate of 0.321 (above their season average of 0.263). Penn State, on the other hand, had an offensive rebounding percentage of 36.7 (above their season average of 31.3).
Baskets could be hard to come by in this showdown between two of the nation’s premier defenses. Penn State ranks 21st in defensive efficiency (96.3) and Michigan is 24th (96.5).
Both of these teams have a tendency to go under the O/U total. Games involving Michigan have gone under 57.1 percent of the time, while 56.0 percent of Penn State games have finished under. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Wolverines have a substantial advantage. They are 22-7 SU and 17-11 ATS, while the Nittany Lions are 19-10 SU and 14-10-1 ATS.
Wagner has really been playing well over the last five games for Michigan, averaging 15.6 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game.
This will be the first matchup of the year between these two teams, after the Wolverines won the sole contest last season, 72-69. The Wolverines’ turnover percentage was their biggest advantage over the Nittany Lions. Michigan had a rate of 7.1, while Penn State posted a mark of 19.3.
Michigan Wolverines at Penn State Nittany Lions ATS Prediction
Free College Basketball Pick: SU Winner – Penn State, ATS Winner – Michigan, O/U – Under
The Nittany Lions rank 37th in steals per game (7.6) while the Wolverines rank 121st (6.3).
Michigan is 15th in the nation with 10.5 assists allowed per game while Penn State is 42nd with 11.4 assists allowed per game.
On the road, Michigan is 8-5 ATS with 7 overs and 6 unders.
Penn State is 8-5 ATS at home with 9 unders and 4 overs.
Michigan ranks 55th in three pointers attempted per game (25.0) while Penn State ranks 247th (19.0).
The Nittany Lions rank 12th in blocks per game (5.4) while the Wolverines rank 147th (3.1).
Penn State ranks 126th in rebounds per game (35.9) while Michigan ranks 239th (33.0).
Penn State is 4-1 ATS with 3 unders and 2 overs in their last five games.
Over their last five games, Michigan is 3-2 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
The Nittany Lions’ average margin of victory in their last five games has been 14.0, up from 9.7 for the season.
During their last five games, the Wolverines have scored an average of 71.8 points per game (2.2 below their season average) and allowed an average of 65.4 points per game (1.9 above their season average).