The Badgers (15-5) look to climb into sole possession of first place in the Big Ten with a win in the February 4th Purdue at Wisconsin betting matchup. UW got caught looking ahead to this showdown during the week, falling 80-72 at Nebraska on Thursday as -1 point road favorites.
Like Wisconsin, Purdue (20-2) also lost at Nebraska getting stomped 88-72 back on January 9th as -7.5 favorites. The Boilermakers have won six straight since then however most recently surviving Northwestern 105-96 on Wednesday night in OT. Purdue is a -2.5 favorite on the road Sunday afternoon but 61% of the public likes the Badgers.
Why Purdue Has Value at -2.5
The Boilermakers may have had to go to OT to beat Northwestern this week, but they still ended up getting a 9-point win. If they don’t lose outright like against Nebraska or in early December in the previous meeting with Northwestern, the Boilermakers are rarely in close games winning each of their last six by at least 8 points and four of them by at least 14.
Purdue figured something out against the Wildcats – throw the ball to 7’4″, 300 pound Zach Edey and either get a dunk or a foul called. The Boilermakers shot 46 foul shots on Wednesday compared to a measly 8 from Northwestern.
A bet on Purdue on Sunday is basically a wager on Edey to dominate – which is a pretty solid proposition. The reigning Player of the Year (and likely repeat in 2024) had 30 points and 15 rebounds vs. Northwestern and has 26+ points and 12+ rebounds in five of his last six games. Edey had 17 points and 19 rebounds in Purdue’s lone meeting with Wisconsin last season, a 63-61 win in Madison.
Why Wisconsin Has Value at +2.5
The Badgers have an easy strategy on Sunday – do not foul. The Boilermakers got 1/3 of their points from the free throw line against Northwestern this week and still had to go to overtime to get the win. Wisconsin did not allow a field goal over the final 5:42 last year against Purdue but the Boilermakers went 9/10 from the line to get the 63-61 win which didn’t cover the -3.5 point spread.
Wisconsin has a couple big bodies to throw at the 7’4″ Edey, led by 7’0″ Steven Crowl and 6’11” reserve Nolan Winter. The Badgers also boast the #4 scoring defense in the Big Ten (67.5 ppg) and held Purdue to 4-19 shooting from three point range in last year’s meeting.
An underrated aspect of Wisconsin’s game this year is their offense, which is 7th in efficiency according to the KenPom rankings. AJ Storr has back-to-back 28 point games and has at least 15 in five straight contests .
Free February 4th Purdue at Wisconsin Betting Pick
This game and this line feels like a Wisconsin outright win but it’s also hard to predict how the officials are going to handle Edey in the post. With two of the top seven most efficient offenses in the country in action with the possibility of a lot of extra points coming from the free throw line it should be fairly easy for both squads to get into the 70s in points.
Free Pick: Over 144.5