NCAAB Sunday February 5th Northwestern at Wisconsin Betting Preview
Low Scoring Game Expected in Madison
There’s a lot on the line in Sunday’s Northwestern at Wisconsin betting matchup, mostly conference tournament jockeying as nine teams are within two wins of each other in the Big Ten. The Badgers (13-8) are also trying to avoid being swept by Northwestern in the season series for the first time in 27 years.
The Wildcats (15-7) have had a nice turnaround this year including their 66-63 win against Wisconsin on January 23rd as -2.5 favorites. Northwestern has dropped two consecutive games though and by a 16.5 ppg average.
Why Northwestern Can Cover +3.5 Points
The Wildcats need a bounce back, as there are whispers they are showing their true selves the last two games with an 86-70 loss at Iowa followed by a 68-51 defeat against Michigan this past week. Northwestern has still beaten Michigan State and Indiana on the road in conference play, so a win at the Kohl Center is not out of the equation.
Northwestern will have the two best scorers in Sunday’s game powered by the back court duo of Boo Buie (16.2 ppg) and Chase Audige (15.5 ppg). Buie had 20 and Audige 16 in the first meeting with Wisconsin and Buie has 20+ in five of his last six games.
One major reason why the Wildcats can cover the +3.5 in Northwestern at Wisconsin betting is because this game is expected to be very low scoring with an O/U of just 124.5, the second lowest of any tilt on the Sunday slate. The Badgers are the second lowest scoring team in the Big 10, with Northwestern posting the third best defense in the conference.
Why Wisconsin Can Cover -3.5
We might be seeing the Badgers get into form for the last month of the season coming off their 65-60 win at Ohio State this week as +7.5 road underdogs. The Buckeyes are struggling with losses in 7 of their last 8, but any away victory in the Big Ten is impressive.
Wisconsin ranks 24th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency, and nobody outside of Buie and Audige scored in double digits for Northwestern in the first meeting between these two teams. The Badgers had also won seven straight in the head to head series prior to the loss last month.
The Badgers’ offense will be the biggest question as to whether the -3.5 can cover on Sunday. There is some potential there with Steven Crowl having a 21/11 line last month vs. Penn State and Chucky Hepburn going for 15+ in two straight. Jordan Davis also had a season 15 points in the first meeting with Northwestern.
Free Northwestern at Wisconsin Betting Pick
75% of the betting public likes Wisconsin to cover -3.5 on Sunday, but their offense really could be a liability here. The Wildcats have looked bad the last two games, but Iowa and Michigan have a better scoring attack than the Badgers.
That’s a lot of public betting for the line to not move especially far. The Wildcats are 4-2 on the road this season and Wisconsin has only covered the number in one of their last dozen games.
Free Pick: Northwestern +3.5