One of the better matchups on the Wednesday ACC/Big Ten Challenge docket is the Indiana at Florida State pick. The Hoosiers return four starters from last year’s team that won 80-64 in this same matchup in Bloomington as -1.5 favorites. IU is a +3 point underdog in the 2020 rematch though.
FSU has tons of questions, as they’ve only played one game this year; an 86-58 win over North Florida at home as -25.5 favorites. Indiana on the other hand participated in the Maui Invitational which was moved to Asheville, NC last week, going 2-1 with big wins over Providence and Stanford. The Hoosiers did suffer a 20+ point loss to then-ranked Texas however. Will the public still be pounding Indiana here?
Indiana Has Best Player on the Court
The Hoosiers getting points is very tempting in the Indiana at Florida State pick due mostly to the fact that Trayce Jackson-Davis is taking the floor for IU. The sophomore averaged 13.6 ppg last season, but has picked up his game to have a 26 and 31 point output so far this year.
Race Thompson has scored 15 and 22 points in games for the Hoosiers this season and Aljami Durham had 19 points in the win over Providence. That’s a lot of high end depth for Indiana up against a Florida State team that lost three players off last year’s team to the NBA.
What’s been most impressive about Indiana’s 3-1 start is that it’s come against some quality competition. The Hoosiers were just -2 favorites in the 79-58 win over Providence and were actually +1 underdogs in the 79-63 victory over Stanford to close out the Maui Invitational. Indiana did fall 44-66 to Texas as -2 favorites in that tournament, but the Hoosiers are still very battle tested vs. a team that has played just one game this year.
Florida State Still Has a Lot of Questions
Leonard Hamilton has built a great program in Tallahassee, finishing with fewer than 10 losses in three of the last four seasons. That being said, the Seminoles must replace Trent Forrest (Jazz), Patrick Williams (Bulls), and Devin Vassell (Spurs) from a team that went 26-5 a year ago.
Hamilton would love to have more than one game against North Florida under his belt coming into the matchup with Indiana. This is also a revenge matchup, as the Hoosiers knocked off #17 Florida State 80-64 last year behind a career high 30 points from Devonte Green. The win pushed the Hoosiers to 8-0 last year, but Green is off to the Greek basketball league.
There’s not much to take out of FSU’s season opening 28-point win over North Florida. MJ Walker did have 17 points, Balsa Koprivica chipped in 13 as well, but FSU was also just 7-24 (29%) from three point range against an inferior opponent. Indiana is holding opponents to 61.5 points/game against mostly quality teams, who are shooting just 31.8% from the floor vs. IU.
Free Indiana at Florida State Pick
Wednesday’s meeting seems like one to back Indiana in. Florida State will come into their own eventually this season, but it’s tough to have just your second game of the year against a solid defensive unit that has shaken off their rust in a high-quality tournament last week.
Indiana 71 – Florida State 65
Free Pick: Indiana +3