The No. 15 Ohio State Buckeyes (11-4, 5-4 Big Ten) take on the No. 10 Wisconsin Badgers (12-3, 6-2 Big Ten) in a Big Ten Conference showdown on Saturday afternoon. The matchup will be the only matchup between the nationally ranked conference foes this season.
Saturday afternoon’s tipoff is 4 pm ET inside the Kohl Center in Madison. WI. Wisconsin is a 4.5-point favorite against the Buckeyes, according to oddsmakers.
What to Know – Ohio State Buckeyes
Ohio State comes into the weekend having suffered their first home loss of the season on Tuesday to the Purdue Boilermakers, 67-65. The Buckeyes are on the road in four of their next six games, as they are 3-3 away from Columbus this season.
Ohio State averages 76.7 points per game behind 44.7% shooting from the floor. Ohio State surrenders 67.7 points per game for a +9.1 scoring margin and holds their opponents to 41.6-percent shooting.
Ohio State is led in scoring by guard Duane Johnson Jr., who averages 15.7 points per game for the Buckeyes. Johnson scored 21 points in the loss to the Boilermakers, his fifth 20+ game of the year.
Forward E.J. Liddell has scored in double figures in all but three games this season for 14.1 points per game average. Liddell boasts a 50% shooting mark from the floor connecting on 64-of-128 shots.
The Buckeyes are 8-6-1 against the spread this season, including a 6-3 mark in their last nine outings. OSU is just 2-6 in their last eight matchups against the Badgers.
What to Know – Wisconsin Badgers
Wisconsin has put together another solid season with just three losses on their record and sit one game out of first place in the conference standings. The Badgers have been particularly good at home, losing only once inside the Kohl Center this season.
The Badgers score 73.3 points per game while shooting 44.2% from the floor. Wisconsin is always one of the better defensive teams in the Big Ten, and that is no different this year, holding opponents to a conference-leading 61.4 per game average.
Guard D’Mitrik Trice paces Wisconsin scoring 14.8 points per game. Trice’s averages are elevated in conference play, where he averages 17.6 points.
Micah Potter has scored double digits in 12 of 15 games this season and ranks second on the team in scoring. The forward averages 12.2 points and leads the team in rebounding, securing 6.7 rebounds per game.
Wisconsin sports an 8-7 mark against the spread this season, with a 6-5 record on their home floor. The Badgers are 8-0 ATS in their last eight games played on Saturdays.
The Pick is In
The nationally televised Top 15 showdown should draw a large audience and give college basketball fans a classic Big Ten bout. Both teams are well-coached and have a veteran presence on their rosters.
The difference will be Wisconsin’s 26-2 record at home over the last two seasons, and while this won’t be a typical home game, expect the Badgers to take care of business on their home floor.
The Pick: Wisconsin -4.5