Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinals Free NCAA Basketball Picks

Willie Bee

Friday, March 11, 2016 1:28 PM UTC

Friday, Mar. 11, 2016 1:28 PM UTC

A couple of upsets highlighted Day 2 of the Big Ten Tournament, and we're checking the NCAA basketball odds to see if more are in store for the quarterfinal round.

They're my pick to win this event, and a team that I feel is a good bet to go all the way. Now we get to see if the Indiana Hoosiers can back up their regular season title and my money when they take the floor in Thursday's opener of the quarterfinals in the Big Ten Tournament.

The No. 1 seed Hoosiers will see their first action in Indianapolis with a noon (ET) tip-off against the No.8 Michigan Wolverines. ESPN will carry the contest with Bookmaker listing the Hoosiers -6½ with 146½ for the total.

Michigan (21-11 straight up, 15-15 against the spread) advanced with a 72-70 win overtime over Northwestern, but it was enough for the Wolverines to beat a -3 closing spread on the NCAA basketball odds. Missed free throws and the inability to block out on defensive rebounds cost those of us who played the 'under' in that contest.

In a crazy season like we just had, why not Indiana (25-6 SU, 17-14 ATS)? The Hoosiers certainly made up for a couple of close early losses to Wake Forest and UNLV by closing strong with four wins of five ranked teams in February, and they did that without star guard James Blackmon Jr. who was lost for the season just before the conference slate to a knee injury. Tom Crean's crew also missed Robert Johnson the final three games, the 6-4 soph questionable for this one due to a bum ankle.

Indiana beat Michigan 80-67 on the road as 2 point chalk in early-February, and this is one college basketball bettor who will get behind the Hoosiers again today.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Indiana -7.5
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker


'Huskers Surprise By Reaching Quarterfinals
No. 3 seed Maryland will end the quarters with something like a 9 PM (ET) tip on the Big Ten Network. The Terrapins are colliding with No. 11 Nebraska, BetOnline installing the Cornhuskers as 7½ point 'dogs with a total yet to be released.

Nebraska (16-17 SU, 16-12 ATS) pulled off one of two surprises in Thursday's round by upsetting Wisconsin, 70-58, catching the Badgers in a horrible shooting performance.

Maryland (24-7 SU, 13-15-2 ATS) was in contention for the regular season title in the Big Ten before dropping four if its final six games. Three of those defeats did come against some pretty fair opposition (Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana), two of them on the road, but the setback to Minnesota is inexplicable.

The Terrapins beat Nebraska in Lincoln, though the 70-65 final was not quite enough to cover a 5½ point spread. I'm liking the 'under' for my free NCAA basketball pick with the total in the upper-130s once it comes out.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Under 137
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle


Spartans Seek 5th-Straight Win Over Buckeyes
The No. 4 Purdue Boilermakers and No. 12 Illinois Fighting Illini clash in an ESPN telecast that follows the Hoosiers-Wolverines matchup. Purdue is 11 point chalk at 5Dimes with 139 for the scoreboard mark.

Purdue (24-7 SU, 15-12 ATS) reached the conference slate with only one loss in a neutral site affair vs. Butler. The Boilermakers did take down a couple of Big Ten contenders after that, including the Spartans and Terps, but found life away from West Lafayette a little rough (4-5 ATS in conference road games). Illinois (15-18 SU, 16-14-1 ATS) almost blew an 11-point lead vs. Iowa on Thursday before holding on for another upset in the conference tourney.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Illinois +10.5
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes


Completing our quarterfinal tour, old rivals meet for the third time this season when No. 2 Michigan State battles No. 7 Ohio State on BTN after the Terps and 'Huskers finish. The Spartans are 11 point favorites at BetOnline, the total still forthcoming.

Michigan State (26-5 SU, 21-9 ATS) is always a danger this time of year, and the Spartans get to the postseason on a good roll having won 10 of their last 11. Even better news for gamblers is Tom Izzo's team covered all 11 of those contests with eight of them going 'over' the totals. Ohio State (20-12 SU, 16-16 ATS) staved off elimination on Thursday by rallying for a 79-75 triumph over Penn State.

The Spartans have won four straight vs. OSU, beating the Buckeyes twice in the past few weeks with spread-beaters and 'over' winners. Purdue forgot about defense at Illinois in January, an 84-70 loss as 9½ point road chalk. My final free college basketball picks will be laying the points on MSU and taking Illinois plus the points.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Michigan State -12.5
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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