Free NCAA Basketball Picks for Purdue vs. Michigan

Jeff Grant

Thursday, January 30, 2014 3:36 PM GMT

The Purdue Boilermakers have a chance of turning around their season Thursday, as they prepare to face off against the Michigan Wolverines. Find out where our trust handicapper believes the best value lies for our college basketball picks?

Let’s take a closer look at the college basketball lines for this Big Ten Conference matchup at the Crisler Center, with the opening tip scheduled for 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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Going in the wrong direction 

Purdue has dropped two in a row after putting together a three-game winning streak, as it looks to bounce back from a 72-58 setback to the Wisconsin Badgers as 4.5-point home underdogs last Saturday.

The Boilermakers have a chance to build a 2014 NCAA Tournament resume, as six of their last 11 games come against ranked foes with four of them coming on the road.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the program is 11-11 SU and 9-12-1 ATS in January, with no edge in terms of the betting total (11-11 Over/Under).

Tremendous stretch 

Michigan is coming off a stretch of winning three consecutive games against top-10 foes for the first time in school history, including a 80-75 victory over the Michigan State Spartans as five-point road underdogs last Saturday.

The Wolverines are scoring 82.6 points per game at home this season—outscoring opponents by an average of 24.6 points.

College basketball handicappers will find that the squad is 10-2 SU and 7-4 ATS as favorites during the 2013-14 campaign.

Deep roster

The Boilermakers are certainly capable of pulling off a upset in this spot, considering they play 11 roster members on a regular basis, while they’ve also compiled a 22-18 SU mark at this venue.

Purdue has held five straight foes to under 42 percent shooting from the field and has been equal or out-rebounded 10 straight opponents with a plus-6.9 margin during that span.

Playing great defense without fouling

The Wolverines lead the country in committing just 14.9 fouls per game, which may actually benefit the Boilermakers due to their 66.7 percent shooting from the charity stripe.

Four of the last five meetings in this series have gone OVER the betting total, while Michigan has gone above the number in four of seven home games this season.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Boilermakers for their college basketball picks, as they’ve gone 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games following a double-digit loss at home.

College Basketball Pick: Purdue Boilermakers +12