Old-Fashioned Big Ten ‘Under’ When Wisconsin Meets Purdue: College Hoops Betting

Willie Bee

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 1:25 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018 1:25 PM UTC

With 13-straight wins in their back pocket, the Purdue Boilermakers are double-digit favorites on the NCAA basketball odds Tuesday night vs. Wisconsin.

My NCAAB Pick: Wisconsin-Purdue Under 136½
Best Betting Line Available (-105) at Heritage

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Is this the season Matt Painter and Purdue get over the hump and dance all the way into the Final Four for the first time in nearly 40 years? The Boilermakers are playing as well as anyone else right now, reflected in a No. 3 ranking by the conventional polls and No. 2 according to KenPom, and they look to move to 7-0 in the Big Ten standings tonight with a matchup against the Wisconsin Badgers.

A quick check of the NCAA basketball odds suggests Purdue will pick up its 14th-straight win in the 7 PM (ET) tip on ESPN from West Lafayette. Back home after spending last week on the road, the Boilermakers are favored by 15½, scoreboard bettors able to find a 136-137 range for their target.

Badgers Hit Floor For 1st Time In 7 Days
This is the third consecutive road battle for Greg Gard’s gang, and they dropped the previous two at Nebraska and Rutgers. A couple of long scoring droughts – one in each half – hurt the Badgers in the 63-59 loss a week ago in Lincoln, along with being outscored 21-4 at the charity stripe. Their 3-point shooting has been hit-or-miss all season, no pun intended; Wisconsin connected on 7-of-32 (22%) from beyond the arc in the setbacks to the Cornhuskers and Scarlet Knights after sinking 50% (15-30) in the two previous games.

Neither scoring nor shooting was a problem for Purdue last week in wins at Michigan and Minnesota. Bookmaker closed the Boilers -8½ against the Golden Gophers, and they made a mockery of that line with an 81-47 romp by netting 14-of-35 from long-range, 29-of-61 from the field overall. Painter’s crew is 15th in the country averaging 85 PPG, and seventh making 3’s (41.5%). Conference foes are scoring a little more than 62 per game against Purdue, right at the season average (62.7) which ranks 9th-best.

Rivalry Notes, Final Thoughts & A Free Pick
It’s Purdue with the lead in the 112-year-old rivalry, 107-70, but the series is even-steven the last 14 get-togethers. A big chunk of the Boilermakers’ advantage has been built right on this floor at Mackey Arena, Wisconsin only managing to win three times in 39 tries here, each of those victories coming in the last 13 seasons. Purdue owns a 3-game win streak in the rivalry, covering all three wins including last year’s lone meeting at this site, a 68-55 final as 2½ point chalk.

“Any team on any night” might have well been the theme for this season of college basketball. I don’t see the Badgers pulling off this upset, but the spread does seem a little high. Still, my free college basketball pick is going to ride the 4-game string of ‘unders’ both teams are on.
Season: 24-28-1 (-5.40)

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