College Basketball Pick & Prediction for Wisconsin vs Indiana

College Basketball Pick & Prediction for Wisconsin vs Indiana article feature image

Photo by John Fisher/Getty Images. Pictured: Steven Crowl (Wisconsin)

Wisconsin vs Indiana Pick & Prediction

Tuesday, Feb. 27
7 p.m. ET
Wisconsin Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
-110o / -110u
Indiana Odds
Point SpreadTotal PointsMoneyline
-110o / -110u
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NCAAB odds here.

Wisconsin travels to Indiana to face the Hoosiers at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, February 27 on Peacock. Here's a college basketball pick and prediction for Wisconsin vs Indiana.

In the preseason, this matchup might’ve carried some serious intrigue. Wisconsin and Indiana were both expected to be NCAA tournament teams and were picked fifth and sixth, respectively, by the media in the Big Ten preseason poll.

While the Badgers have held up their end of the bargain, the Hoosiers have seemingly thrown in the towel on the season. Losers of four straight, IU is flirting with a bottom-three Big Ten finish and ranks outside the KenPom top 100 for the first time since 2010.

Even Assembly Hall hasn’t been able to save the Hoosiers, who are just 1-4 straight up at home since starting the conference season 3-0. Four straight non-covers suggest all hope is lost in Bloomington.

Wisconsin is a lock for the Big Dance, but it’s gone through a recent swoon as well. Though they got off the schneid a bit winning two of their last three contests, the Badgers haven’t covered in seven straight games.

And the road has been a house of horrors. Wisconsin hasn’t won a road game since January 23 and is just 2-8 against the spread in enemy territory.

The first meeting between these two was an efficiency bonanza, as both teams scored at will.

Can Wisconsin complete the sweep and shore up its Big Ten Tournament seed? Or will Indiana come back to life and find its pride down the stretch?

Check out our College Basketball Betting Hub for more NCAAB previews, predictions, news and analysis.

Wisconsin Badgers

Wisconsin’s methodical motion offense filled with flex cuts, back cuts, away screens and down screens sliced and diced the Hoosiers' defense in the first meeting. The Badgers poured in 1.40 points per possession, scoring at will in the post and finding space on the perimeter for clean looks from deep.

Given IU’s struggles defensively in conference play — due in part to an utter lack of awareness by players despite it being nearly March — offense should come easily once again.

The Badgers boast arguably the most proficient post-up offense in the country. Per Synergy, Wisconsin ranks in the 95th percentile in rate of plays ending in post-ups and in the 92nd percentile in points per possession via post-ups.

Big men Steven Crowl and Tyler Wahl have been efficiency mavens down on the block, and their passing ability makes them even more difficult to guard.

While IU’s post defense is arguably the strength of its unit, Wisconsin’s offensive action can stymy the Hoosiers. The array of screens Wisconsin throws at its opponents can rip to shreds a defense that lacks awareness and is constantly out of help position. The way the Badgers set up their post play isn’t as vanilla as many teams IU faces.

Wisconsin also has a little more dynamism in its backcourt this year with the addition of AJ Storr, who lit up the Hoosiers for 15 points in the first meeting. Storr gives Wisconsin a true creator off the bounce who can punish opponents in ball screens.

IU’s perimeter defense has been below average all season, and Storr should find success once again in Bloomington.

Indiana Hoosiers

Like the Badgers, Indiana’s best offense this season has been via post-ups. Per Synergy, the Hoosiers grade out in the 97th percentile in rate of plays ending in post-ups and in the 89th percentile in points per possession via post-ups.

Malik Reneau and Kel’el Ware are nearly unstoppable with their backs to the basket – Reneau due to his strength and finishing ability, and Ware due to his sheer size and deft touch.

Wisconsin has one of the best post-up defenses in the country, but Reneau still managed 28 points and shot 11-of-19 from inside the arc against the Badgers in the first game. Ware was out for the matchup in Madison, and it’s very likely he puts up gaudy offensive numbers in this one alongside his frontcourt counterpart.

While not reliant on its transition attack, Indiana does usually need a healthy dose of it to score efficiently. The Hoosiers’ almost complete lack of outside shooting really hamstrings them in the half court, where opponents can overplay the post and dare IU’s guards to beat them from deep.

The problem is Wisconsin is among the best teams in the nation at disallowing transition chances, and it's adept at controlling tempo, whether at home or on the road. IU was able to hit enough shots from the perimeter in the first game to keep the Badgers honest – it’s unlikely it can again given recent results.

Wisconsin’s primary weakness on the defensive end is its inability to consistently stop dynamic guard play. Athletic, offensively efficient backcourts can hurt the Badgers off the bounce.

Indiana’s backcourt, though, severely lacks dynamism and athleticism. Trey Galloway has been the closest thing to a reliable guard this season, but his offensive creation ability is limited. Gabe Cupps, the promising freshman who has taken over for the injured Xavier Johnson, is a non-threat at this point in his career.

With the Hoosiers being so frontcourt-focused, it will allow Wisconsin to more easily hone in on the true threats and stack the deck to stop IU’s excellent post play. Ware and Reneau might put up solid counting stats despite the focus, but Indiana will almost certainly lose if it can’t get any production from its backcourt.

Wisconsin vs Indiana

Betting Pick & Prediction

While Wisconsin hasn’t proven anything on the road this season, it’s very hard to back Indiana right now. The Hoosiers have appeared lifeless as of late and have gotten down big in each of their last six contests.

Wisconsin has the matchup edges on paper and is clearly the much better team. The coaching matchup also favors the Badgers, with many Hoosiers fans already looking to move on from Mike Woodson at the close of the season.

Pick: Wisconsin -3.5 (Play to -5)

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