College Basketball Odds, Expert Picks and & Prediction for Wisconsin vs Michigan (Sunday, Feb. 26)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images. Pictured: Michigan’s Hunter Dickinson.
Wisconsin vs Michigan Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
The middle of the Big Ten standings is jam-packed, leaving much to be decided in a conference that has been dominated by Purdue so far this season.
Among those teams in the deadlock is the Michigan Wolverines. Michigan sits at 10-7 in conference play, which puts it in a tie for third place with Illinois, Indiana and Maryland.
On the other side, Wisconsin has had a less-than-ideal Big Ten campaign, resulting in an 8-9 record.
Saturday’s matchup presents a crucial opportunity for the Wolverines to separate themselves before postseason play rolls around.
To determine if Michigan will rise to this opportunity, let’s take a look at the odds and make a prediction for Wisconsin vs. Michigan.
Although the Badgers have had a bit of a rough season, they’ve won two of their last three games, including victories over Michigan and Iowa.
Wisconsin scored those wins thanks to its play on the defensive end. The Badgers rank 22nd nationally in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency through their ability to play sound team defense.
The Badgers allowed their opponents to score just 43.2% of their baskets off an assist, the 31st-lowest rate in all of college basketball.
Additionally, Wisconsin has rebounded well as a unit, allowing offensive rebounds on just 25% of opponents’ field goal attempts, 42nd nationally.
Unfortunately for Wisconsin, these are not areas Michigan has relied on to jump-start its offense.
Michigan is scoring just 47.1% of its baskets off an assist and grabbing offensive rebounds at just a 25.4% clip. Instead, the Wolverines have thrived when they create penetration.
Penn State's interior D was tough to crack for Michigan.
Not surprising as the Nittany Lions rank in the top-5 in SQ points in both the halfcourt and at the rim.
The Wolverines got the job done via a ton of rim pressure from Bufkin (88th %ILE) and Howard (82nd %ILE). pic.twitter.com/YStz9FQtBz
— ShotQuality (@Shot_Quality) January 6, 2023
The Wolverines are shooting 43.7% from the midrange, as 51.5% of their points have come from 2-point range. This will be a concern for a Wisconsin defense that allows its opponents to score 55% of their baskets from inside the 3-point line, the 55th-highest rate in college basketball.
Juwan Howard’s Wolverines are one of the tougher teams to handicap due to their inconsistency all season. Michigan is the most inconsistent team in the country, according to Haslametrics.
However, it’s been best at home, boasting an 11-4 record when playing in Ann Arbor. In addition to playing at home, the Wolverines will be looking for revenge after falling to Wisconsin just a few weeks ago, 64-59.
On the defensive end, Michigan will look to ensure Wisconsin’s offensive struggles continue. The Badgers rank 259th in effective field goal percentage, averaging just 64.6 points per game.
This offensive inconsistency can be attributed to the Badgers relying heavily on their 3-point shooting. The Badgers attempt 41.7% of their shots from distance, and 39% of their total points come from long range, the 11th-highest rate in the country.
This outside shooting dependency will be exposed against a Michigan defense that has used its size and length to effectively guard the perimeter. The Wolverines are allowing their opponents to shoot just 34.5% of their shots from distance, resulting in just 29.2% of their total points.
Without this outside shooting, Wisconsin will need to rely on its ability to create penetration and high-percentage looks on the interior. Unfortunately for the Badgers, they rank 348th in midrange field goal percentage, resulting in just 46.9% of their points coming from 2-point range.
Wisconsin vs Michigan Betting Pick
Although it’s been difficult to predict which Michigan team will show up night in and night out, this is a great spot to back Howard’s squad.
The Wolverines will be looking to separate themselves from a deadlock in the Big Ten standings while also exacting revenge for a loss they suffered at the hands of Wisconsin on Feb. 14.
Additionally, Michigan has been its most comfortable playing at home, winning 11 of its 15 contests on its home floor.
Expect the Wolverines to limit Wisconsin from the perimeter and expose the Badgers’ inability to defend the interior.
Pick: Michigan -5.5 or Better
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