Sunday College Basketball Odds & Pick for Michigan vs. Michigan State: Back Wolverines To Cover Against Spartans (March 7)

Sunday College Basketball Odds & Pick for Michigan vs. Michigan State: Back Wolverines To Cover Against Spartans (March 7) article feature image

Jamie Sabau/Getty Images. Pictured: Michigan Wolverines star Hunter Dickinson.

  • Bitter rivals Michigan and Michigan State square off Sunday in the latest showdown between the in-state rivals.
  • The Wolverines clinched the outright Big Ten title four days ago when they cruised to 69-50 win over the Spartans.
  • See below why Andrew Norton think this will be another comfortable win for Michigan.

Michigan vs. Michigan State Odds

Michigan Odds-8
Michigan State Odds+8
Moneyline-360 / +290
Time | TVSunday, 4:30 p.m. ET | CBS
Odds as of Sunday morning and via DraftKings.

Michigan travels 60 miles to the Breslin Center to face Michigan State in Sunday's latest showdown between the in-state rivals.

This marks their second game against each other in just four days. In the Thursday's meeting, the Wolverines managed to put a beating on the Spartans after rumors of an anti-Michigan video of Draymond Green surfaced.

However, this time around, the dynamics shift a bit. It's no longer Senior Night for Michigan, but it is at Michigan State. Also, it’s possible the initial effect of the Green video, which seemed to spark a strong outing from the Wolverines, could wane a bit.

When all is said and done, I still expect that Michigan will take care of its business as it has all season.

Michigan Wolverines | (19-2, 14-2 Big 10)

This Michigan squad is one of the best in recent memory, sitting at No. 2 in the nation. The Wolverines have a high-octane offense that ranks sixth in adjusted offensive efficiency, plus a resilient defense that sits fourth in adjusted defensive efficiency, per KenPom.

This is all powered by Hunter Dickinson, Michigan's All-American big man and John Wooden Award candidate.

Dickinson and the other leading scorers — Isaiah Livers and Franz Wagner – put up 14.4 ppg, 13.9 ppg and 13.0 ppg, respectively. Maturity and chemistry have certainly played a major factor in the Wolverines' success, as five of their top seven scorers are seniors.

This year's Michigan team could even rival the 2012-13 program that made the national championship. The Wolverines' adjusted efficiency rating sits at 33.0, which is much higher than the aforementioned season, when it was just 123.9.

Long story short, these guys are special and they might not lose another game this year.

Michigan State Spartans | (14-11, 8-11 Big 10)

The Spartans enter this regular-season finale having won six of their past 10 games, including two NCAA tournament résumé builders against Illinois and Ohio State. Michigan State's momentum has certainly been slowed down, though, as it has dropped two of its past three games.

Star junior forward Aaron Henry averages 15.4 ppg, 5.6 rpg, and 3.5 apg on the season. He does a lot of everything for the Spartans. Over the past 10 games, Henry has averaged 17.6 ppg, so he has his offensive game clicking on all cylinders. Other significant supporting cast players are Joshua Langford, Joey Hauser and Rocket Watts.

Michigan State is on the bubble of making the NCAA tournament. It has a lot to fight for, because this game could secure an at-large bid for the Spartans. Expect a very scrappy and intense game from these guys.

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Betting Analysis & Pick

Despite any sense of urgency from the Spartans, the Wolverines are just covering machines, standing at 16-5 ATS on the season. They also boast a 6-1 record ATS as road favorites.

The Spartans, on the other hand, have had much less success, as they are 8-17 ATS in total. 

A notable statistical finding was the discrepancy in how these teams have fared ATS with less than four days of rest. Michigan comes in at 11-1 ATS with little rest — an insanely strong record — regardless of turnaround time. However, Michigan State is merely 7-10 on the year ATS in the same category.

All factors are important when considering the efficacy of a bet, and this certainly raises eyebrows. Needless to say, it's enough to turn me away from the Spartans in this matchup.

All things considered, the Wolverines were giving 12 points to a surging Michigan State squad at home last time out, and they comfortably covered. Now, they are on the road playing against a Spartan team that has shown some promise in the last third of the year and now have their own Senior Night.

Despite that fact, I still like the Wolverines to cover. Go with Michigan at -8 and play it up to -10 on the number.

Pick: Michigan -8 (Play up to -10)

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