Following a stunning loss at home to Northwestern on February 11, the Wisconsin Badgers hold just a half-game lead in the Big Ten standings. The Badgers have been struggling offensively as of late but will look to rebound and start quickly when they travel to Ann Arbor to take on the Michigan Wolverines on February 16.
The Wolverines, on the other hand, have been playing far better than they started as of late. They have won two-straight Big Ten games after losing the two before that.
Wisconsin and Michigan met earlier this season in Madison with the Badgers winning, 68-64.
Here is a preview of what to expect during Thursday’s game:
Wisconsin vs. Michigan Betting Info
Note: All numbers and odds courtesy of OddsShark.com.
Date: Thursday, February 16, 2017
Time & Channel: 7 p.m. Eastern on ESPN
Spread: Wisconsin (-2)
Moneyline: Wisconsin (+100); Michigan (-120)
Wisconsin vs. Michigan Prediction
Wisconsin’s offense has been lacking, scoring just 22 points in the first half in the loss against Northwestern. But sophomore Ethan Happ has been the silver lining for the team. He is carrying the weight of the Badgers’ offense, leading the team with 14.2 points per game to go along with 9.2 rebounds. He is almost more impressive on defense, averaging 2 steals per game.
The No. 11-ranked Badgers desperately need to get Happ going early and often against a Michigan defense that is giving up an average of 65.5 points per game.
Offensively, the Wolverines are led by Derrick Walton Jr., who is averaging 14.7 points per game. But Wisconsin has one of the nation’s best defenses. The Badgers are giving up 60.4 points per game defensively, ranked fourth best in the NCAA.
The Badgers are 10-2 in the Big Ten and sit atop the standings, 0.5 games ahead of Maryland and Purdue. Michigan is 6-6 in conference and figures to try and play the role of spoiler for the Badgers.
With the stakes high, look for the Badgers to rebound from their loss to Northwestern with a closer, but big road win against Michigan.
Prediction: Wisconsin 63, Michigan 57