Michigan State Spartans Vs. Illinois Fighting Illini 1/31/13 Mitch’s Free College Basketball Pick Against the Spread
The Michigan State Spartans and the Illinois Fighting Illini face off on Thursday in East Lansing in a Big Ten college basketball match up.
The Michigan State Spartans are coming off of their second Big Ten loss of the season but they are tied for second place in the conference with a 6-2 record. Michigan State is 12-0 at home and they have played the 19th ranked schedule in the nation. As a team Michigan State is averaging 69.2 points, 14 assists, and they are shooting 46.3 percent while defensively they are allowing 58.6 points, 11.1 assists, and their opponents are shooting 38.4 percent. Keith Appling is averaging 13.5 points, Gary Harris is averaging 12.7 points, and Branden Dawson is averaging 10.6 points and 6.7 rebounds. Michigan State continues to rebound well and while they don’t always look smooth on the floor their style has proved to be effective over the long haul.
The Illinois Fighting Illini started the season strong but since then they have been fading and have lost five of their seven Big Ten games. Illinois is 4-2 on the road, 3-3 against teams ranked in the top 25, and they have played the 12th toughest schedule in the nation. As a team Illinois is averaging 72.1 points, 10.7 assists, and they are shooting 42.8 percent while defensively they are allowing 66 points, 12 assists, and their opponents are shooting 42 percent. Brandon Paul is averaging 17.9 points, D.J. Richardson is averaging 11.8 points, and Tracy Abrams is averaging 11.3 points. Illinois still has a good enough overall record to save their season but losing more games isn’t an option if they want to be in the NCAA Tournament.
Michigan State is 7-3-1 against the spread in their last 11 Big Ten games, 1-3-1 against the spread in their last five home games, and 5-1 against the spread following a loss. Illinois is 7-20 against the spread in their last 27 Big Ten games, 3-10 against the spread following a loss, and 3-12 against the spread in their last 15 road games. Illinois is 6-2-1 against the spread in their last nine games at Michigan State.
The total is set at 134 and I have this one going over the total and that is my free pick here. My stronger play is on who will cover the spread and I will post that in the Premium Area.