Indiana Hoosiers (18-12) vs. Illinois Fighting Illini (22-8)
March 11, 2022 11:30 am EDT
The Line: Illinois Fighting Illini -3.5 ; Over/Under: 138.5
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The Indiana Hoosiers and the Illinois Fighting Illini meet Friday in Big Ten Tournament college basketball action from Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Indiana is 19-12 this year and took out Michigan in their Thursday tournament game. As for Illinois, they’re sitting at 22-8 so far and coming off a win over Iowa. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
The Hoosiers were a solid 16-5 back at the end of January, then the team hit a rough five-game losing streak. It’s been a 3-2 run since then with losses to Rutgers and Purdue mixed with wins over Maryland, Minnesota and Michigan.
In the Thursday tournament game versus Michigan, Indiana was in trouble with a 28-41 halftime deficit. The Hoosiers bounced back on a 46-28 run from there and took the 74-69 comeback win. Leading the team in scoring was Trayce Jackson-Davis with 24 points and eight boards.
Over on the Illinois side, they’ve stayed sharp most of the year. They’ve only lost consecutive games twice so far. The Illini finished off the regular-season campaign with three straight tricky victories, taking out Michigan, Penn State and Iowa.
In the Iowa matchup on Sunday, the Illini trailed 37-43 going into the second half. Illinois hit a 37-29 run from there for a 74-72 comeback victory. Tops in scoring was Kofi Cockburn with 21 points and 14 rebounds.
PICK: I’m going to take a stab on Indiana here. The Hoosiers posted a great second half in the Michigan game, ultimately ending up with a 46.4 percent shooting from the field and 32 rebounds. The bad news for Indiana is that they lost 74-57 the last time they met up with Illinois. That said, the Hoosiers have been very competitive over this 3-2 stretch.
As for Illinois, they’ve got some close escapes and a couple of double-digit losses during this current 5-3 run. The Illini have generally been scoring well, though; that’s been the team’s saving grace during some of the close games. This one should be another great matchup, especially if you’re a Big Ten fan. I think Indiana can get in there.