Betting on today’s Buckeyes and Fighting Illini game? Catch the action at Target Center in Minneapolis, MN, as the Fighting Illini hosts this showdown at 6:30 ET on BTN. This Big Ten conference matchup has an over/under of 153.5 points, and Illinois is favored to win by -4.5 at home vs. Ohio State.


The Pick: Illinois Fighting Illini -4.5

This game will be played at Target Center at 6:30 ET on Friday, March 15th.


  • We have this one finishing with a projected score of 76-69 in favor of the Fighting Illini.
  • Not only will Illinois pick up the win, but look for them to cover at -4.5.
  • The over/under is currently sitting at 153.5 points, and we like the under with a projected 145 points.

Can Ohio State Deliver Being Underdogs on the Road?

Ohio State comes into this game as a 4.5-point underdog, and they have gone 3-7 in their last 10 road games. On the season, the Buckeyes are 6-8 on the road, and they have gone 10-11 in Big Ten play.

Over their last five games, Ohio State has gone 3-2, and they are currently riding a five-game win streak. They are coming off a 90-78 win over Iowa, and their record this season stands at 19-12.

Against the spread this season, Ohio State is just 15-17. However, on the road, their ATS mark is 7-7. Over their last 10 games as the underdog, the Buckeyes have gone 5-5 vs. the spread.

The over/under record for Ohio State this season is 18-14. The average over/under line in their games is 143.5 and the average scoring total is 144.2. So far, 24 of their games have finished with fewer points than today’s line of 153.5. In their last three games, the over/under record is 2-1 and the average scoring total is 145 points.

Coming off a good offensive performance, Ohio State’s offense scored 90 points against Iowa. Their field goal percentage for the game was 51.7%, and they went 17/26 from the free-throw line. The team’s scoring leader is Bruce Thornton, who holds an average of 16 as they head into today’s matchup. Additionally, Jamison Battle is averaging 14.7 points per game this season.

At present, the Buckeyes’ defense is nationally ranked 94th, allowing 69.2 points per game. Against Iowa in their most recent game, the Ohio State defense gave up a total of 78 points while allowing Iowa to hit 41% of their shots.

Is A Home Victory Likely for the Favored Fighting Illini?

Illinois comes into this game as the favorite, as they have been in 25 of their 31 games this season. Their record as the favorite is 20-5, while they are 3-3 as the underdog.

At home, the Fighting Illini have been dominant, going 16-3 this season. Over their last ten games at home, they have gone 8-2, and they are 4-1 over their last five.

Illinois’ ATS record this season is 16-13-2. At home, they are just 8-10-1 vs. the spread this year. Over their last 10 games as the favorite, they have gone 5-5 ATS. In their last 3 home games, the Fighting Illini have an ATS record of 1-2.

Today’s over/under line of 153.5 is lower than the average over/under line in Illinois’ games this year (149.8). This season, the over/under record in their games is 21-10. Over their last three games, the average scoring total is 151 points compared to their season average of 156.9 points per game. So far, 14 of their games have finished with more points than today’s over/under line.

The Illinois offense is coming off a game where they scored 73 points against Iowa. They posted a field goal percentage of 44.4% and connected on 5 threes. In terms of offense, the Fighting Illini have a season-long field goal percentage of 47%, putting them 73rd in the NCAA. Regarding three-pointers, they are ranked 122nd in percentage and 92nd in three-pointers made.

On the defensive side, Illinois is currently hovering around the NCAA’s average for points allowed, conceding an average of 72.9 points per game. Against Iowa in their most recent game, the Illinois defense gave up a total of 61 points while allowing Iowa to hit 35% of their shots.