The No. 19 Michigan State Spartans aim to bounce back from a cold streak on Saturday afternoon. Michigan State hosts the No. 12 Illinois Fighting Illini in a Big Ten clash, with the Spartans losing three of the last four games. Michigan State also lost to Illinois in a one-point game in January, and the Spartans are 18-7 overall and 9-5 against conference foes. Illinois is 18-7 this season with an 11-4 record in the Big Ten.
Caesars Sportsbook lists the Fighting Illini as 1.5-point road favorites for this noon ET typoff. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over-under, is 138.5 in the latest Illinois vs. Michigan State odds. Before locking in any Michigan State vs. Illinois picks, be sure to check out the college basketball predictions and betting advice from the SportsLine Projection Model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every Division I college basketball game 10,000 times. Over the past five-plus years, the proprietary computer model has generated an impressive profit of almost $2,000 for $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks against the spread. Anyone who has followed it has seen huge returns.
Now, the model has set its sights on Illinois vs. Michigan State, and just locked in its picks and CBB predictions. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the college basketball odds and betting lines for Michigan State vs. Illinois:
- Illinois vs. Michigan State spread: Illinois -1.5
- Illinois vs. Michigan State over-under: 138.5 points
- Illinois vs. Michigan State money line: Illinois -130, MSU +110
- ILL: The Fighting Illini are 7-8 against the spread in Big Ten games
- MSU: The Spartans are 7-7 against the spread in Big Ten games
Featured Game | Michigan State Spartans vs. Illinois Fighting Illinois
Why Illinois can cover
Illinois has a strong team-wide projection, but the Fighting Illini also have the best player on the floor in Kofi Cockburn. The 7-foot center is an All-American candidate and a potential Big Ten Player of the year, averaging 21.4 points and 11.3 rebounds per game, while making 60.5 percent of his shots from him. Cockburn helps to boost Illinois into the top tier nationally in offensive efficiency, with the Illini making 52.7 percent of 2-point attempts. Illinois is also an excellent offensive rebounding team, securing more than 34 percent of available rebounds after missed shots.
On defense, Illinois leads the Big Ten in adjusted efficiency, and the Illini are also No. 1 in the conference in shooting efficiency allowed. Opponents are shooting only 44.1 percent on 2-point shots against Illinois, with the Illini securing 74.1 percent of available defensive rebounds. Illinois is also in the top 10 nationally in 3-point attempt rate allowed and assist percentage allowed to opponents.
Why Michigan State can cover
Michigan State is very strong in key areas on both ends of the floor. The Spartans are above-average on offense, headlined by a top-10 mark nationally in 3-point accuracy at 38.3 percent. Michigan State leads the Big Ten in free-throw shooting, making 81 percent of attempts in conference play, and the Spartans have a strong offensive rebound rate of 31.8 percent. Michigan State generates an assist on 61.6 percent of field goals, a top-15 mark in the country, and Illinois ranks outside the top 300 nationally in turnover rate and steal rate on defense.
Michigan State’s defense is also potent, including the No. 4 mark in the Big Ten in overall efficiency and the No. 1 mark in 3-point shooting allowed. Opponents are making only 30.4 percent of 3-point attempts and 46.3 percent of 2-point attempts against Michigan State, with the Spartans landing solidly above the national average in block rate, free-throw rate allowed and defensive rebound rate.
How to make Michigan State vs. Illinois picks
SportsLine’s model is leaning over on the total, projecting 141 combined points. It also says one side of the spread hits well over 50 percent of the time. You can only get the model’s pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Illinois vs. Michigan State? And which side of the spread hits well over 50 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up almost $2,000 on its college basketball picks the last five-plus years, and find out.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism