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Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds – Lucas, Spartans handle immature Wolverines

Posted by Washington Tucker on 1/25/2010 1:45:54 PM

NCAA Basketball Odds: Pick Michigan State

Most online betting players figured Michigan State would roll through the Big Ten, and the Spartans have won the first seven games of their conference schedule. On Tuesday, they’ll travel to meet rival Michigan, who have had some problems with leadership, in particular their best player, and the Spartans will take advantage of this.

WHAT: NCAA basketball betting
WHEN: Tuesday, January 26, 7:00 PM ET
WHERE: Crisler Arena, Ann Arbor, MI
KEY STAT:Michigan State has won eight of their last 10 against Michigan

The Storyline - Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds
The Spartans (17-3, 7-0) should continue to threaten the top five, and Michigan State got their best performance of the year out of Kalin Lucas in a 65-64 win at Minnesota on Saturday, coming back from an eight-point halftime deficit to win their eighth straight since falling at Texas. The Wolverines (10-9, 3-4) continued their inconsistent play with a 69-59 loss at Purdue, and this will be their fourth straight game against a ranked opponent.

Offensive Matchups - Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds
Raymar Morgan has been coming on, and he’s certainly a big part of Michigan State’s plans as the forward gives them a physical presence up front. But the Spartans will go only as far as Lucas takes them, and the point guard willed his team to the win over Minnesota. Michigan State is third in the nation in assists, and 18th in field-goal percentage, so they’re an unselfish team that doesn’t waste chances.

The Wolverines, who are 199th in points scored, are powered by the inside-outside duo of Manny Harris and DeShawn Sims, who combine to score 36.6 points per game. Michigan is very good with the ball, coming 16th in assists-to-turnover ratio, but they just don’t have enough options, and it showed as Harris was suspended for the loss against Purdue. Harris, who leads the Big Ten in scoring, may also be out for this game as well.

Betting Edge: Michigan State

Defensive Matchups - Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds
Of course, a Tom Izzo-coached squad is going to be solid defensively as Michigan State is 32nd in field-goal defense. They’re also second in the nation in rebounding margin, and Draymond Green leads a group effort on the boards. The Spartans don’t take many chances for steals or blocks, but they’ll stay in front of you on defense, and Michigan State will be all over you for 40 minutes.

The Wolverines are solid enough on defense, trying to make up for their offensive shortcomings, as they’re 43rd in points allowed and 32nd in three-point defense. Sims is a force on the boards, and Harris is a decent rebounder for a guard. No Wolverine is averaging more than one block per game, which could be a problem.

Betting Edge: Draw

Coaching Matchup - Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds
Izzo has the Spartans back on track after a shaky December that saw them lose to North Carolina and Texas, and his relationship with Lucas has a lot to do with that. Izzo sat Lucas in a December practice, and the guard has responded in a big way. Izzo may have the biggest say in a team’s sportsbook odds this year, as the Spartans really listen to their coach, and there is no question who has the final say around this team.

John Beilein is having his own problem with a star guard as Harris was suspended before the Purdue game for something that happened during a practice. Beilein is trying to instill some discipline into the program in his third year at Ann Arbor, which is definitely needed after some past indiscretion by former Michigan coaches. Still, patience is starting to wear thin around campus.

Betting Edge: Michigan State

Betting Prediction - Michigan State vs Michigan Betting Odds
The Spartans should be the road favorites in this rivalry game, and they’ve won eight of their last 10 meetings against the Wolverines, including three of the last five in Ann Arbor. Michigan State seems to be rounding into form ahead of the important month of February, and even if Harris is back, the Spartans have enough weapons to get past the Wolverines. Mainly, the Spartans have a proven leader on the court in Lucas, while Michigan doesn’t have that sort of maturity on the team.


The Betting Edge at BetOnline has everything you need when it comes to sports betting tips and picks in college hoops. For more on the Michigan State vs Michigan matchup, please visit our stats section.




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