Nationally Ranked Illinois Favored to Beat Michigan State Once Again

The Michigan State vs Illinois Odds Favor The Visiting Fighting Illini

Michigan State is Eyeing Its First Road Win of the 2023-24 Season

Illinois has had nearly a week to deal with a five-point loss to No. 1 Purdue, and now the Fighting Illini play at home against Michigan State. When looking at the Michigan State vs Illinois preview, the Fighting Illini is favored.

Michigan State has dropped both of its true road games, both coming in conference play. Illinois is 8-1 at home this NCAAB season.

The college basketball betting line has Illinois favored by four points. The Fighting Illini is priced at -180 to win, with Michigan State coming in at +155. This is the third year in a row when the Spartans are the home underdog against Illinois after being favored in the previous 19 NCAAB matchups as the home team.

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Illinois is 3-3 in the last two seasons as the road favorite. This will be the second time during that stretch when Michigan State is the home underdog, and each time it happened versus the Fighting Illini.

Guards Jeremy Fears and Gehrig Normand are out for Michigan State.

Terrance Shannon Jr., the top scorer for Illinois, will miss his fourth straight game due to a suspension. Forward Amani Hansberry is questionable, while guard Niccolo Moretti is out.

When looking at the NCAA basketball rankings, Illinois dropped from ninth to 10th in the Associated Press poll after losing to Purdue. In the USA Today coaches poll, the Fighting Illini went from eighth to 10th. Michigan State is receiving votes in both polls.

Michigan State is tied for 11th with +2800 odds of winning the national title, while Illinois is tied for 20th at +5000 in the odds to win March Madness.

Spartans logo Spartans vs Illini Fighting Illini logo

Location: State Farm Center, Champaign, IL
Streaming: Watch Live Sports

A Mixed Bag for the Spartans

There was a bit of the good and some of the bad in Michigan State’s first two games in 2024.

The 31-point home win was followed by a 14-point loss to Northwestern.

Tyson Walker had 27 points against Northwestern.

However, the other five starters were a combined 11-for-27 from the floor, with double-digit scorer Malik Hall failing to score.

The defense was the issue, as the Wildcats shot 54% from the field. Keep that in mind when looking at the Michigan State vs Illinois preview.

Michigan State covered against the spread in five of its last six games.

New Faces Emerge for Illinois

It seems likely that Illinois’ leading scorer Terrance Shannon Jr.’s college career is over after he was charged with rape. He has since filed a restraining order against the university. Illinois has won two of the three games since Shannon was suspended.

Senior Marcus Domask had 58 points on 59% shooting over the last two games. Quincy Guerrier has double-doubles in each of the previous three programs. Over his last six games, he is putting up 18.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per contest. That is something to consider regarding the Michigan State vs Illinois preview.

Illinois has covered in its last 10 games and in its previous five games at home.

Last Meeting

Illinois erased a four-point deficit by outscoring Michigan State 42-29 in the second half.

Coleman Hawkins had nine points and eight rebounds for Illinois as the game landed over the total. It was the third time in the last four meetings that a game between Illinois and Michigan State finished over the total.

Michigan State vs Illinois Betting Preview

Illinois has won three of its last four home games against Michigan. Two of those contests were decided by one point. These NCAAB teams have been built much differently, with Illinois relying on the transfer portal to rebuild its rotation.

Michigan State’s top four scorers (Walker, A.J. Hoggard, Jaden Akins, and Malik Hall) have played together for the last three seasons.

Illinois is 9-1 when listed as the favorite. The Fighting Illini are 10-4 against the spread this season.

The total has gone over in each of Michigan State’s last seven games, as well as in the last five road games.

The Spartans have covered in four of their last five games played in January.

Here’s a quick peek at the NCAAB scores and odds: Michigan State is 0-3, and Illinois is 1-2 in games decided by 10 points.

The total has gone over in four of the last six times when Illinois played host to the Spartans.

The total has gone over in six of the last seven games played by Illinois.

Both Illinois and Michigan State are holding opponents under 40% shooting, so keep that in mind when looking at the 149-point total.

The Fighting Illini is one of the top rebounding teams in the country and is in the top 25 in points per game.

Michigan State ranks in the top 40 nationally in assists per game and field-goal percentage, but as a result of a methodical pace of play, the Spartans are outside the top 100 in scoring offense.

For NCAAB betting news, odds analysis, and more, visit Point Spreads Sports Magazine.

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