Purdue Boilermakers vs. Ohio State Buckeyes Preview
Where: Value City Arena — Columbus, Ohio
When: Thursday, January 5, 2017, 7:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: ESPN
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Betting on the Purdue Boilermakers (-3.5)
Sunday’s tough overtime loss to Minnesota snapped Purdue’s seven-game winning streak, which also caused the Boilermakers to drop down to No. 20 in this week’s AP Poll.
They turned the ball over 14 times, resulting into 19 Minnesota points. The defense allowed a season-high 91 points and basically had no answers in stopping the 31-point, 11-assist outburst courtesy of Nate Mason. Although the Golden Gopher point guard stole the spotlight and got the victory, Purdue’s own Caleb Swanigan kept piling up the points and boards with his fourth 20-20 output and nation-leading 12th double-double of the season: 28 points, 22 rebounds.
There’s no question that the sophomore forward’s been flat-out superb, averaging team-highs of 18.5 points and 13.0 rebounds thus far. But Swanigan’s been arguably the only consistent player for the Boilermakers. He would definitely welcome any offensive support he can get, especially from his fellow starters in Isaac Haas (13.9 PPG) and Carsen Edwards (10.7 PPG), who were both held to no more than seven points by Minnesota.
Purdue is 4-6 SU and 5-5 ATS in its last 10 games on the road.
Betting on the Ohio State Buckeyes (+3.5)
To put it simply, the Buckeyes have won games they should have won, but have fallen short when going up against stronger teams. They’re 0-2 versus ranked foes, losing to then-No. 6 Virginia and then-No. 2 UCLA earlier this season.
Ohio State put up a relatively good fight in both losses at the least, particularly against the Cavaliers who only won by two points. And that said, the Buckeyes should manage to put themselves in position to upset 20th-ranked Purdue.
The Boilermakers have an ugly history when playing at Value City Arena, a place wherein they’ve just won once in 14 visits. The Buckeyes, meanwhile, have bested their Big Ten rival six-straight times at the said venue, going 3-3 against the spread during that stretch.
However, Ohio State’s looked vulnerable at home this season, and proving that would be its loss to an inferior Florida Atlantic team on December 6, 79-77. The Buckeyes’ inefficient shooting was on display in that game, as they shot just 41.8 percent collectively, including 20.0 percent from down town.
Defense has been one of their best points thus far, though. Coach Thad Matta’s troops are allowing just 63.9 points on the season, among the lowest in the nation. They’re really going to have to live up to that, especially against Purdue’s high-scoring offense (84.5 points a game).
Purdue (-3.5) wins it, 71-64.
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