Purdue vs. Michigan State Odds & Picks 2/26/22

by | Feb 26, 2022 | cbb

Purdue Boilermakers (24-4 SU, 13-13-2 ATS) vs. Michigan State Spartans (18-9, 13-13-1 ATS)

When: Saturday, February 26, Noon

Where: Breslin Center, East Lansing, Mich.

TV: ESPN

Point Spread: PUR -2.5/MIST +2.5

Moneyline: PUR -145/MIST +125

Total: 146.5

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Last Time Out:

Purdue beat Rutgers 84-72; Michigan State lost 86-60 to Iowa.

About the Matchup:

The question for both of these teams is motivation, and in the case of Michigan State, there’s the additional question of whether the Spartans are really as good as their perception has suggested. Michigan State has looked really poor over the past month, going just 2-5 SU and 1-6 ATS in that stretch. Only a home win over Indiana, which can’t beat anybody on the road, has given the Spartans a cover since February began, and the result has shoved Michigan State from the cusp of a top-four seed to the eight seed line or worse.

On the other hand, Purdue has looked great at times but quite human at others. The Boilermakers haven’t covered in their past four contests, pushing twice and taking two ATS defeats. The Boilers have been very difficult to bet because they have the potential to destroy anyone they come up against, but it’s never certain as to whether they’re going to play to their potential. They’ve been a lot more reliable than Michigan State, but neither team has been all that comfortable for bettors to back. Which side can grab a much-needed win here?

Scouting the Boilermakers:

The big question for Purdue is what kind of game the Boilers want to turn this into. Michigan State has proven susceptible to the big center dominating the game inside, so the Boilers might opt to work the ball inside to Zach Edey and see if the Spartans have an answer. Or Purdue could get out and run and let Jaden Ivey take over the game. The Boilers used both plans effectively in the win over Rutgers, as Ivey went for 25 points and Edey added 15, opening up things for the team to shoot 53% from the floor.

That’s what makes it so hard to play against Purdue: the Boilers have so many ways that they can hurt you that there’s really no one thing that you can take away to punish them. Purdue rebounds it well, scores the ball inside, and has excellent outside shooters available to take over a game at any point. There are really only two big problems for this team: the Boilermakers don’t put teams away at the line, and they don’t defend all that well. When Purdue faces a good 3-point shooting team, it either needs to hope that its defense can do just enough or hit the gas when it has the ball. More often than not, it works out for them, but it’s still a major point of concern for Matt Painter’s team.

Scouting the Spartans:

Seeing the Spartans hit a midseason slide isn’t that unusual for Tom Izzo’s team. What is unusual is that Izzo doesn’t seem to have an answer to get out of this situation, and the Spartans are getting out-toughed by their competitors. Getting pounded inside by Kofi Cockburn was one thing, but the Spartans also couldn’t handle John Harrar of Penn State inside when they went to University Park.

Against Iowa, things really went wrong for the Spartans in a hurry, as they weren’t even competitive after the second media timeout. Part of that was because of putrid shooting from the Spartans, but part of it was because this team just hasn’t seemed very aggressive this season. Michigan State seems to be lost at this point in the year, and it’s not clear that Izzo can rescue this before the Spartans find their way to another first-round exit.

Purdue will Cover If: The Boilers play their game. Really, Purdue has looked the better team by a mile for the past month, and it’s only because the public has such respect for Izzo and the program he’s built that this number is as low as it is. Based on the way the teams have looked for the past month, if Purdue is ready to play, the Boilers should be in good shape.

Michigan State will Cover If: The Spartans can hit a few shots and force Purdue out of its comfort zone. There really isn’t a way to completely stop Purdue because the Boilers have so many weapons, but you can slow them down and force them into a slower-paced game. But if the defense isn’t getting the job done, it’s not going to work.

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Dan’s Best Prop Bets

Michigan State really isn’t stopping teams lately. Three of the Spartans’ past six opponents have hit 79 or more, and of the exceptions, Indiana can’t do anything on the road, and Penn State’s rock fights in University Park happen to everyone. Only against Wisconsin did the Spartans play decent defense, and Purdue’s offense is a fair amount better than the Badgers. I like the Boilers to go over 75.5 points.

Dan’s Pick to Cover the Spread

Given what I’ve said in this piece, it should come as no surprise that I really like Purdue in this situation. Michigan State has its backs to the wall now, but the Spartans really haven’t responded and look more like a team that’s on its way to Dayton than it is to a tournament run. Give me the Boilers. Looking to re-load your sports betting account? Instead of getting nothing from your bookie, consider grabbing a 100% real cash bonus up to $1000 at Betnow Sportsbook!