The 3rd-ranked Michigan Wolverines are back in action on Sunday as they travel to face their Big Ten rivals, the 4th-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. This heavyweight battle has all the makeup of an instant classic, with two of the best teams in college basketball battling for the top spot in the conference.
The Wolverines present a solid mix of size and speed, making them a tough defensive assignment for any team in the NCAA. The Buckeyes will be undersized in this matchup, but their skillful shooters can carry them to victory.
Fixture: Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes - NCAA Men's Basketball
Date & Time: Sunday, February 21st, 2021, 1 PM ET
Venue: Value City Arena, Columbus, Ohio
College Basketball Bets Today: Michigan Wolverines vs Ohio State Buckeyes betting odds, lines and over/under
With the top spot of the Big Ten in the balance, the Michigan Wolverines will have their biggest test yet. This will be these teams' first meeting of the year, and could be a preview to the Big Ten championship.
The Ohio State Buckeyes have nearly identical offensive production to Michigan, with both averaging 78 points per game. The Buckeyes will need to find answer for the Wolverines' size in the paint, but their guards can shoot their way to victory.
Carrying an impressive overall record of 15-1, the Michigan Wolverines will have a chance to defend their reign over the Big Ten on Sunday. The Wolverines are outscoring their opponents by 14 points on average this season, boasting one of the top defenses in the conference.
The players to watch for the Wolverines are Isaiah Livers and Hunter Dickinson. Livers has emerged into an all-around star, averaging 14.5 points and 6.1 rebounds per game while also leading the team in 3-point shooting. The 7'1" Hunter Dickinson will provide a huge mismatch in the paint, and could lift the Michigan Wolverines to a much-needed victory.
Ohio State continues to impress, winning seven straight conference games to jump to 4th in the NCAA rankings. With considerably lower rebounding numbers, the Buckeyes will need to out-shoot the Michigan Wolverines if they are going to take them down on Sunday.
Justice Sueing and E.J. Liddell will be the key players for Ohio State, providing the last line of defense in the paint against Hunter Dickinson. Liddell is averaging a team-high 15.5 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, but his defense could be the difference-maker in this matchup.
Michigan Wolverines: +1 (-110)
Ohio State Buckeyes: -1 (-110)
Michigan Wolverines: --
Ohio State Buckeyes: --
Over: 147 (-110)
Under: 147 (-110)
Michigan vs Ohio State Prediction
With the hot streak currently carried by Ohio State, their one-point advantage on the spread is not surprising. The home court advantage will also play a part, but the Ohio State Buckeyes will undoubtedly need their best basketball to win. The Michigan Wolverines have an outstanding frontcourt and can defend with the best. I would take the under in this matchup and give a slight advantage to Michigan to cover or win outright.