At the onset of his tenure, Juwan Howard was sold as the man who could take Michigan to the next level with the College Basketball odds. Initially, Howard had success with predecessor Jim Beilien’s recruits. But as Beilein’s players departed and Howard’s arrived, a slide began. Also, Howard has had numerous blowups with his out-of-control, violent temper. Finally, Howard has missed much of this season with health issues. Michigan basketball is a mess. Now, they must host a good but inconsistent Illinois Fighting Illini program. Illinois has some impressive wins with some inexplicable losses in 2023-24.
Illinois Fighting Illini vs. Michigan Wolverines Betting Information
|Date and Time:
|Thursday, January 18, 2024, 8:30 p.m. ET
|Crisler Center, Ann Arbor, MI
Illinois at Michigan SBG Odds Overview
On the whole, online betting action will be split evenly in this matchup. Despite all of its problems, Michigan remains a name brand. Casuals will be inclined to take the Wolverines based on branding and home court. On the other hand, Illinois will draw its share of sharp support based on a superior body of work. Illinois will offer more value as a quality road team.
Illinois Fighting Illini Team Overview
Overall, the Illinois Fighting Illini are 12-4 straight up, 9-6-1 against the spread, and 9-7 over/under the total. Illinois has national metrics of 38th for scoring offense, 92nd for field goal percentage, 142nd for 3-point field goal percentage, 111th for free throw percentage, and 6th for offensive rebounding. While defensively, Illinois is 89th for scoring defense, 15th for field goal percentage permitted, 95th for 3-point field goal percentage allowed, and 65th for defensive rebounding.
Late on, Illinois lost only one game to the odds in their previous ten outings. Illinois went over the total in seven of their last nine matchups. Terrence Shannon Jr leads Illinois with 21.7 points per game. And then Marcus Domask adds 14.9 points per outing.
Michigan Wolverines Team Overview
Overall, the Michigan Wolverines are 6-10 straight up, 5-11 against the spread, and 11-5 over/under the total. Michigan has national metrics of 56th for scoring offense, 55th for field goal percentage, 37th for 3-point field goal percentage, 195th for free throw percentage, and 183rd for offensive rebounding. While defensively, Michigan is 323rd for scoring defense, 276th for field goal percentage permitted, 310th for 3-point field goal percentage allowed, and 124 for defensive rebounding.
Of major concern is that Michigan covered only one of its most recent ten games. The Wolverines went under the total in three of their last four outings. Michigan’s putrid defensive metrics are an indicator of a soft and undisciplined team.
Namely, Dug McDaniel leads the Wolverines with 17.8 points and 5.1 assists per game. Olivier Nkamhoua adds 16.9 points and 7.6 rebounds per contest.
Juwan Howard has become a polarizing figure as Michigan’s head coach. Howard was a popular player on Michigan’s Fab Five teams of lore from the early 1990s. Following a long NBA career as a player and assistant coach, he was sold as a natural fit at Michigan. Instead, the basketball program is in ruins.
Illinois at Michigan SBG Free Picks
On this occasion, Michigan can’t rate an NCAABB betting recommendation. As mentioned earlier, the Wolverines are in terrible form and provide no value to gamblers.
Illinois at Michigan SBG Best Bet: Michigan Wolverines.