Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:00 AM

Sunday's Big Ten Tips

The top two teams in the Big Ten will be in action this Sunday in a pair of featured matchups on that day’s card. Things get underway late Sunday afternoon with Michigan State going on the road to face Penn State.

Sunday night’s three-game betting slate starts things off with Northwestern making the trip to Ann Arbor in a matchup against Michigan in the other Big Ten clash.

Opening Odds per

No. 6 Michigan State at Penn State (CBS, 4:30 p.m. ET)

Opening Odds: Michigan State -5, Total 141

Betting Matchup

Michigan may be ranked higher at the moment, but the Spartans are making a strong case as the best team in the Big Ten. This is backed by a straight-up nine-game winning streak that includes some quality wins. They have gone a profitable 8-1 against the spread over this same span, including a perfect 5-0 start both SU and ATS in conference play. Michigan State beat Ohio State 86-77 on Jan. 5 as a two-point road favorite ahead of Tuesday’s 77-59 romp over Purdue as a seven-point favorite at home. Junior guard Cassius Winston is averaging a team-high 18 points and he has now scored at least 23 points in four of his last five starts.

The Nittany Lions continue to take it on the chin in early conference play. Thursday’s 70-64 loss to Nebraska was their fifth SU loss in five Big Ten matchups. They did cover as 10 ½-point road underdogs in that latest loss as part of a 1-4 record ATS. Penn State is 7-9 SU overall with a 6-10 record ATS. It is 2-5 against the number when closing as an underdog. The Lions are averaging 58.4 points per game against the Big Ten as opposed to an overall scoring average of 67.9 PPG. One of the lone bright spots has been the play of junior forward Lamar Stevens with a team-high 18.6 PPG. He put up 22 points in a recent loss to Wisconsin.

Betting Trends

-- The Spartans are 4-1 ATS in their last five road games and they have gone 24-10 ATS in their last 34 games against a SU losing team. The total has stayed UNDER in six of their last eight Sunday games.

-- The Nittany Lions have gone 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games against a team with a SU winning record on the road. The total has stayed UNDER in 20 of their last 28 games at home.

-- The home team has covered in nine of the last 13 meetings and the total has stayed UNDER in five of the last seven meetings at Penn State.

Northwestern at No. 2 Michigan (BTN, 7:30 p.m. ET)

Opening Odds: Michigan -12.5, Total 126

Betting Matchup

Northwestern (10-6 SU, 8-7-1 ATS) was on the wrong end of a 73-63 loss to Iowa on Wednesday night closing as a three-point favorite at home. The total stayed UNDER 144 points in that game and it has stayed UNDER in five of its last six games. The Wildcats are 1-4 SU in the Big Ten with a 2-3 mark ATS. The total has stayed UNDER or ended as a PUSH in 11 of their first 15 games overall. Northwestern has remained stingy on defense with a points-allowed average of 63.8 PPG, but it has failed to score more than 66 points in each of its first five conference games.

Michigan remained perfect on the year at 16-0 with Thursday’s 79-69 road victory against Illinois. The Wolverines have been able to cover in their last three games to even their record ATS this year to 8-8. They are 4-7 ATS at home and the total has stayed UNDER in 10 of their 16 games overall. All five Michigan starters ended Thursday’s game in double figures. The Wolverines shot 45.2 percent from the field, but they struggled from three-point range going 5-for-19. On the year, their field goal percentage is 46.7 while converting on 36.4 percent of their shots from beyond the arc.

Betting Trends

-- The Wildcats have gone 3-1-1 ATS in their last five games following a SU loss and they are 2-6 ATS in their last eight home games.

-- The Wolverines are 10-1 ATS in their last 11 Sunday games and they are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games after covering in their previous outing. The total has stayed UNDER in four of their five home games.

-- The underdog has covered in four of the last five meetings and the total has stayed UNDER or ended as a PUSH in six of the last seven meetings at Michigan.


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