Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:47 AM

Michigan State vs. Ohio State Predictions, Odds

  • January 31, 2021
  • By Thom Cunningham

The Michigan State Spartans look to get back on track with a tough road game against the Ohio State Buckeyes. Tip is set for 1 p.m. (ET) and will air on CBS.



Michigan State-Ohio State Betting Odds

  • Spread: Ohio State -7.5
  • Money-Line: TBD
  • Total: 143.5

Odds Subject to Change

Ohio State is the home favorite, given a touchdown spread with -7.5 against the Spartans. Ohio State is 9-7-1 on the ATS this season, while Michigan State has failed to cover 10 of 13 games this season.

The point total is set at 143.5, which Ohio State tends to go OVER on. The Buckeyes are 10-7 on the O/U, while Michigan State is essentially split at 6-7.

Betting Analysis –Michigan State Spartans

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 8-5
  • ATS: 3-10
  • SU - Home: 6-2
  • SU - Away: 2-3
  • O/U: 6-7

What a dreadful return to the court Michigan State had in a road loss to Rutgers. Michigan State looked outmatched the entire game, although there were a few plays where the Spartans did look good. Overall, there's much work to be done for the Spartans.

They're giving up just as many points as they're scoring (73 to 71), allowing 71 points per game which ranks 203rd nationally. There are only two Spartans that average a double-digit point total in Aaron Henry and Joey Hauser, which would be fine if the defense was half-decent.

Michigan State only forces 4.8 steals per game which is a woeful 313th nationally, while shooting the 202nd-worst field goal percentage (43.7%) and the 220th-worst two-point percentage (49.5%). There are things Michigan State does well, as noted earlier.

Rutgers guard Ron Harper, Jr. felt all five blocks per game that Michigan State averages, which is 20th in the nation. Also, Michigan State moves the ball well with 18.3 assists per game (ranks 11th nationally). They also see 38.2 rebounds per game which ranks 82nd.

Still, this is an offense in trouble with no true scorer to lean on. Typically Michigan State can cover a woeful offensive night with lockdown defense, but the defense is statistically worse than the offense for Tom Izzo's club this season.

Betting Analysis – Ohio State Buckeyes

Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under (O/U)

  • SU: 13-4
  • ATS: 9-7-1
  • SU - Home: 9-1
  • SU - Away: 4-3
  • O/U: 10-7

Somehow, the Buckeyes and Chris Holtmann continued to be overlooked. Even after finally earning the respect of poll voters with a top 15 ranking, the Buckeyes are not deemed a top Big Ten team. They should be, able to compete with Wisconsin, Michigan, Iowa and Illinois.

E.J. Liddell being back is huge for this club, averaging a team-high 15 points and 6.8 rebounds per game.C.J. Walker is also back, averaging about eight points and a team-high four assists per game. Add Justice Sueing, Duane Washington and Kyle Young and you've got a well-rounded basketball team.

This team has depth and experience, along with a great head coach. They connect on 17.6 free throws per game (ranks ninth nationally), shoot the 28th-best free throw percentage (76.5%) and make 53.1% of their two-pointers which ranks 86th nationally. The experience shows in those stats, looking for easy buckets and shots at the charity stripe.

Ohio State is one of the better dark horses nationally right now, able to win big games with the depth, experience, coaching and talent they have. The defense has work to be done however, currently posting a rating of 100.8 which ranks 222nd nationally. They do have the 19th-most efficient offense though, and average nearly 80 points per game.

The ability to score points, mixed with the experience and depth, actually makes the Buckeyes one of the better teams to bank on with adversity in a game. Not that they'll face any against Michigan State, but the strengths of this club is usually reflective on teams that can close out big games in high-pressured situations. Keep your eye on this team moving into February and March, a possible sleeper based on their current odds.

Inside the Stats – Michigan State Spartans

  • PS/G: 73 (152nd)
  • PA/G: 71 (203rd)
  • Off Rtg: 102.4 (169th)
  • Def Rtg: 99.6 (194th)

Inside the Stats – Ohio State Buckeyes

  • PS/G: 76.9 (77th)
  • PA/G: 68 (122nd)
  • Off Rtg: 114 (19th)
  • Def Rtg: 100.8 (222nd)

Key Players to Watch

  • MSU - Aaron Henry (13.4 PPG, 5.4 RPG)
  • MSU - Joey Hauser (11.3 PPG, 7.5 RPG)
  • OHST - Duane Washington (14.9 PPG)
  • OHST - E.J. Liddell (15.9 PPG, 6.8 RPG)

Michigan State-Ohio StatePredictions

Michigan State is a mess right now, hard to trust the offense and defense. For that reason, along with an abysmal 3-10 ATS, take Ohio State at home with the odds in its favor. Also, 143.5 is a bit high for the point total.

This is assuming Ohio State can either touch the high 70's, or both teams can touch 70. Michigan State's offense is in a funk right now, but they should see 60 minimum. Ohio State is averaging roughly 76 per game, so meeting in the middle the game should go UNDER.

Of the two markets the spread seems better. You would be playing the smart odds (3-10 ATS for Michigan State), while also betting against a sluggish team entering its second straight road game. Some say this feels like a trap, but if Ohio State is truly a Big Ten dark horse then they should cover seven points at home.

  • Score Prediction: Ohio State 75 Michigan State 67
  • Best Bets: Ohio State -7.5
  • Best Bets: UNDER

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