Michigan State, champions of the Big Ten tournament and the top seed in the West, takes on 16 seed Long Island, which won both the Northeast regular-season and tournament titles, Friday night.
The Spartans, who jumped from No. 8 in the polls to a No. 1 seed with their win over Ohio State Sunday, are favored by 20 points over the Blackbirds.
Nationwide Arena is the location for this game, which makes it a neutral-site matchup.
The Spartans currently sports a 27-7 record overall in NCAAB action, and have posted a corresponding betting slate of 22-10 ATS. The Blackbirds are 25-8 and 3-0 ATS. Betting totals have seen the Spartans produce a 15-15-2 OVER/UNDER record on the season, while the Blackbirds have gone 1-2 against the number.
Bettors looking to back visiting Long Island before tip-off in this one will find them as 20-point underdogs at . [ Check out million-dollar perfect bracket contest at 5Dimes ]
Power Rankings / Prediction:
The Power Rankings at Odds Shark show No. 160-rated Long Island taking on the No. 1-rated Spartans in this contest. The scores prediction computer here indicates a possible 86-77 win for the Spartans on Friday.
How They Match Up:
The game also pits Michigan State's No. 75-ranked offense, averaging 72.1 PPG, against a Blackbirds defense that ranks No. 338 at 77.3 PPG. The Spartans field goal percentage has averaged 47.6% so far, more than the Blackbirds marksmen have achieved on the year, 47.5% per game.
Defensively, Long Island features the nation's No. 323-rated defense on the road, allowing 78.2 points per game. Michigan State, meanwhile, comes in at No. 62 nationally in scoring at home.
Last time out for Long Island, they were a 90-73 winner as they battled Robert Morris at home. They covered in the match as a 1-point underdog. C.J. Garner scored 21 points leading the Blackbirds to a 90-73 victory over Robert Morris at Wellness Center on Wednesday.
Michigan State won its last outing, a 68-64 result against Ohio State on March 11. They covered in that game as a 2-point underdog. Brandon Wood scored 21 points leading the Spartans to a 68-64 victory over Ohio State at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Sunday.
Michigan State Spartans Trends:
When playing on Friday are 9-1
After playing Ohio State are 9-1
After a win are 8-2
A few Blackbirds at Spartans trends to consider:
Michigan State is 10-2 SU in its last 12 games
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Michigan State's last 7 games