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NCAA Basketball Game Preview - Nittany Lions underdogs vs Wildcats at Northwestern

Penn State Nittany LionsNorthwestern Wildcats
March 7, 7:00 PM | Welsh-Ryan Arena

Penn State Nittany Lions vs Northwestern Wildcats Odds

9-19TEAM RECORD13-16

The Northwestern Wildcats hope to be lousy hosts on Thursday as the Penn State Nittany Lions pay a visit to Welsh-Ryan Arena on the college basketball betting menu.

Northwestern will face the 9-19 Nittany Lions, who own a 12-12 ATS mark on the season. In totals betting, the Wildcats are 9-13-1 favoring the UNDER so far this season while the Nittany Lions are 12-11 favoring the OVER.

View Penn State vs Northwestern Odds and Stats.

Betting Line:
College basketball odds makers at BetOnline opened the Northwestern Wildcats as 4.5-point favorites in this matchup. Check for the latest spread and over-under at the sportsbook.

Power Rankings / Prediction:
The Wildcats - Nittany Lions odds would favor the Wildcats if the lines were set according to our power ranks. Northwestern is rated No. 242 in the current Odds Shark poll, while Penn State is at No. 250. Mathematical models based on recent stats and predictive formulas point to a 61-56 win for the Wildcats.

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How They Match Up:
When it comes to rebounds, the visiting Nittany Lions rank No. 159 in NCAA Division 1 with 35 per game. That compares with Northwestern’s No. 312 ranking in that category. The story is different when it comes to three-point shooting where Northwestern is college basketball's No. 52-ranked team at 7.6 per game, while the Nittany Lions rate No. 281 with 5.1 per game.

Defensively, Penn State features the nation's No. 149-rated defense on the road, allowing 68.5 points per game. Northwestern, meanwhile, comes in at No. 314 nationally in scoring at home.

Penn State was a 73-44 loser in their most recent outing on the road against Minnesota. They failed to cover the 16.5-point spread as underdogs. Penn State was crushed on Saturday, getting blown out by Minnesota and falling by a 73-44 score at Williams Arena.

Northwestern was a 63-53 loser in their most recent outing at home against Ohio State. They covered the 10.5-point spread as underdogs. Tre Demps scored 14 points in a futile effort to lead the Wildcats to a win (they lost 63-53 to Ohio State at Welsh-Ryan Arena on Thursday).

Penn State Nittany Lions Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 3-7
Before playing Wisconsin are 6-4
After playing Minnesota are 4-6
After a loss are 1-9

Northwestern Wildcats Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 5-5
Before playing Michigan State are 2-8
After playing Ohio State are 5-5
After a loss are 4-6

A few Nittany Lions at Wildcats trends to consider:
Penn State is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Northwestern
Penn State is 7-13-1 ATS in its last 21 games on the road
Penn State is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Northwestern's last 7 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Northwestern's last 5 games
Northwestern is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games
Northwestern is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Penn State

Next up:
Penn State home to Wisconsin, Sunday, March 10
Northwestern at Michigan State, Sunday, March 10