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College basketball point spread favors Nittany Lions in battle with Fighting Illini

Illinois Fighting IlliniPenn State Nittany Lions
13-10February 09, 2014, 04:15 | Bryce Jordan Center12-11

The visiting Illinois Fighting Illini hope to send their backers to the pay window on Sunday as they look to cover the spread at Bryce Jordan Center against the Penn State Nittany Lions.

The Fighting Illini will try to spoil to the party on Sunday; they are 9-11-2 ATS against the number this season, while the Nittany Lions are 11-9 ATS. Illinois is 9-11-1 on the totals; Penn State is 13-7.

View Illinois Fighting Illini vs Penn State Nittany Lions Odds and Stats.

Penn State opened as -3-point favorites in this college basketball tilt over at 5Dimes but the number may be on the move. Watch for the opening total as well at BetOnline.

The Odds Shark Power Rankings have the Nittany Lions at No. 264 and the Fighting Illini at No. 202 heading into this contest.

Illinois was a 75-63 loser in their most recent outing at home against Wisconsin. They failed to cover the 4-point spread as underdogs. The Fighting Illini endured a 75-63 loss at the hands of the Badgers on Tuesday, despite a 24-point effort from Rayvonte Rice at State Farm Center.

In their last action, Penn State was an 82-67 loser on the road against Michigan State. They failed to cover the 13.5-point spread as underdogs. Penn State got 22 points from Tim Frazier but lost anyway, 82-67, to Michigan State on Thursday at Breslin Center.

How They Match Up:
Scoring and defensive stats point to some edges in this matchup. The game features Penn State's No. 75-ranked scoring average of 74.83 PPG, against a Fighting Illini defense rated No. 37 and allowing 64.57 PPG. The Nittany Lions FG% has averaged 44.26% to date this season, more than the Fighting Illini shooters have managed so far (41.3% per game).

Next up:
Illinois at Nebraska, Wednesday, February 12th
Penn State at Indiana, Wednesday, February 12th