Illinois vs. Michigan State Prediction, Odds and Key Players for Saturday, Feb. 10 (Bet under)

College basketball betting preview, prediction and best bet for Illinois-Michigan State. 

Feb 6, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Tom Izzo reacts during a game against Minnesota.
Feb 6, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Tom Izzo reacts during a game against Minnesota. / Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports
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No. 10 Illinois scored an 87-84 overtime win over Nebraska on Sunday for its third consecutive victory. The Fighting Illini are second in the Big 10, but can they get it done against Michigan State on the road? The Spartans are short favorites in a projected close matchup. Michigan State is coming off a 59-56 loss to Minnesota on the road, but have five of their last seven games.

The two teams have already played one tight game earlier in conference play. Who pulls it out on Saturday? Here’s the betting preview for the Big 10 battle with a best bet. 

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Illinois vs. Michigan State odds, spread and total

Illinois vs. Michigan State betting trends

  • Illinois is 11-8-3 ATS this season
  • Michigan State is 12-10-1 ATS this season
  • Illinois is 3-0-1 ATS this season as an underdog
  • Michigan State is 11-7 ATS as a favorite this season
  • The OVER is 14-8 in Illinois games this season
  • The OVER is 10-13 in Michigan State games this season

Illinois vs. Michigan State how to watch

  • Date: Saturday, Feb. 10
  • Game time: 2 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Jack Breslin Student Events Center 
  • How to watch (TV): CBS
  • Illinois record: 17-5 (8-3 Big 10)
  • Michigan State record: 14-9 (6-6 Big 10)

Illinois vs. Michigan State key players to watch

Illinois

Coleman Hawkins: Illinois has had a different leading scorer in three consecutive games and it was Hawkins’ turn in Sunday’s overtime win over Nebraska. The 6-foot-10 senior forward had 20 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists against the Cornhuskers. He is averaging 12 points and 6.4 rebounds per game this season. 

Michigan State

Tyson Walker: The 6-foot-1 senior guard is tied for third in the Big 10 in scoring this season at 19 points per game. Walker is shooting 38.1% from 3-point range this season, but has gone just 5-of-18 from downtown over the last four games. Walker is going to attack offensively, leading the Big 10 in field goal attempts per game (15.5).

Illinois vs. Michigan State prediction and pick 

Both teams have thrived in this spot as Illinois is 3-0-1 as an underdog this season and Michigan State is 10-4 as a favorite inside the Jack Breslin Student Events Center. 

On Jan. 11, Illinois squeaked past Michigan State, 71-68, in a hard-fought matchup where both teams shot just over 40% and struggled from the perimeter (combined 12-of-40). The difference was at the free-throw line, where Illinois went 18-of-22 and Michigan State had just seven tries from the charity stripe. 

Illinois has the No. 7 overall offense in KenPom, but Michigan State is solid on the defensive end. The Spartans are No. 20 in defensive efficiency with impressive metrics in effective field goal percentage (No. 33) and against 2-point field goals (No. 43). Michigan State is No. 1 in the Big 10 in opponent field goal percentage (39.8%). 

 Illinois defense is No. 32 overall despite not forcing a lot of turnovers (No. 342 in steal percentage) and Michigan State is No. 11 in the conference in scoring. The big matchup to watch is the pace of this game, which Michigan State should control on its home court. Michigan State is No. 308 in adjusted tempo while Illinois likes to play fast (No. 75 in tempo).

It’s hard to stand in the way of Tom Izzo-coached teams as March approaches, so go with the under in what should be a Big 10 thriller. 

Pick: UNDER 147


Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.