Penn State vs. Indiana Prediction and Odds (Expect Hoosiers' Top Defense to Return)

Indiana head coach Mike Woodson was not pleased with the Hoosiers' worst defensive effort in Big Ten play vs. Michigan on Sunday.
Indiana head coach Mike Woodson was not pleased with the Hoosiers' worst defensive effort in Big Ten play vs. Michigan on Sunday. / Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times / USA TODAY

Mike Woodson and the Indiana Hoosiers are in the midst of a three-game homestand at Assembly Hall when they welcome the Penn State Nittany Lions to Bloomington this evening.

Fresh off their upset of the No. 4 Purdue Boilermakers last Thursday, the Hoosiers were sloppy on both ends of the floor in a 80-62 blowout loss to Michigan on Sunday afternoon en route to their first home loss of the season.

Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions have already gotten the better of the Hoosiers in a 61-58 win in Happy Valley back on January 2.

Let's take a look at how the oddsmakers at WynnBET expect tonight's Big Ten matchup to go down.

Penn State vs. Indiana Odds, Spread and Total


  • Penn State +8.5 (-110)
  • Indiana -8.5 (-110)


  • Penn State +300
  • Indiana -390

Penn State vs. Indiana Prediction and Odds

I like Indiana to bounce back at home tonight, but the number of 8.5 is scaring me off the spread considering the amount of single possession games IU has both won and lost this season.

While the overall total of 126.5 feels like a solid under play, I'm going to go even more specific and grab the UNDER 59 for the first half.

Penn State doesn't score. They average 65.5 points per game and come in with the 108th KenPom adjusted offensive efficiency in the country. They bleed teams to death defensively, and try to maximize opportunities through deflections and steals to get out on the perimeter. Seth Lundy, their leading scorer still only averages 13.7 per game, but he's a great free throw shooter and can still get to the basket.

Indiana, on the other hand, remains a team of two halves (although they were bad in both last time out vs. Michigan). They shot just over 26% from three-point range on Sunday while also not defending the outside shot well against the Wolverines, leaving a recipe for disaster.

However, when Indiana is locked in defensively, they're top 18 in KenPom's defensive efficiency rankings and were top 13 before last Sunday. They'll also need more from Trayce Jackson-Davis, who has been in a mild slump the last few games due to both foul trouble and his shot just not falling. After four consecutive games with 11-12 rebounds, Davis has just nine in the last two.

I expect Woody and the Hoosiers to set the tone early, limiting the Nittany Lions' chances on offense and getting TJD some good looks inside. Expect very few points in the first half.


Follow all of Ben Heisler's betting picks in real-time here