Rutgers survived a scare over the weekend against lowly Stonehill, possibly looking ahead to its Big Ten tilt against Ohio State on Tuesday.
The Buckeyes have been humming on both sides of the ball in a bounce back effort after missing the NCAA Tournament last season and are fresh off a neutral site overtime win against West Virginia. Rutgers offense has struggled this season, but remains stout on defense, can it cover a big number on the road?
Here's our best bet for this conference meeting on Wednesday night:
Rutgers vs. Ohio State Odds, Spread and Total
Ohio State vs. Rutgers Betting Trends
- Rutgers is 5-7 against the spread (ATS) this season
- Ohio State is 5-8 ATS this season
- Rutgers has goen UNDER in 10 of 12 games this season
- Ohio State has gone OVER in eight of 12 games as a favorite this season
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Rutgers vs. Ohio State How to Watch
- Date: Wednesday, Jan. 3
- Game Time: 7:00 PM EST
- Venue: Value City Arena
- How to Watch (TV): Big Ten Network
- Rutgers Record: 8-4
- Ohio State Record: 11-2
Rutgers vs. Ohio State Key Players to Watch
Clifford Omoruyi: The Rutgers big man is one of the best rim protectors in the country, posting the sixth highest best block percentage in the country at nearly 14%. The Scarlett Knights may be struggling on offense but the team is still top 20 in KenPom's adjusted defensive efficiency metric.
Jamison Battle: Ohio State has integrated in Battle quite nicely, who is enjoying a strong season after two years in Minnesota, shooting a career best 42% from beyond the arc on nearly six 3s per game. Battle is averaging 14 points per game and five rebounds.
Rutgers vs. Ohio State Prediction and Pick
Rutgers' offense is putrid on the surface, outside the top 300 in effective field goal percentage, but is due some better fortune on that side of the ball fall, due a 3% increase in 3-point percentage and 6% rise in midrange jumpers, according to ShotQuality. . The team doesn't take great shots and Ohio State has a disciplined defense, but the team should get a few more to fall.
Meanwhile, Ohio State's defense is due to see some negative regression, due a 2% rise in 3-point percentage allowed and 9% jump in finishing at the rim.
Ohio State's defense has been stout, but particularly lucky when it comes to opponent free throw percentage. The Buckeyes opponents are top 10 in free throw percentage allowed, only 63%. While Rutgers is a miserable free throw shooting team, ranking outside the top 300, can the team find some level ground against a fairly lucky defense thus far.
I think we are getting an unwarranted bump towards Ohio State after the shaky result for Rutgers over the weekend. The team may not be as potent on offense to compete at the top of the Big Ten, but this defense can travel and keep a lid on Ohio State's offense to cover the spread.
For what it's worth, both teams are outside the top 200 in adjusted tempo and there may be limited possessions.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.
Track Reed's bets here!