Iowa vs. Wisconsin: NCAA Basketball Picks and Predictions

Iowa vs. Wisconsin: NCAA Basketball Picks and PredictionsIowa vs. Wisconsin: NCAA Basketball Picks and PredictionsLuka Garza #55 of the Iowa Hawkeyes on February 07, 2021 in Bloomington, Indiana. Andy Lyons/Getty Images/AFP

Designated by the NCAA basketball futures as the team to beat in the Big Ten, Iowa arrives in Madison sitting fourth in the conference standings while trailing Michigan and Illinois by two games. The Hawkeyes climbed up four rungs in the AP poll to No. 11, also the fourth-highest from the conference. Wisconsin remained at No. 21 in both sets of rankings for the second consecutive week, and the Badgers are a half-game behind Iowa in the league race.

Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Wisconsin Badgers

Thursday, February 18, 2021 – 7:00 PM ET at Kohl Center

‘Under’ Cashes in Hawkeyes’ Last 3

With the Kohl Center still not allowing fans inside, the only way to catch this contest is via the stream on ESPN. If the overnight college basketball odds are any indication, it’s going to be a good one with the Hawkeyes -1.5 and 145.5 for the total.

Fran McCaffrey’s squad has strung together two consecutive wins since dropping four of five during a span of a little more than two weeks. Iowa’s offense ran a bit dry during the slump, the Hawkeyes averaging 75.6 PPG during that 5-game stretch compared to their 87.4 season clip that still ranks second in the country behind Gonzaga. The lineup was without CJ Frederick for three of the losses, and the sophomore guard is questionable with a leg injury for Thursday’s contest.

Iowa beat Rutgers at home last week, the 79-66 final more than enough to cover the 7-point spread at online sportsbooks. The weekend found the Hawkeyes in East Lansing where they battered Michigan State in an 88-58 rout. Favored by 4, Iowa dominated the Spartans on the glass by a 47-36 margin, and netted 13 of its 25 tried from 3-point range. Joe Wieskamp led the way with 21, sinking 5-of-7 from beyond the arc, and Jack Nunge came off the bench for a double-double (18 pts, 11 reb).


UW Eager to Make Up for Letting Michigan Game Slip Away

Greg Gard’s gang has been stuck in a lose one, win one rut since late-January, and if that trend holds true, the Badgers are due for a dubya on Thursday. Of their last four setbacks, three came as favorites on the sports betting board, the only exception being a 75-60 loss at Illinois a little less than two weeks ago getting 4 at the closing bell. Finding the basket from 3-point range has also been an issue of late, with the Badgers shooting 25.8% (15-58) from long-range in their last three trips to the floor.

Wisconsin was zeroed in from outside early this past Sunday against Michigan, connecting on five of the first seven tries from behind the arc. The Badgers took advantage of the Wolverines’ long layoff to go into intermission up by a dozen. Wisconsin only connected on one of its 12 attempts from 3-point range in the second half, however, and went silent at the end of the game as Michigan completed the comeback for a 67-59 decision.

Jonathan Davis #1 of the Wisconsin Badgers. Stacy Revere/Getty Images/AFP

Rivals Have Split Last 6 Meetings

This is the first of two collisions between the old foes who are scheduled to close the regular season against one another in Iowa City on March 7. It has been a close rivalry overall with Wisconsin owning an 85-82 advantage over Iowa. The Badgers and Hawkeyes have traded wins in the last half-dozen matchups with home teams winning three of the last four.

Last season’s lone meeting took place in Iowa City, a 68-62 Hawkeyes triumph that pushed a 6-point spread for most bettors. Two years ago in Madison, the Badgers easily covered as 6-point chalk in a 65-45 final. The last three contests have been ‘under’ winners, as have the last three meetings played at Kohl Center.

This is the first of three tough roadies to finish up the slate for the Hawkeyes who have back-to-back trips to Ohio State and Michigan on the near horizon. The Badgers might be due a win the way things have trended for them, but they’ve also been too inconsistent. I’ll be riding the ‘under’ trend in the rivalry with my free college basketball picks.

NCAAB Pick: Under 145.5 (-110) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

Under 145.5(-110)

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*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.


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