Ohio State Men’s Basketball @ Rutgers Big Ten Basketball Preview

Ohio State Men’s Basketball @ Rutgers Big Ten Basketball Preview

Ryan Knuppel
2 years ago
3 min read
Jamari Wheeler celebrates after a great play against Michigan at Value City Arena on Sunday.

The No. 16 Ohio State Buckeyes take on Rutgers tonight in Jersey Mike’s Arena. The Buckeyes come off a huge win over Maryland, which should help the morale heading into his game. They’re fourth in the Big Ten right now and well behind Purdue.

Any wins will help them get closer to claiming the No. 1 spot in the Big Ten. However, Rutgers won’t get pushed around as easily as some think. 

In fact, when talking about big wins, Rutgers just claimed a huge win over No. 13 Michigan State. Rutgers beat down the Spartans 84-63, and their offense was unstoppable.

Now, the Scarlet Knights have another tough competitor and ranked team in front of them. If Rutgers can get their offense going quickly, Ohio State could be in trouble. Let’s take a look at both teams.

The Buckeyes will look to E.J. Liddell again

E.J. Liddell had a fantastic night against Maryland, putting up 24 points and 11 rebounds. With that kind of performance, Ohio State will look to him again to produce tonight.

The key to beating Rutgers is by preventing their offense from synergizing early. If Ohio State can get Liddell open, Rutgers will be focused on stopping him. However, the Buckeyes can’t forget Ron Harper Jr. 

Ron Harper Jr. is the Rutgers best player and best scorer. He averages 15.9 points per game and is usually the catalyst for their offense. Ohio State should focus its efforts on stalling him out early. If they can do this, they should be able to come away with a win tonight.

The Ohio State defense allows an average of just 67.95 points per game. This should be a smooth win for them.

Can the Scarlet Knights pull off back-to-back upsets?

Although the Ohio State Buckeyes are the favored team, it isn’t by much. For a good reason, the Buckeyes come into this game as just 2.5-point favorites. This is due to the fact that the Scarlet Knights pulled off a shocking upset just a few nights ago.

When they took down the Michigan State Spartans, Rutgers sent a message. They’ll look to deliver the same message to Ohio State.

Of course, this is easier said than done, and Rutgers has a few opposing players to watch. E.J. Liddell is one of them after his impressive 24-point night. Their last game against Michigan State was somewhat of an anomaly.

This season, Rutgers has only averaged 68.27 points per game. However, they easily put up 84 points against MSU. So, what’s the most likely outcome here?

Betting Lines for Ohio State vs. Rutgers on February 9th

As we mentioned above, Ohio State comes into this game as 2.5-point favorites. The total on this game is set at 136.5, and the Moneyline has Ohio State -150 and Rutgers +130.

When thinking about winners, one thing we’ll note is that Ohio State is 8-2 against Rutgers in their last ten. Taking that into consideration, the choice becomes slightly clearer.

We’ll also note that the Buckeyes are 4-1 ATS in their last ten games. In their last seven against Rutgers, the Buckeyes have gone 6-1 against the spread.

The total has also gone over in 13 of Ohio States last 18 games. Keep all of this in mind when making your pick tonight.

Follow us on Twitter @betJACK for all the latest Ohio State sports betting news, picks and much more!

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