Purdue has definitely played the more difficult of the two schedules. They are 3-0 at home, but 0-2 against top 100 competition overall.
Ohio State Betting Preview
Ohio State avoided an upset against in-state rival Cleveland State in their last game. They won by a score of 67-61, but the game was close the whole way and the Buckeyes really struggled shooting the ball. They shot 40% overall and only 28.6% from behind the arc.
E.J. Lidell, who is the Buckeyes leader in scoring, rebound, blocked shots and steals, will miss the game with mono. Lidell is averaging 15.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per contest.
All is not lost for Ohio State as they have three other players averaging in double figures. Duane Washington Jr, Justice Sueing and CJ Walker are all averaging more than 13 points per game and will be asked to carry more of the load with Lidell out.
The rebounding production is going to be more of a concern for the Buckeyes with Lidell out. Ohio State was outrebounded by Cleveland State. Kyle Young is averaging 6.2 rebounds per game but will have his hands full trying to keep 7-4 Zach Edey off the boards.
Ohio State is ranked 20th overall by Kenpom. They are 11th in offensive efficiency and 36th on defense.
Purdue Betting Preview
The Boilermakers really struggled on the road against Miami in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. They were a putrid 4 for 25 from behind the arc and ultimately lost the game to a Hurricane team missing multiple players. They did bounce back with a win over in-state rival Indiana State but consistency has been an issue for Purdue.
Trevion Williams leads the Boilermakers in scoring (13.3) and rebounding (10.3). One issue for Ohio State is their lack of size inside, so look for Williams and freshman Zach Edey to give a ton of work inside.
Joining Williams in double figures are Edey (13.3), Sasha Stefanovic (12.0), Eric Hunter Jr. (12.), and Jaden Ivey (12.0). Aaron Wheeler is the team’s second leading rebounder at 6.5 per game and leads the team in blocks with 1.5 per contest.
Kenpom has Purdue ranked 32nd in the nation. Their offensive efficiency ranks 30th while the defense comes in at 38th.
Boilermakers/Buckeyes Betting Lines
Mybookie has Purdue as a 4-point favorite. The total is set at 133.5 points.
Free Betting Pick
This game will be decided on the interior. Ohio State is by far the superior team in the backcourt, but without Lidell the advantage is limited. Look for the Buckeyes to play some zone to try and minimize the size advantage of Williams and Edey.
If Lidell was healthy, I think Ohio State is at least a pick’em. I still think Ohio State covers, but Purdue wins the game.
Ohio State 69, Purdue 70
Spooky Express Free Pick: Ohio State +4