It’s not every day you see the No. 1 team in the country as a betting underdog. That’s what the case is in a classic Big Ten Conference matchup between two top five teams in NCAA Basketball. No. 1 Michigan Wolverines take on the No. 3 Indiana Hoosiers in a game that will decide who is on top of the Big Ten standings.
Las Vegas bettors have made the home Hoosiers five point favorites in this game. That seems crazy to me since three of the four meetings between the teams when ranked in the top ten were decided by a combined total of five points. Now granted those meetings all took place 10 years ago, it shows how close games can be between top teams. Here are those four meetings:
- 02/15/65-No. 1 Michigan 96-95 (OT) win vs. No. 8 Indiana
- 03/29/76-No. 1 Indiana 86-68 win vs. No. 9 Michigan
- 01/12/93-No. 6 Indiana 76-75 win vs. No. 2 Michigan
- 02/14/93-No. 1 Indiana 93-92 win vs. No. 4 Michigan
As you can see, Indiana holds the advantage going 3-1 in the top ten matchups. The 1976 game was a blowout of sorts and was actually the NCAA Championship game that year. The Hoosiers completed a perfect 31-0 season that year under head coach Bob Knight. The other easy thing to spot is the fact that all three times one of the two teams was ranked first in the nation, they came out on top.
Michigan could possibly be without starting forward Jordan Morgan and will have its hands full with Cody Zeller. However the team is deep, which is why I love them to win the NCAA Championship. Both teams enter the game with a 7-1 record in conference play. Michigan holds the better overall record (20-1) against an Indiana team (19-2) that lost to Butler in an out of conference game. I picked Indiana to win this game in my Big Ten predictions, but expect a much closer game than Las Vegas does.