The Big Ten is going to be a battle every night for the next two months.
Entering Wednesday, the Big Ten has nine teams projected to make the NCAA tournament.
Strong performances on the road can help any team’s resume given how deep the league is.
Penn State can add a nice win to its growing resume at Michigan, who is a bit overvalued on the spread based on its overall results.
The Nittany Lions are one of a few underdogs who will be live on Wednesday night.
Wednesday CBB Picks
Overall Record: 28-34-2
Penn State (+4) at Michigan (7 p.m. ET, BTN)
Don’t let Michigan’s 81-46 win over Maryland cloud your judgement of this game
Penn State has been the more consistent team than the Wolverines. The Nittany Lions have a better field-goal percentage and give up three fewer points per game.
Penn State is also top 20 in three-point offense and effective field-goal percentage. The key stat here is Penn State is 21st in free-throw shooting, while Michigan ranks 268th.
The Nittany Lions can hang, and maybe even win, if they remain efficient and get to the foul line.
Tulsa at Tulane (-13) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
Tulsa comes into Wednesday with three straight losses by 12 or more points. The Golden Hurricane suffered six of their last seven defeats by double figures.
Tulane can wreck the Tulsa defense with its offense that ranks 22nd in adjusted tempo. The Green Wave are 47th in two-point offense and fourth in free throws. Tulsa ranks 326th in two-point defense.
Tulsa conceded over 75 points in all of its double-digit losses, so I expect Tulane to follow that trend and put up a high total in a blowout victory.
Temple (+110) at South Florida (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
I’ll narrow this handicap down to one stat.
Temple ranks 40th in free-throw shooting. South Florida is 346th.
Temple-USF is supposed to be a close game, and if the disparity is that big at the line, I’m going with the Owls.
I also like that the Owls have some momentum from two AAC wins, one of which was on the road.
Fordham (+120) at Rhode Island (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)
Fordham may not be as good as its 12-2 record suggests, but I can still trust the Rams to get a win on the road against a Rhode Island team that is limited offensively.
Rhode Island shoots 39.8 percent from the field and averages 65.6 points per game. Fordham has far better numbers than the Rams in both categories.
Wake Forest (+10.5) at North Carolina (9 p.m. ET, ACC Network
I can’t trust North Carolina as such a big favorite in a conference game.
UNC is coming off a loss to Pitt and two close wins over Ohio State and Michigan.
The Tar Heels are 4-5 against teams in the KenPom Top 100 and all five of those losses came against power-conference teams.