Maryland (22-4, 10-3) at Wisconsin (21-5, 10-3)
When: Sunday, February 19th 2017
Where: Kohl Center, Madison, WI
Time: 1:00 ET | TV: CBS
The Maryland Terrapins and Wisconsin Badgers will battle to keep pace with the Purdue Boilermakers in the Big Ten race when they meet on Sunday afternoon in Madison. Purdue took care of Michigan State on Saturday to move a half game head of both the Terrapins and Badgers. Wisconsin lost its second straight game Thursday against Michigan allowing Maryland and Purdue to catch them. The Badgers played their last game without second-leading scorer Bronson Koenig, but the senior point guard practiced Friday and Saturday and appears ready to return from a left calf strain that also played a part in his two-point performance in last weekend’s loss to Northwestern. Ethan Happ will make life difficult for the Terps inside the paint with his 6’10” frame. The sophomore forward averages a team-leading 14.5 points and 9.1 rebounds and has been on a roll the last four weeks, averaging 18.4 points and 10.4 rebounds. Happ even leads the team in assists at 2.9 a game, which doesn’t say much for Wisconsin’s guards, and has been better in that category of late too, combining for 11 in the last two games. Happ is the only player in the nation leading his team in scoring, rebounding, assists, blocks and steals inside conference play.
Maryland hit the skids earlier this month with a two-game losing streak, but has bounced back with quality wins against Ohio State and Northwestern to stay in the race. Melo Trimble is coming off his best game with the Terrapins, scoring a career-high 32 points Wednesday against Northwestern, shooting 12-for-17 from the floor. The junior will likely match up with Koenig, who got the best of their last matchup, as Trimble shot 1-for-14 from the field in a 70-57 loss to the visiting Badgers last February. In a meeting a month earlier, Trimble hit a game-winning 3-pointer with 1.2 seconds left in a 63-60 victory in Madison. Trimble was shooting only 31% in the four games leading up to Wednesday’s win against Northwestern. Trimble averages 17.2 points for the Terrapins and the next highest scorer is freshman forward Justin Jackson at 11.0. Maryland has won nine games by six points or fewer this season, including three victories by one point, and are 29-8 in games decided by six points or less over the last three seasons.
Maryland has been really good on the road this season and have been dominating the spread of late, covering seven of their last eight road contests. The Badgers have failed to cover their last four games and the favorite in this series is 1-4 ATS in the last five. I’ll take the points.
Pick: Maryland +6
HEAD TO HEAD