Indiana’s lull appears to be over, and now the Hoosiers are in prime position to make a run in the NCAA tournament if they can sustain the momentum they showed at the Big Ten tournament. Trayce Jackson-Davis was outstanding in Indianapolis, and Wyoming hasn’t really faced a player of his caliber this season. However, Jackson-Davis hasn’t always been the most consistent player around, and if Indiana can’t sustain the momentum it showed down the stretch, the Hoosiers won’t last long in the tournament.
For the Cowboys, there’s a real question of whether they’re really a good team themselves or just happened to play in a respected league. Wyoming does bring a quality scorer and rebounder to the table in Graham Ike, but the Cowboys also never beat any of the good teams in the Mountain West on the road. They fell at fellow tournament teams San Diego State, Boise State and Colorado State, and their only road win over an NCAA tournament team was at Cal State Fullerton. Wyoming deserves credit for being willing to visit a Big West school, but the Titans are a No. 15 seed for a reason. In all, there are numerous reasons to talk yourself into either of these teams, but there are also numerous flaws.
Indiana Hoosiers vs. Wyoming Cowboys Odds, Trends, and Picks
Opening Betting Odds and Lines
|(20-13 SU, 19-14 ATS)||Form||(25-8 SU, 17-13-2 ATS)|
When: 10.10pm, Saturday, March 15th
Where: UD Arena, Dayton, Ohio
Betting the Total
This looks like it might develop into a rock fight. Indiana likes a moderate pace and is most comfortable when it can keep its opponent in the mid to low 60s. The Hoosiers were able to slow the game down well against Illinois to emerge with a 65-63 win that it turned out they needed, and they play excellent defense wherever they are on the floor. Plus, they don’t shoot the 3 very well and they don’t tend to get a lot of points from the free-throw line.
The Hoosiers are most likely to score two points at a time and score with the clock running, both of which are recipes for unders. Wyoming is also no slouch on defense and is just average at shooting the 3-pointer, so I don’t expect big numbers from either team here.
I recommend backing Under 131.5.
Backing the Spread
I think the lack of preparation against a tough schedule is going to backfire on Wyoming here. The Cowboys have seen some tough opponents, but they haven’t been going through a meat grinder the way Indiana has. Wyoming’s been able to relax a little bit against the likes of Nevada, New Mexico, Air Force and San Jose State while testing themselves against the Mountain West’s best.
There are no such gifts in the Big Ten, and it should have Indiana well-prepared for what it’s about to face here. If the Hoosiers were coming into this like Ohio State, which seems to be collapsing under the weight of what it’s faced, I’d like Wyoming’s situation here. But Indiana is playing its best basketball at the perfect time of the season, and I think it’s ready for this challenge.
I wouldn’t wait too long and give this line a chance to get higher. I recommend playing Indiana -4.