Illinois' Kofi Cockburn (21
Illinois' Kofi Cockburn (21) and Michigan's Moussa Diabate vie for a rebound during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Friday, Jan. 14, 2022, in Champaign, Ill. (AP Photo/Michael Allio)

NCAAB BEST BETS FEBRUARY 27

Patrick Werkmeister

Following a perfect 3-0 performance in yesterday’s college basketball best bets, these games are a great opportunity to stay hot. In this jam-packed weekend slate, schools from across all conferences will see some action on this day-long full of games. However, the real action lies in the top 25 programs who are scheduled to play in this slate. As these teams fight it out in their respective conference, it will be interesting to see if the top dogs are able to live up to their reputations and successfully close out this season. Nevertheless, here is what I’m going with for these college hoops games.

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Illinois (-1) @ Michigan
The opening spread for this contest had Illinois as one point road favorites and that is where this line currently sits. While the Illini are a disappointing 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games played, Michigan is also a shoddy 4-6 ATS in their past 10 matches. Additionally, Illinois is 4-1 ATS in their last five games vs the Wolverines. Led by star big-man Kofi Cockburn, Illinois has had a solid year with their 19-8 record. Conversely, Michigan is a bubble team for the NCAA tournament with a 15-11 record, however, they are a formidable Big 10 opponent with solid wins over teams like Purdue led by Sophomore sensation Hunter Dickinson. Last game out, the Illini were narrowly defeated by the Ohio State Buckeyes, 86-83, whereas Michigan kept their postseason dreams alive with a win over Rutgers. Kofi had just 12 points against the Buckeyes, so he will definitely be looking to bounce back vs the Wolverines. However, Michigan is a top 30 team with a lot of talent, so the Illini will certainly not take this opponent lightly. While Illinois defeated the Wolverines in the first meeting by a wide margin, they have also been playing their best basketball and I like them to stay hot. Take the Illini to take care of Michigan on the road.

Ohio State (-4) @ Maryland
The opening line for this contest had Ohio State as four and a half-point road favorite and they are currently favored by four points. While Maryland is an average 5-5 ATS in their last 10 games played, the Buckeyes are an impressive 8-2 ATS in their past 10 contests. Led by star big-man EJ Liddell, Ohio State has had a solid year with their 18-7 record. Conversely, Maryland has had a less than ideal season with their subpar record of 13-15. Last game out, the Buckeyes narrowly defeated Illinois whereas the Terps lost to the Indiana Hoosiers, 74-70. Liddell was just the second leading scorer in their last win, so the Buckeyes clearly have the talent around him to take down any opponent. However, the Big 10 is a conference loaded with talent this year, so the Buckeyes will certainly not take this opponent lightly. While Ohio State defeated the Terps in their first meeting by a wide margin, they have also been playing their best basketball and I like them to stay hot. Take the Buckeyes minus the points to take care of Maryland.

Indiana (-3.5) @ Minnesota
The opening line for this match had Indiana as two and a half-point road favorite but they are currently favored by three and a half-points. Although Indiana is a shoddy 1-5 ATS in their last six games, Minnesota is a dreadful 3-12 SU in their past 15 games. The Hoosiers come into this one as a bubble team for the NCAA tournament with a 17-10 record, however, they are a formidable Big 10 opponent with solid wins over teams like Purdue and Ohio State. With Indiana’s tournament hopes still alive, this game is a must win. Last game out, the Hoosiers defeated Maryland by a 10-point margin whereas the Gophers were defeated by the Wisconsin Badgers. Star Indiana guard Xavier Johnson scored 24 points in the win, among many other solid contributors on the Hoosiers. While Indiana swiftly defeated the Gophers in their first meeting, they have also bounced back quite nicely since their five-game losing streak. Take Indiana minus the points to handle Minnesota on the road.

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