Michigan vs. Purdue preview: Betting trends, advanced stats analysis
Michigan and Purdue will face off on Tuesday night in a matchup of two Big Ten teams who appear to be heading in opposite directions.
Purdue has won 3 games in a row and looks like the clear favorite in the Big Ten as the calendar moves toward late-January. On the other side, Michigan is just 2-5 in Big Ten play and has lost 6 of its last 7 games. The Wolverines haven’t won the road since beating Iowa on Dec. 10.
Let’s break down this matchup:
Michigan vs. Purdue Betting Odds
Spread: Purdue -17.5 (ESPN Bet)
Total: Over/Under 153.5 points (ESPN Bet)
Betting trends to know for Michigan
- 6-12 against the spread
- 2-2 against the spread on the road
- 2-4 against the spread as an underdog
- 2-5 against the spread with 4+ days off
- 1-2 against the spread with a rest advantage
It’s hard (maybe impossible) to find any sort of positive trend with Michigan this season. The Wolverines have been lousy against the number at home, on the road, as the favorite and as the underdog. Even in this spot, where the Wolverines have a significant rest advantage over Purdue, Michigan has under-performed in limited opportunities this season.
Betting trends to know for Purdue
- 11-6-2 against the spread
- 4-4-1 against the spread at home
- 10-6-2 against the spread as the favorite
- 5-5 against the spread with 2-3 days off
- 4-4-1 against the spread as a double-digit favorite
The Boilermakers have been amongst the best teams in the country straight up this season, but they’ve been very good against the spread as well. They are catching Michigan in a tough spot, as they’ll suit up on just 2 days’ rest on Tuesday night. This will be the 5th time this season that Purdue has been favored by at least 9.5 points over a Big Ten opponent. The Boilermakers went 2-2 against the spread in their previous 4 opportunities.
3 notes for the game
No Dug McDaniel
Dug McDaniel is not expected to play in this game as he continues to serve a road-game-only suspension. McDaniel is arguably Michigan’s best perimeter player and he leads the Wolverines with a 25.6% usage rate, so his absence will have a massive impact on this game.
This is only the 2nd of 6 road games that McDaniel is expected to miss as part of his suspension. In Michigan’s first game without McDaniel, the Wolverines fell to Maryland 64-57 back on Jan. 11. Jaelin Llewellyn, who has otherwise been out of Michigan’s rotation for the most part this season, started in place of McDaniel against the Terps. He played a season-high 33 minutes in that game, but went just 3-for-11 from the field and had 3 turnovers.
In Michigan’s loss to Maryland, it was Olivier Nkamhoua who assumed a noticeably-larger offensive role without McDaniel in the lineup. Nkamhoua took 16 field goal attempts in that game, up from his average of about 12 for the rest of the season. Nkamhoua is quietly having a nice season for Michigan as he’s averaging 17 points and 7 rebounds per game while shooting 53.5% from the floor and 37.5% from 3-point range.
No one can stop Zach Edey
Excellence has been the expectation for Zach Edey for awhile now, but he’s on a really impressive hot streak right now — even by his standards.
Since Purdue’s stunning loss to Nebraska on Jan. 9, Edey has been on a tear. In those 3 contests, he’s averaging 31 points and 17 rebounds per game. He’s shooting 62% from the field over that stretch and has been to the line an average of 13.7 times against a trio of Big Ten opponents (Penn State, Indiana and Iowa). None of those teams light the world on fire defensively, but they are all in the top-130 in adjusted defensive efficiency per KenPom. Michigan, for context, ranks No. 139 in that category entering Tuesday’s slate of games.
For the season, Edey is averaging 23 points, 11 rebounds and over 2 blocks per game. He’s a leading candidate to win the Naismith Award for the second year in a row — a feat which hasn’t been accomplished since Ralph Sampson won 3 in a row for Virginia from 1981-83.
There’s not much evidence that Michigan will be able to slow Edey down. Michigan’s primary centers — Nkamhoua and Tarris Reed — are both undersized compared to the 7-foot-4 Edey. Reed will likely start the game with the Edey assignment, but he’s only been playing about 24 minutes per game this season. That would likely leave the 6-foot-9, 235-pound Nkamhoua with the responsibility of checking Edey in the post.
It’s hard to find a weakness for Purdue
There are no obvious weaknesses in Purdue’s statistical profile. The Boilermakers are No. 2 in adjusted offensive efficiency and No. 13 in adjusted defensive efficiency, per KenPom. They’re one of the best 3-point shooting teams in the country and are also efficient from 2-point range as well. From a team makeup perspective, Purdue looks solid. Per KenPom’s numbers, this team ranks 80th in Division 1 experience, 39th in height and 9th in minutes continuity.
Even Purdue’s one bad loss this season (against Nebraska) looks like it was a fluke on paper. The Huskers went 13-of-24 from 3-point range in that game (54%) while Purdue had just an average game offensively. If the blueprint for upsetting Purdue is making over 50% of your 3-pointers and holding Edey to 10 points and 7 rebounds, that’s more of prayer than an actionable plan. Northwestern, who handed Purdue its first loss of the year back on Dec. 1, also shot 50% from beyond the arc.
1 pick for this game
Zach Edey over 13.5 rebounds (+100 on ESPN Bet). This is a high number, but I think it’s a decent price considering the matchup. Michigan is not a good defensive rebounding team (it ranks No. 236 nationally per KenPom) and Edey is one of college basketball’s most dominant rebounders. His defensive rebounding rate (26.4%) and offensive rebounding rate (16.6%) are both elite nationally. Purdue might have tired legs as this its 4th game in the last 11 days, which would create more rebounding opportunities for Edey. He’s cleared 13.5 rebounds in 4 of his last 5 games.