Illinois vs Northwestern Prediction, College Basketball Game Preview

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Illinois vs Northwestern Prediction, College Basketball Game Preview

College Basketball

Illinois vs Northwestern Prediction, College Basketball Game Preview

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Illinois vs Northwestern prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch: Saturday, January 29


Illinois vs Northwestern How To Watch

Date: Saturday, January 29
Game Time: 4:30 ET
Venue: Welsh-Ryan Arena, Evanston, IL
How To Watch: BTN
Record: Illinois (14-5), Northwestern (9-9)
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Illinois vs Northwestern Game Preview


Why Illinois Will Win

Illinois is trying so, so hard to get its mojo back.

This isn’t the 2021 team, and it’s got a big problem forcing mistakes for easy baskets, but it’s amazing on the boards – Kofi Cockburn has a whole lot to do with that – and it started to play defense again in a 56-55 win over Michigan State.

Northwestern might be scoring a bit more, but it can’t guard anything from three.

The Wildcats are getting bombed on way too easily, and now comes Illinois – no one in the Big Ten jacks up more from the outside.

It’s a bad combination. Illinois will shoot a lot of threes, Northwestern is just okay on the boards, there will be too many second chance points, and …

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Why Northwestern Will Win

Illinois turns the ball over way, way too much.

Northwestern might not do a whole lot right overall defensively, and it’s not good at getting to the free throw line, but it’s careful with the ball and doesn’t give up a ton of easy baskets. It makes the possessions count, for the most part.

Yeah, Illinois was strong against Michigan State defensively a few days ago, but the defense couldn’t keep Maryland from scoring, and Purdue was fantastic from the outside.

Northwestern has to come up with the extra pass and hit the threes, it can’t get bogged down in a rebounding war, and …

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What’s Going To Happen

Northwestern has lost seven of its last eight games because it can’t seem to come up with the big basket or the big play at the right time.

It’s also losing because the offense can’t keep up in shootouts of any kind.

The Wildcats might be a whole lot better offensively, but they’re 0-9 on the year when allowing more than 67 points, and 9-0 when it doesn’t.

Illinois has been held to under 67 points just four times. That’s not happening in Evanston.

Illinois vs Northwestern Prediction, Lines

Illinois 77, Northwestern 67
Line: Illinois -3, o/u: 138.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 4

Must See Rating: 2.5

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