Ohio State goes after a sixth consecutive victory when Minnesota visits for the Big Ten Conference opener Sunday night. The surging Buckeyes could be one of the best college basketball bets today on the moneyline.
Sophomore Bruce Thornton leads the way for Ohio State, which struggled through a 16-19 season in 2022-23 and was picked seventh in the Big Ten preseason coaches poll. The Buckeyes have a win over Alabama during their five-game run.
Minnesota rebounded from a dispiriting 76-58 loss at San Francisco with a resounding 97-64 romp against New Orleans on Thursday. The Golden Gophers shot almost 60% from the field and pounded the Privateers on the boards.
Ohio State shot just 37.5% from the field and lost to Minnesota 70-67 at home in last season’s matchup.
The Buckeyes are +1100 to win the Big Ten in the Las Vegas odds and the Gophers are the longshot at +25000.
Gophers Have Ability To Cash ATS
While the opponent was not at the Big Ten level, Minnesota may have found its top form in Thursday’s victory if you bet online.
“It was really just keeping things simple,” junior guard Elijah Hawkins told the Star Tribune after logging nine assists and one turnover Thursday. “Not trying to make the home-run play all the time.”
Cam Christie led the way with 20 points against New Orleans and the 6-6 freshman has drained 14-of-26 from 3-point range on the season. Dawson Garcia tops Minnesota in scoring (18.3) and rebounding (7.7) after going for 15 and 4 on Thursday.
The Gophers, who also suffered a loss against Missouri (70-68) earlier this season, received 62 points from their bench including Pharrel Payne (17) and Mike Mitchell Jr. (14). That improved depth and efficiency could make them a viable bet at the sportsbook against the Buckeyes.
Updated gamer: #Gophers cut way back on turnovers but still play fast and exciting basketball in thrashing New Orleans: “That’s what it’s got to look like,” Ben Johnson said. @StribSports @GopherMBB @B1GMBBall https://t.co/PNIpWeQkLB pic.twitter.com/FJiUlmOePU
— Marcus R. Fuller (@Marcus_R_Fuller) December 1, 2023
Scoring Depth Makes Buckeyes Good Bet
Ohio State boasts four double-figure scorers and several other contributors as it begins a quest to be a Big Ten contender.
The Buckeyes are 13-point favorites in the NCAA basketball lines for the conference opener after one loss in the first seven games (Texas A&M, 73-66). Ohio State is averaging 80 points and allowing just 40.5% shooting from the field.
Thornton has done a little of everything for Ohio State, averaging 18.3 points and 4.4 assists while draining 41% of his 3-point tries. Roddy Gayle Jr. is adding 14.4 points per contest and shooting almost 56% from the field.
Gayle and Thornton combined for 52 versus Alabama in a 92-81 triumph. Jamison Battle also averages 12.4 points while Felix Okpara chips in 6.1 points, a team-high 6.4 rebounds and 2.1 blocks.
Freshman forward Devin Royal comes in off his first double-digit performance (11) against Central Michigan on Wednesday in an 88-61 win.
Minnesota vs Ohio State Head-to-Head
The Buckeyes recorded five assists in last season’s loss to Minnesota. Garcia poured in 28 points and grabbed nine rebounds in the win.
Battle had 11 points for the Gophers before transferring to Ohio State for this season. Thornton had 10 for the Buckeyes.
Ohio State coach Chris Holtmann is 5-4 versus Minnesota. The Buckeyes won both matchups during the 2021-22 season.
Minnesota vs Ohio State Game Information
- Game: Minnesota (5-2) vs Ohio State (6-1)
- Day/Time: Sunday, Dec. 3, 6:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Value City Arena, Columbus, Ohio
- Minnesota vs Ohio State Live Stream: TBS.com
Minnesota vs Ohio State Betting Lines
Minnesota vs Ohio State Best Bets
This definitely appears to be a game you can split your money with at the sportsbook. Ohio State has a big advantage in scoring depth and in turnover margin as Minnesota comes in with a -3.57 mark and the Buckeyes are +2.3.
Ohio State should win the contest. But Minnesota has enough talent and a blueprint of how it needs to play from Thursday’s contest.
The Gophers are 6-1 ATS and Ohio State 4-3. Bet the Buckeyes to win, but take the double-digit points. It just depends on how much you want to bet. Over 67 ½ total for the first half also seems like a good bet..
Questions of the Day
Who do you think will be the top performers in the Minnesota vs Ohio State game?
Thornton and Garcia have led their respective teams all season and you can expect big efforts from them. Battle may also be extra motivated against his old mates.
Which team has the advantage in the running game?
Ohio State averages 80 points and Minnesota 79.7, but you can expect the Buckeyes to get out on the break more at home.