INDIANA HOOSIERS (13-1)
at PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS (8-5)
Tip-off: Monday, 7:00 p.m. ET
Line: Indiana -16, Total: 138
No. 5 Indiana aims for its fifth straight win when it visits Penn State on Monday night.
The Hoosiers recovered nicely from their lone defeat this season (to No. 14 Butler in OT) with three straight lopsided wins by 39, 36, and 34 points, but they failed to cover in a tight 69-65 win at Iowa in their last game on New Year's Eve. The Nittany Lions are 3-0 ATS (4-1 SU) in their past five games, having lost to 18-point favorite Wisconsin by just nine points their last time out on Thursday. Indiana has won the past three meetings (2-0-1 ATS) in this series with the most recent win coming last March, 75-58.
Can Indiana blow out Penn State on Monday night? For the answer, connect to College Basketball Best Bets for all the Expert picks throughout the entire 2012-13 season. The StatFox experts are a collective 53% ATS (196-176-8) in college basketball Best Bets for the season, led by StatFox Gary, who sits at 60.3% ATS (47-31) for the season, while Dave is at 54% ATS (72-61-3) on the year.
The Hoosiers lead the nation with 87.9 PPG, thanks to a sparkling 51.0% FG (7th in D-I). They dish out 17.5 APG (11th in nation), while dominating the glass as well (42.5 RPG, 8th in D-I). Speaking of great shooting, SG Victor Oladipo is scoring at a 67.3% FG clip (10th in nation), including 45.5% on threes. He is also the leader on the defensive end with an impressive 2.4 SPG (T-21st in D-I), which helps makes up for having more turnovers (32) than assists (31) this season. Sophomore C Cody Zeller leads Indiana in both scoring (16.6 PPG) and rebounding (8.1 RPG), shooting a hefty 62.2% from the floor. PF Christian Watford (12.5 PPG) also provides muscle down low with 6.4 RPG. Both Zeller (19 pts, 10 reb) and Watford (14 pts, 10 reb) had double-doubles when Indiana last faced Penn State, a 75-58 win in last year's Big Ten Tournament. PG Jordan Hulls also had a huge performance in that game, pumping in a team-high 20 points on 7-of-10 FG (4-of-6 threes). This season, Hulls is knocking down threes at an impressive 51.4% clip (19th in D-I), but he's coming off a dreadful zero-point performance (0-for-10 FG, 0-for-4 threes) in the tight win at Iowa one week ago. Junior SF Will Sheehey (12.4 PPG) has been consistently strong all season, scoring at least a dozen points in eight of his past nine games.
Penn State is a horrible offensive basketball team, scoring 64.3 PPG (252nd in D-I) on 41.2% FG (262nd in nation), due mostly to a pathetic 9.5 APG (12th-fewest in D-I). Leading scorer Tim Frazier went down with a season-ending knee injury in the fourth game of the season, which has put most of the scoring onus on sophomore D.J. Newbill (15.5 PPG) and junior Jermaine Marshall (14.9 PPG). Newbill makes just 42.9% FG and 24% threes, but Marshall has averaged 17.0 PPG since Frazier went down. Marshall kept Penn State close in the 60-51 loss at Wisconsin last Thursday, draining a season-high 64.3% FG (9-of-14). Sophomore F Ross Travis will try his best with the Hoosiers big men, as he leads PSU with 7.7 RPG, posting his fourth double-digit rebounding game last Thursday. Freshman F Brandon Taylor (7.4 PPG) leads the team in long-range shooting with a solid 39.6% clip, but his teammates make just 26.7% of their threes combined this season.