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How and what to watch for No. 5 Illinois vs. No. 23 Wisconsin

Illinois could be without one of their top two players when they head to Wisconsin, which has struggled against the Big Ten’s best.

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Illinois Fighting Illini guard Ayo Dosunmu drives to the basket as Michigan State Spartans forward Aaron Henry defends during the first half at Jack Breslin Student Events Center. Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE 7:30 a.m.: Ayo Dosumnu, Big Ten Player of The Year candidate, will not play in today’s game per Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports.

The Illinois Fighting Illini will head on the road to take on the Wisconsin Badgers, but they could be without one of their top two players on Saturday.

Illinois (17-6, 13-4 Big Ten) played their last game without star guard Ayo Dosunmu, who is averaging 21 points, 6.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists this season. He was held out of Thursday’s 86-70 home win over the Nebraska Cornhuskers after what is being called a facial injury suffered the previous game. It remains to be seen if he will return to the court on Saturday and it’s not looking great, but big man Kofi Cockburn can carry the Illini to a win. He went for 24 points against Nebraska and is averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds this season.

Wisconsin (16-8, 10-7 Big Ten) could use a big win as the Badgers have struggled against the top teams in the conference. Wisconsin is coming off a 68-51 road win over the Northwestern Wildcats but has not had consecutive wins since mid-January. Backup point guard Trevor Anderson has missed the last two games with an upper body injury and is questionable for Saturday.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch Illinois vs. Wisconsin on Saturday, February 27th at 2:00 p.m. ET on ESPN, or you can stream it via the ESPN app with a cable or streaming service login. If you don’t have a cable login to access the ESPN app, you can get a free trial from YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, AT&T TV Now, FuboTV, or Sling TV to stream it.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends

Point spread: Wisconsin -3.5
Point Total: 135
Money line: Illinois +140, Wisconsin -175

  • Illinois is 8-1 straight up in their last nine games and 10-5 against the spread in their last 15.
  • Wisconsin is 15-2 in their last 17 games against Illinois and 13-4 against the spread in that span.
  • The total went under in each of Wisconsin’s last six games.

The Best Bet

The loss of Dosunmu is a huge blow to the Fighting Illini, but the Badgers haven’t effective at home as of late, dropping three of their last four games in Madison.

135 is a low enough bar for both of these top-25 foes to clear as the Big Ten regular season winds down, so take the over here.

Pick: Over 135

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