Monday, January 16 will see the Big Ten in action as the Illinois Fighting Illini will go on the road to face the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Tip-off from Williams Arena in Minneapolis, Minnesota is set for 6 p.m. ET, and the game will air on the Big Ten Network.
Let’s take a look at the odds and lines on DraftKings Sportsbook and make some picks.
Illinois vs. Minnesota odds
Spread: Illinois -9
Moneyline: Illinois -425, Minnesota +340
Illinois (12-5, 3-3 Big Ten) will take a three-game win streak into this matchup. The Fighting Illini are coming off a week that saw them take down No. 14 Wisconsin, Nebraska and Michigan State. They have won all three games by at least 10 points and have started building momentum. Against the Spartans, the Illini were down 37-33 at halftime but used a 20-point, seven rebound game from forward Dain Dainja to mount and maintain a comeback.
Minnesota (7-8, 1-4 Big Ten) heads into this game at the bottom of the Big Ten standings. The Golden Gophers only played two games last week. In the first, they fell to Nebraska by two points in overtime. They were able to rebound and pick up a big win against Ohio State on Thursday. Minnesota tried to blow the late lead but hit free throws when it counted in the last 30 seconds to secure the three-point victory.
The Pick: Illinois -9
This is a large spread to cover, but the Fighting Illini have simply been playing better basketball of late. Even if they get down early, they have used key adjustments to claw their way back into games and end up with The Golden Gophers have gotten off to a slow start in conference play, and this matchup won’t help them. Dainja and teammate Matthew Mayer are a tough duo to deal with and should help Illinois cover this spread.