Illinois’ Kofi Cockburn shoots a free throw during the first half of the team’s NCAA college basketball game against Ohio State on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022, in Champaign, Ill. (AP Photo/Michael Allio)
No. 15 Illinois takes on Michigan Sunday, February 27th at 2pm ET in Ann Arbor
The Fighting Illini are coming off an 86-83 home loss to No. 22 Ohio State
See the current Illinois vs Michigan odds, point spread, and game total, plus predictions
The No. 15 Illinois Fighting Illini (19-8, 12-5 Big Ten) — who have alternated wins and losses in their previous six games — take on the Michigan Wolverines (15-11, 9-7 Big Ten) in college basketball on Sunday at Crisler Arena.
Tip-off is at 2pm ET on CBS. Illinois is a 1-point favorite over Michigan, while the total is 132.
Illinois vs Michigan Odds
O 141.5 (-110)
U 141.5 (-110)
Odds as of February 26th, 2022 at DraftKings
Illinois and Michigan Recent Results
The Fighting Illini are projected to be a No. 4 seed in the Midwest Region when the NCAA Tournament tips offs next month according to the latest March Madness bracket projection, while Michigan is expected to be a No. 7 seed in the South.
Both programs have decent payouts in the odds to make the Final Four.
Brad Underwood was ejected for the first time in his five seasons in Champaign late in the second half of a three-point defeat to the Buckeyes. Illini guard Alfonso Plummer scored 26 points in the loss, while Kofi Cockburn struggled. Illinois’ big man could only muster 12 points on 5-of-15 shooting from the field before fouling out.
Former longtime Saint Joseph’s head coach and current Michigan assistant Phil Martelli saw freshman star Caleb Houston collect 13 of his career-high 21 in the second half in a nine-point win over the Scarlet Knights in Big Blue’s first of five games without suspended head coach Juwan Howard.
Illinois vs Michigan Head-to-Head
The Fighting Illini have had the better of the Wolverines recently, winning four straight over the Maize and Blue. But, prior to the current run, it was Michigan that had defeated Illinois in four straight. Underwood’s current run of success includes a 68-53 victory over Michigan in Champaign on Jan. 14.
Cockburn had a game-high 21 and also grabbed 10 rebounds in that one — which Hunter Dickinson did not play. in. Michigan was led by senior guard DeVante’ Jones’ 17 points, while not other Wolverine player had more than nine points.
The Illini have a unique ability to be comfortable playing at a variety of paces. They can keep opponents contained and play games in the 50s, like they did against Michigan the first time. They can pick up pace and play in the 80s like they did Thursday against Ohio State.
With Plummer emboldened by his outing against the Bucks and Cockburn hungry to bounce back from a disappointing effort against OSU — knowing he performed well against UM last month — look for Illinois to primed for a season sweep.
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Michigan Betting Outlook
While the Wolves have gone 8-4 straight up over the last dozen games, they’ve only managed to go .500 (6-6) in that timeframe. However, one of those victories was their most recent outing on Wednesday.
Game 26: Roll the Tape
〽️🏀 | #GoBlue pic.twitter.com/sH4mdd8fuT
— Michigan Men’s Basketball (@umichbball) February 25, 2022
The winning effort on Wednesday against the Scarlet Knights — who lost their second straight after four consecutive victories over ranked opponents — was exactly why Martelli is part of Michigan’s staff.
With Howard out the rest of the regular season due to the handshake-line altercation in Madison last Sunday, Michigan fans can rest easy knowing they have a potential Hall of Famer at the helm down the stretch.
Dickinson missed the last Illinois game due to COVID-19 after effects, but will be ready to go Sunday, putting Michigan at full-strength. The sophomore leads UM with 18.0 points per game and 8.2 rebounds per game.
With the always-dangerous Houston, who leads the team in three point makes, lurking beyond the arc and Eli Brooks, who has ripped off six straight double-figure scoring efforts, Michigan should be able to score much more than the 53 it put up the last time these two squads met.
Illinois vs Michigan Prediction
Michigan is 9-3 at home, while Illinois is 6-4 on the road.
With Cockburn and Dickinson potentially neutralizing each other, the supporting casts will be the difference. And Illinois’ roster is deeper.
Pick: Illinois -1 (-110)