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Breaking down the biggest games of this week's college basketball slate: Ohio State vs. Wisconsin

Breaking down the biggest games of this week's college basketball slate: Ohio State vs. Wisconsin

The 2020 college basketball season is officially back in full swing, and we’ve already seen a bunch of crazy results in a year unlike any other. We’ve got a nice slate this week with plenty of top teams facing off against each other, including a showdown in the Big Ten, and a potential revenge game in the SEC. Without further ado let’s dive into a few of the biggest contests this week.

#15 Ohio State Buckeyes at #10 Wisconsin Badgers – 4 p.m ET (CBS) – Saturday

The Big Ten is absolutely stacked this year, with five teams in the top 16 on Kenpom, including both of these programs. They’re going to have to start separating themselves at some point, and this game is an opportunity to do so. Ohio State has been great on the road recently, winning their last two games away from home against ranked Rutgers and Illinois teams. Can they keep the road-trip magic going here in Madison?

The Badgers have only lost one home game all season, so something has got to give. Wisconsin has faltered a bit recently, getting crushed by 23 points by Michigan on Tuesday only a couple of games after losing to Minnesota. It was also right after going to double overtime to beat Indiana, so it’s safe to say they’ve fallen off a bit since the beginning of the year when they looked like they might challenge Iowa for the best team in the conference. A win here would go a long way toward putting them back on track.

#19 Missouri Tigers at #6 Tennessee Volunteers – 8:30 p.m ET (SECN) – Saturday

Tennessee has looked like the clear top team in the SEC this season, and potentially the conference’s only hope to make a deep run in March Madness with Kentucky having such a down year. The Volunteers still only have one loss this season, and that was in a close game to Alabama. Outside of that one hiccup they’ve mostly cruised, racking up a bunch of wins by large margins. One of those wins was against this same Missouri team by 20 points a few weeks back, so the Tigers will have revenge on their minds.

Missouri is still ranked in the AP poll, but most close followers of college basketball are skeptics. Their advanced metrics aren’t as good as their record, as they’re just 38th on Kenpom. This is their big chance to prove everybody wrong. They did just beat Arkansas by 13 on the road, and they beat Illinois earlier in the year, so it’s not like they’re scrubs. They’ll have a big chip on their shoulder for this one.

#12 Texas Tech Red Raiders at #14 West Virginia Mountaineers – 9 p.m ET (ESPN) – Monday

We’ll wrap up the week with a pivotal Big 12 showdown on Monday night. Baylor has pulled away as the best team in the conference, but Texas Tech and West Virginia are both neck and neck with Texas for the title of closest contender. The Mountaineers just had a string of games postponed due to COVID-19 issues and right before that they had dropped three of five, so I’m really curious to see how they’ll look here in their first test back from the time off.

Texas Tech also just had a couple of postponements but right before that had looked really good, losing a close game to Baylor but also beating Texas on the road. This game is interesting because it features two defensive-oriented teams that like to play at a slow pace. Texas Tech hasn’t shot the ball too well, but they have the third-most efficient defense in the nation per Kenpom’s numbers. Points will be at a premium here in what should be a very physical game.

Pickswise is the home of free NCAA basketball picks and predictions. We will provide predictions on both the side and totals for all of the power-conference and Top 25 games during the 2020-21 season.

Last updated: Wed 20th January 2021

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