Syracuse at Illinois odds, picks and predictions
The Syracuse Orange (3-3) and No. 17 Illinois Fighting Illini (5-1) meet Tuesday in Champaign as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Opening tip at the State Farm Center is at 7:30 p.m. ET (ESPN). Below, we analyze Tipico Sportsbook's lines around the Syracuse vs. Illinoisodds, and make our expert college basketball picks, predictions and bets.
Syracuse has lost back-to-back close games. On Saturday, the favored-by-9.5 Orange were downed by Bryant 73-72 after losing 76-69 in overtime to St. John's the game before. SU shot 39.1% from 3-point range in its first 4 games; it has shot just 22.5% in 2 games since.
The Fighting Illini lost 70-61 to No. 3 Virginia on Nov. 20, but bounced back Friday as a -32.5 favorite in a 92-59 win over Lindenwood. Fast-paced Illinois has scored over 85 points in 4 of 6 games.
Rankings courtesy of the USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll.
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Syracuse at Illinois odds
Provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 7:31 a.m. ET.
- Moneyline: Syracuse +520 (bet $100 to win $520) | Illinois -850 (bet $850 to win $100)
- Against the spread (ATS): Syracuse +12.5 (-115) | Illinois -12.5 (-105)
- Over/Under (O/U): 145.5 (O: -105 | U: -115)
Syracuse at Illinois picks and predictions
Illinois 77, Syracuse 67
PASS. Unless you think Syracuse can win there there's nothing here.
The Fighting Illini are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games following a straight-up win. This UI bunch is new: Only 3 players returned from last year's team and none were starters. And their turnover rate is Syracuse's way to staying within a dozen points, if not to victory. KenPom pegs Illinois's turnover rate as 306th in the nation.
Look for Syracuse to leverage those miscues, its slower pace, and its unique 2-3 defense in keeping this game within a couple or 3 possessions for much of the way. In their last 5 Quadrant-1 games last season, the Orange logged 1 blowout loss (against Duke) and 4 losses of 12 points or closer.
BACK SYRACUSE +12.5 (-115).
Peg 3-happy Illinois as being due some regression in its shooting numbers both beyond and in front of the perimeter arc. UI has played a couple of slow teams (Virginia, Missouri-Kansas City) and SU has played a couple rabbit fives (Bryant, St. John's). The combined record on the totals has the Under at 4-0.
TAKE THE UNDER 145.5 (-115).
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