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Illinois vs Penn State Odds, Predictions, Player Props & Betting Promos (Feb. 21)

Sascha Paruk

by Sascha Paruk in College Basketball

Updated Feb 21, 2024 · 9:48 AM PST

Illinois Fighting Illini guard Terrence Shannon Jr jumping after a loose ball
Feb 17, 2024; College Park, Maryland, USA; Maryland Terrapins head coach Kevin Willard grabs loose ball in front of Illinois Fighting Illini guard Terrence Shannon Jr. (0) during the first half at Xfinity Center. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
  • The #12 Illinois Fighting Illini visit the Penn State Nittany Lions on Wednesday night in University Park, PA
  • Illinois will move within a game of Purdue at the top of the Big Ten standings with a win
  • See the Illinois vs Penn State odds, predictions, player props, and best betting promos

Still very much in the hunt for the Big 12 regular-season title, #12 Illinois (19-6, 10-4 Big Ten, 4-4 away, 13-9-3 ATS) travels to the Bryce Jordan Center for a date with Penn State (12-14, 6-9 Big Ten, 9-4 home, 12-14 ATS) at 6:30 pm ET on Wednesday, Feb. 21.

Despite Penn State’s solid 9-4 record at home this season (plus a win over Michigan in Philadelphia), the Illini are listed as big 7.5-point road favorites in today’s college basketball odds.

Illinois vs Penn State Odds

Team Spread Moneyline Total
Illinois Fighting Illini -7.5 (-110) -333 Over 157.5 (-110)
Penn State Nittany Lions +7.5 (-110) +270 Under 157.5 (-110)

Illinois is also a heavy -333 road favorite on the moneyline while Penn State comes back as a +270 underdog to win straight-up. The game total is at 157.5. Penn State is 15-10-1 over/under. Illinois is 17-8, which is tied for the ninth-best over rate in Division I.

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At +3300, Illinois is just outside the top-ten favorites in the 2024 March Madness odds. Penn State will need a miracle run to the Big Ten Tournament title to earn a berth in the NCAA Tournament.

Illinois Wins Five of Six to Keep Pace with Purdue

Illinois started Big Ten play just 5-3 this season, but the Illini have since won five of six to climb to second in the conference standings and stay within striking distance of Purdue (12-3). With Purdue’s loss at Ohio State last time out, Illinois can move within a game of the Boilermakers at the top of the standings with a home game against Purdue still on the schedule (March 5).

The Illini earned their best road win of the season last Saturday, beating Maryland 86-80 on the back of a 27-point, four-block performance from 6’6 guard Terrance Shannon.  The senior is among the top ten in the nation in scoring at 21.4 PPG, which is also second among players from Power Six conferences (trailing only Purdue’s Zach Edey at 23.2 PPG).

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The 85-point outburst in College Park was nothing new for the Illini. Brad Underwood’s team is fifth in offensive efficiency while playing at the 65th-fastest tempo in the country. They are averaging 83.1 PPG as a team (25th) with Marcus Domask (15.6 PPG), Coleman Hawkins (12.4 PPG, and Quincy Guerrier (10.6 PPG) adding valuable secondary scoring.

Illinois doesn’t shoot particularly well from three (34.3%, 153rd) but is excellent from inside the arc (54.4%, 39th) and generates a lot of offensive rebounds (35.6%, 20th).


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Penn State Enters Wednesday on Three-Game Losing Streak

The Nittanies had gutted their way back to .500 in Big Ten play with a  three-game win streak from Jan. 31 to Feb. 8. But that’s a distant memory now thanks to a three-game losing streak which has dropped Penn State to just 6-9 in conference play at 12-14 overall.

After dismissing leading scorer Kanye Clary from the team for undisclosed reasons, Mike Rhoades’ team played arguably its worst game of the entire season last time out, losing 68-49 at Nebraska. That was the first time all season that the Nittanies hadn’t cracked 60 points, and they didn’t even reach 50. Penn State shot just 33.3% from the field and 21.7% from three while losing the rebounding battle 42-31. Nebraska managed a 19-point win despite shooting just 19% from beyond the arc itself.

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Generally this season, Penn State’s offense had been respectable, averaging 74.8 PPG (170th) while sitting 96th in offensive efficiency.  But a lot of that was thanks to Clary (16.7 PPG, 2.7 AGP), who had taken huge strides in his second season.

Now VCU transfer Ace Baldwin Jr (14.0 PPG, 5.3 APG) will have to shoulder a massive load. He’s the only other player on the team averaging in double-figures this season.

Illinois vs Penn State Player Props

Player Points Rebounds Assists Three-Pointers Made
Ace Baldwin Jr (PSU) 17.5 (Ov -100 | Un -125) 2.5 (Ov -175 | Un +135) 6.5 (Ov -130 | Un -100) 1.5 (Ov +115 | Un -150)
Coleman Hawkins (ILL) 13.5 (Ov -110 | Un -120) 6.5 (Ov -120 | Un -105) 3.5 (Ov +130 | Un -170) 1.5 (Ov -130| Un -100)
D’Marco Dunn (PSU) 9.5 (Ov -135 | Un +105) 2.5 (Ov -175 | Un +135) OFF 1.5 (Ov +170 | Un -225)
Marcus Domask (ILL) 16.5 (Ov -105 | Un -125) 4.5 (Ov -155 | Un +120) 3.5 (Ov -160 | Un +120) 1.5 (Ov -105| Un -125)
Nick Kern (PSU) 10.5 (Ov -130 | Un -100) 3.5 (Ov -170 | Un +130) OFF OFF
Qudus Webb (PSU) 9.5 (Ov -105 | Un -125) 7.5 (Ov -100 | Un -130) OFF OFF
Quincy Guerrier (ILL) 8.5 (Ov -120 | Un -105) 6.5 (Ov -110 | Un -115) OFF 1.5 (Ov +175 | Un -230)
Terrence Shannon Jr (ILL) 20.5 (Ov -120 | Un -105) 4.5 (Ov +115 | Un -150) 4.5 (Ov +110 | Un -145) 2.5 (Ov +110 | Un -140)
Zach Hicks (PSU) 10.5 (Ov -105 | Un -125) 4.5 (Ov -140 | Un +105) OFF 1.5 (Ov -195 | Un +150)

College basketball player props from DraftKings.

Shannon is listed at 20.5 over/under, almost a full point under his season average of 21.4 PPG. Baldwin is the highest Penn State player at 17.5 PPG. That number is 3.5 points higher than his season average, motivated both by the absence of leading scorer Clary and Illinois’ fast pace.

Illinois vs Penn State Prediction

The early returns for Penn State sans Clary were dismal. Certainly, some regression was expected, but scoring just 49 points against Nebraska was a travesty.

Illinois is not the team you want to see come to town when your offense is in shambles. The Illini haven’t been great in true road games this season, but their four road setbacks all game against significantly better teams (86-79 at Tennessee, 83-78 at Purdue, 96-91 OT at Northwestern, and 88-80 at Michigan State). They own an 18-point win at Rutgers, a 15-point win at Michigan, a 12-point win at Ohio State, and Saturday’s five-point win at Maryland.

On paper, this has another lopsided Illinois win written all over it.

Ill vs PSU pick: Illinois -7.5 (-110)

Sascha Paruk’s 2023-24 NCAAM betting record:

  • ATS: 16-13 (+1.52 units)
  • Moneyline: 2-5 (-3.48 units)
  • Over/Under: 0-1 (-1.00 units)
  • Player props: 2-2 (+0.78 units)

All wagers one unit unless expressly stated otherwise.

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