- Rutgers (13-9, 9-9 Big Ten) battles Nebraska (6-17, 2-14 Big Ten) on Monday, March 1, at 7pm ET
- The Scarlet Knights and Cornhuskers are both coming off impressive wins entering their lone matchup of the season
- The odds for the game, as well as matchup analysis and a pick, can be found in the article below
In Monday’s Big Ten matchup between Rutgers and Nebraska, the Scarlet Knights are trying to build a bit of momentum entering the conference tournament, while the Cornhuskers are trying to build off of just their second NCAA Division I win in the past three months.
That’s right, Nebraska has been awful in the straight up win/loss column this year, though their home record against the spread is trending upward. Here’s how things look for Monday, where the Cornhuskers are home underdogs:
Rutgers vs Nebraska Odds
|Nebraska||+7 (-110)||N/A||Un 136 (-110)|
|Rutgers||-7 (-110)||N/A||Ov 136 (-110)|
Odds taken Feb. 28th from William Hill
How They’ve Fared Recently
Rutgers has won six of its past nine, and the three losses have been to very worthy opponents: #3 Michigan, #9 Iowa and Maryland (29th in KenPom). Unfortunately, none of their six wins in that span were as impressive, though they did earn a home/road sweep of Indiana (37th in KenPom).
The Scarlet Knights’ defense is superb (12th in adjusted defensive efficiency), thanks in large part to its ability to swat opponents’ shots (12th in D-I in block rate) and take the ball away (25th in D-I in turnover rate). Junior forward Myles Johnson is at the center of that, averaging 2.5 blocks and 1.1 steals per game.
🏀🗣 | TOP 3 PLAYS OF THE GAME
2/24/21 • Rutgers – 74 | Indiana – 63
— Rutgers Basketball 🏀 (@RutgersMBB) February 25, 2021
Rutgers’ most pronounced weakness is its free throw rate (337th in D-I), but Nebraska is not too far ahead in that regard (333rd in D-I).
The Cornhuskers are strongest at defending the 3-pt. shot (31.3 percent against, 54th in D-I). But they are weak in many other ways. Offensively, Nebraska is outside the top 200 in effective field goal percentage, 2-pt. percentage, 3-pt. percentage and offensive block rate.
Their two Big Ten wins have come by a combined five points. Most recently, Nebraska knocked off Minnesota at home — as 2.5-point underdogs — despite committing twice as many turnovers and shooting just 56.2 percent from the free throw line.
— Nebraska Basketball (@HuskerHoops) February 28, 2021
Nebraska is 10-12 against the spread, which isn’t great but at least it’s a marked improvement from their straight up record. At home, the Cornhuskers are 6-7 ATS, including ATS wins in three of their past four home games. The over has hit in four of their past five games overall.
— Rutgers Basketball 🏀 (@RutgersMBB) February 16, 2021
Rutgers is 11-10-1 ATS, which includes a 4-4 ATS mark on the road. They’ve covered in three of their past four games and six of nine — while seeing the under hit in six of eight.
Unfortunately we don’t have a prior matchup from these season to explore, but in the previous two seasons Rutgers and Nebraska have met four times. In that span, Rutgers is 3-1 straight up, and both teams have two ATS wins.
From last season, Nebraska has returned two starters while Rutgers has returned four. We don’t think Nebraska’s recent win over Minnesota means much — they aren’t a strong team. For that reason, Rutgers is the better pick, even ATS, given that they’ve covered in three of four on the road.
Pick: Rutgers -7 (-110)