Nebraska vs. Ohio State prediction ATS, player props, odds for Thursday, Feb. 29, Big Ten basketball

Ohio State hosts Nebraska tonight looking to avenge an 83-69 defeat in the season’s first matchup. Since firing head coach Chris Holtman on Feb. 14, interim head coach Jake Diebler has led the Buckeyes to a 2-1 record, including a win over Purdue and a buzzer-beating win over Michigan State.

The Buckeyes are 11-16-1 against the spread this season and 2-1 covering the spread in their last three. The two spread covers were also outright wins as underdogs. In each of those wins, the Buckeyes defense was strong, with the UNDER for total points hitting.

The Cornhuskers are quietly putting together one of the best seasons in program history. Nebraska is 18-10 against the spread this season and has been excellent in the most recent run of matchups, winning and covering in four straight. The defense has been fantastic, hitting the UNDER for total points in three of four. 

With Nebraska winning the first meeting at home, the Buckeyes will have the advantage of hosting tonight’s rematch. Here is the Nebraska vs. Ohio State betting news, props and a prediction for tonight’s Big Ten Conference matchup. The game tips off at 6:30 p.m. on FS1.

Live odds for Nebraska vs. Ohio State

Here are the spread, moneyline and total points live odds for Nebraska vs. Ohio State at the best online sportsbooks.

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Nebraska Cornhuskers betting news

The Cornhuskers have never won a game in the NCAA Tournament, and it looks like this year’s squad may have a chance to break the streak. Nebraska has seven NCAA Tournament appearances but only once since 2000 (2014) and has not yet made it to the big dance under Fred Hoiberg. The former Chicago Bulls head coach took over a decent program that had gone 22-11 and 19-17 in the two seasons before the start of his tenure.

Yet former coach Tim Miles peaked in his second season when Nebraska made the NCAA Tournament but never again made it Miles’ last five seasons. When Hoiberg took over, it was a complete rebuild, and Nebraska has been patient, with each season getting a little better. He had seven wins in his first two seasons, followed by 10 and 16, and he has already over 20 this season. With a decent finish, the Cornhuskers stand a solid chance to make the NCAA Tournament.

They play a strong brand of balanced basketball, ranking 39th for adjusted offensive efficiency and 32nd for adjusted defensive efficiency on KenPom. Nebraska boasts four players averaging 12-plus points per game, led by Kesei Tominaga (14.0 PPG), who has the uncanny ability to hit many difficult shots. He is surrounded by a strong supporting cast including forwards Rienk Mast (12.9 PPG & 7.8 RPG) and Juwan Gary (12.1 PPG, 6.0 RPG) and a solid combo guard, Brice Williams (12.9 PPG). Nebraska is a tough team to defend with their diverse offensive options.

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Ohio State Buckeyes betting news

The Buckeyes’ season has been nothing short of a disappointment, ranking 35th for adjusted offensive efficiency and a dreadful 102nd for defensive adjusted efficiency on KenPom. Yet since the firing of Holtman, Ohio State has looked significantly improved on defense and has been playing a lot harder.

At 16-12, the Buckeyes are a longshot to make the NCAA Tournament. To give themselves a fighting chance, they must continue to play better defense and get their top scorers to continue delivering. Bruce Thornton, the team’s leading scorer (16.2 PPG), scored 25 and 22 points in the first two games under Diebler before an off game with only 11 points against Michigan State.

The game against the Spartans was a defensive battle, and the Buckeyes found a way to win. If Thornton can get back to threatening 20 points, while the Buckeyes’ two other leading scorers, Jamison Battle (14.2 PPG) and Roddy Gayle Jr. (13.7 PPG), get their averages, winning at home tonight seems likely.

Nebraska vs. Ohio State props at FanDuel Sportsbook

Here are some of the top prop markets for Nebraska vs. Ohio State from FanDuel Sportsbook.

  • First-half moneyline: Nebraska (+116) vs. Ohio State (-142)
  • First-half spread: Nebraska +1.5 (-115) vs. Ohio State -1.5 (-105)
  • First-half 68.5 total points OVER (-112) / UNDER (-112)
  • Ohio State 73.5 total team points OVER (-114) / UNDER (-106)
  • Nebraska 71.5 total team points OVER (-105) / UNDER (-115)
  • two or more threes made in the first three minutes of the game: YES (+172) / NO (-225)
  • Both teams to score in the first two minutes of the game: YES (-230) / NO (+176)
  • 2.5 total points scored in first minute of the game OVER (+112) / UNDER (-148)

Nebraska vs. Ohio State prediction: Buckeyes continue strong play, winning at home

Ohio State has always had talent but often appeared disinterested and did not play up to their capabilities. That has changed since their head coach was fired, and the team has finally played like they are capable. Expect that better effort to continue tonight at home against Nebraska.

Pick: Ohio State

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