(3% play) ILLINOIS STATE -4.5 (vs. Southern Illinois) – 7:00 pm ET #534
Southern Illinois has been a surprise this season; the Salukis come into tonight’s game at Illinois State with a a 21-8 SU record. Southern Illinois has posted their first winning season since 2008, and their first 20-plus win season in nine years. The Salukis will be playing a back-to-back road set here, and it will be just the second time in conference play this season. The last time they were in this situation, Southern Illinois played poorly in the second road game as they lost by 21 points after shooting just 30.6% (19-62) from the field and 26.1% (6-23) from three-point land. The Salukis beat Illinois State 81-78 on their home court earlier this season, but they needed to rally from a 6-point halftime deficit to win that game. Southern Illinois gave up 78 points to the Redbirds on their home court, and they’ll be hard-pressed to slow Illinois State down in tonight’s game, especially since the Salukis have allowed 70.6 points per game on 49% shooting from the field over their last five games.
Illinois State returns home off a 75-66 loss at Northern Iowa on Saturday afternoon. That game can be easily dismissed as Northern Iowa was playing with revenge after losing 76-67 to Illinois State earlier this season. The Redbirds are now back at home, and we expect a strong bounce back performance tonight, especially with this being the last home game for three starting seniors. Illinois State is 12-3 SU at home where they are holding opponents to just 62 points per game on 42.3% shooting from the field and 31.2% shooting from three-point land. We expect a peak performance by Illinois State here, so we’ll lay the points with the Redbirds in this game on Wednesday night.
Play ILLINOIS STATE (-) as a 3% play.