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How and what to watch for #9 Wisconsin vs. Rutgers preview

The Badgers take on a wounded Scarlet Knights team in New Jersey in a Big Ten battle.

Wisconsin Badgers guard D’Mitrik Trice dribbles against the Michigan Wolverines in the second half at Crisler Center. Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Wisconsin Badgers are 4-2 in the Big Ten, and they look to bounce back following a tough road loss against the reeling Rutgers Scarlet Knights on Friday night at The RAC in Piscataway, NJ in a Big Ten conference game with postseason implications for both teams.

No. 9 Wisconsin is 10-3 overall, but suffered their second conference setback of the season to the No. 7 Michigan Wolverines in a 77-54 blowout on Tuesday night in Ann Arbor. The Badgers start five seniors, led by point guard D’Mitrik Trice who enters with 15.2 points, 3.5 assists, and 3.2 rebounds a contest.

They are ninth in the country at 40.5% from three-point range, and hold opponents to just 34.6% from downtown. But that was an issue on Tuesday as the were just 9-28 on threes, with Michigan hitting 9-16 and shooting 51.6% from the field overall.

Rutgers was ranked as high as No. 11 during Christmas this season, but have fallen out of the polls and possibly out of NCAA at-large bid range with three straight losses. At 7-4 overall and 3-4 in the Big Ten, there’s still plenty of time to play back into contention. Junior guard and local New Jersey product Ron Harper makes them go, with 20.1 points per game to go with 6.2 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game.

Despite being one of the smaller teams in a major conference, Rutgers attacks defensively with 5.1 blocks per game, good for 16th in America.

Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming

You can watch #9 Wisconsin vs. Rutgers on Friday, January 15th at 9:00 p.m. ET on FS1, or you can watch via the Fox Sports Go app with a cable or streaming service login.

Point Spread, Totals, Odds, Trends*

Point spread: Wisconsin (-3) vs. Rutgers
Point Total: 135
Money line: Wisconsin (-159) vs. Rutgers (+130)

* Game not available in New Jersey at DraftKings Sportsbook due to state regulations.

Betting Splits

Wisconsin: (83% of action, 85% of bets)
Rutgers: (17% of action, 15% of bets)

The Best Bet

Wisconsin should bounce back from a tough loss at Ann Arbor, and the early season vision for Rutgers might not be coming to fruition. The Badgers get back on track in this one, leaving Rutgers needing to pull it together to get back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1991.

Pick: Wisconsin -3

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