Thursday night’s much anticipated matchup between No. 3 Michigan State and No. 5 Notre Dame in the Big Ten-ACC Challenge turned into a rout. Sparty led 46-26 at the half before cruising to an 81-63 victory.
Michigan State will try to extend its winning streak to six straight when it opens Big Ten play on Sunday by hosting Nebraska. After the easy win, contrarian bettors should fade Tom Izzo’s team.
Ranked teams that won and covered their previous matchup (like Michigan State) have historically been a bad bet in the next game: 1964-2012-74 (49.4%) ATS, -3.9% ROI.
The results get worse if the team easily covered (by 10 or more points) against a ranked opponent. Michigan State was a 6.5-point favorite over Notre Dame.
After an easy win and cover over a top 5 opponent, ranked teams have gone 31-47-1 (39.7%) ATS in the regular season.
Oddsmakers know casual bettors will be on the Spartans. A majority of spread bets and dollars were on Michigan State against Notre Dame. While there is currently no line available for Sunday’s showdown against the Cornhuskers look for there to be lopsided betting action.
Contrarian bettors should exploit an inflated line and fade Michigan State after an easy win over Notre Dame.