Illinois Fighting Illini guard Brandon Paul (3) is defended by Ohio State Buckeyes guard Lenzelle Smith Jr. (32) during the second half at Assembly Hall. Illinois defeated Ohio State 74-55. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports
(KSDK Sports) -- Illinois (14-5, 1-4) has lost five of seven after its 12-0 start and fallen near the bottom of the Big Ten. Their most recent loss to Northwestern cost them their Top 25 ranking in both major polls.
The Illinois Fighting Illini appear to be headed in the wrong direction as they have lost three games in a row. As a team Illinois is averaging 72.8 points, 10.8 assists, and they are shooting 43 percent while defensively they are allowing 66.4 points, 12.4 assists, and their opponents are shooting 41.9 percent. Brandon Paul is averaging 18.2 points, Tracy Abrams is averaging 11.9 points, and D.J. Richardson is averaging 10.8 points. Illinois fell apart at the end of last season and they are looking to avoid the same fate this time around.
Illinois faces the Nebraska Cornhuskers who are coming off of their first Big Ten win as they knocked off Penn State on Saturday. The Huskers are 7-4 at home this season but just 1-5 in the Big 10 but they have also played the ninth ranked schedule in the country.
As a team Nebraska is averaging 58.6 points, 10.3 assists, and they are shooting 41.4 percent while defensively they are allowing 61.3 points, 10.2 assists, and their opponents are shooting 42.8 percent. Ray Gallegos is averaging 13.2 points, Dylan Talley is averaging 12.9 points and 5.5 rebounds, and Brandon Ubel is averaging 12.1 points and 6.8 rebounds. Nebraska will be looking to build off of the momentum of their win on Saturday.
Nebraska is 4-1 against the spread against the Big Ten, 3-8 against the spread following a cover, and 4-1 against the spread against a team with a winning record. Illinois is 7-19 against the spread against the Big Ten, 3-13 against the spread in their last 16 road games, and 0-4 against the spread following a double digit home loss.