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How to Watch Northwestern vs. Michigan: Preview, TV channel, streaming, radio, line

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The Wildcats will look to avoid a season sweep at the hands of the Wolverines.

NCAA Basketball: Northwestern at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

For the second time in the last nine days, Northwestern and Michigan are set to face off on the hardwood. The Wildcats were shut down offensively in a 58-47 loss in Ann Arbor last Monday, and will look to exact some revenge at Allstate Arena tonight.

Northwestern (14-10, 5-6 Big Ten) is coming off a win in Madison and can get back to .500 in conference play for the first time since January 2nd with a victory. No. 20 Michigan (19-6, 8-4) can continue to strengthen its strong at-large profile and potentially take over sole possession of fourth place in the Big Ten if it beats NU again.

The Wolverines are tied with fellow 8-4 team Nebraska, which goes on the road to face Minnesota tonight.

Last time these teams met...it wasn’t pretty. Northwestern’s matchup zone worked to perfect against John Beilein’s squad in the first half, but the Cats couldn’t take advantage on the other end and trailed 21-19 after 20 minutes. NU hung around for a while in the second half, but Michigan ultimately pulled away and won in relatively stress-free fashion.

Northwestern turned the ball over 16 times and shot 25 percent from deep against UM’s top-25 defense; the Wildcats were generally unable to get anything going to the rim and were held under 50 points for the third time as a result.

So, will Tuesday night be different?

The change in venue could help. Northwestern returns to Rosemont after a three-game road trip, and even though the atmosphere is unlikely to provide much of a boost, it will at least be neutral and away from the raucous Crisler Center. Chris Collins and Co. are 3-2 in Big Ten games at Allstate compared to 2-4 on the road.

Additionally, the Cats are very familiar with what Michigan does on both ends (although that obviously goes both ways). Whether or not Northwestern can get anything going on offense the second time around will say a lot about its coaching staff and veteran starters. Hopefully they’ve had a couple strong practices since beating the Badgers on Thursday.

Scottie Lindsey was the only NU player in double figures in the last meeting, dropping 15. Bryant McIntosh and Vic Law combined to shoot 5-for-18 from the floor. That won’t cut it tonight.

Kenpom comparison

Stat Northwestern rank Michigan rank
Stat Northwestern rank Michigan rank
Off. Efficiency 97 50
Def. Efficiency 73 18
Overall KenPom 76 24
Tempo 323 344
Four Factors NU Mich
Effective FG% 49.9 54.3
Turnover% 17.9 14.4
Offensive Reb% 29.2 27
FTA/FGA 30.6 26.4

As you can see in the tempo numbers, this will once again be a game without a ton of possessions. When you’re playing a slow game against a good team, you can’t turn the ball over 16 times and expect to win. Michigan takes care of the ball better than almost anyone (4th in the country in TO%), so they won’t be throwing possessions away. I don’t think we’ll see a 58-47 score again, but I’d be shocked if either team got to 70 points in regulation.

Another key to this game will be the free throw line. Northwestern is tops in the Big Ten in free throw percentage and Michigan is dead last, but the Wildcats haven’t been getting to the line enough to make that difference count.

C’mon, Cats. Let’s win out and make the Tournament. CRAZIER THINGS HAVE HAPPENED.

I have an intramural basketball game at 6 so I’ll miss at least the first half, but there will be a gamethread and tweets and a rapid recap like always.

Broadcast Information

Game Time, location: 6 p.m. central, Allstate Arena

TV: BTN

Online: BTN2Go

Mobile: BTN App

Radio: 560 WIND

KenPom prediction: 62-63 (45% chance to win)

Betting Line: Michigan -1.5