Who's Playing

Illinois State @ Murray State

Current Records: Illinois State 2-5; Murray State 3-3

What to Know

The Illinois State Redbirds haven't won a contest against the Murray State Racers since Dec. 13 of 2015, but they'll be looking to end the drought Thursday. Illinois State and MSU will face off in a Missouri Valley battle at 8 p.m. ET at CFSB Center. Given that these two teams suffered a loss in their last game, they both have a little extra motivation heading into this game.

It looks like the Redbirds got the smaller half of the wishbone at Thanksgiving dinner. They took a hard 57-44 fall against the Rhode Island Rams last Wednesday. The losing side was boosted by forward Kendall Lewis, who had 14 points in addition to seven rebounds. Lewis hadn't helped his team much against the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers last week, so this was a nice turnaround for him.

Meanwhile, the Racers were close but no cigar on Saturday as they fell 69-66 to the Chattanooga Mocs.

Illinois State have to know they'll be fighting an uphill battle given the 12-point spread they are up against. Those sticking with them against the spread have guts, to put it politely, as the team has let down bettors in all their past seven games.

The losses put Illinois State at 2-5 and MSU at 3-3. A pair of stats to keep an eye on: The Redbirds are stumbling into the matchup with the 40th fewest takeaways in college basketball, having accrued only 11.4 on average. The Racers have had an even harder time: they are ninth worst in college basketball in takeaways, with only 10.5 on average. It's possible one of these Achilles' heels will wind up tripping the losing team up.

How To Watch

  • When: Thursday at 8 p.m. ET
  • Where: CFSB Center -- Murray, Kentucky
  • Follow: CBS Sports App
  • Ticket Cost: $39.26


The Racers are a big 12-point favorite against the Redbirds, according to the latest college basketball odds.

The oddsmakers were right in line with the betting community on this one, as the game opened as a 12-point spread, and stayed right there.

Over/Under: -109

See college basketball picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine's advanced computer model. Get picks now.

Series History

Murray State have won four out of their last five games against Illinois State.

  • Nov 16, 2021 - Murray State 77 vs. Illinois State 65
  • Dec 05, 2020 - Murray State 76 vs. Illinois State 65
  • Dec 09, 2017 - Murray State 78 vs. Illinois State 72
  • Nov 11, 2016 - Murray State 73 vs. Illinois State 70
  • Dec 13, 2015 - Illinois State 63 vs. Murray State 61