Northwestern Basketball Odds

Northwestern Basketball Odds

Northwestern basketball odds

It’s possible to bet on Northwestern basketball in Illinois. In-state college betting is legal in Illinois thanks to the passage of House Bill 3136.

The Northwestern Wildcats enter the 2021 campaign looking to improve upon their 2020 season, where the team finished just 9-15 overall and 6-13 in conference play. The Wildcats are led by Chris Collins, who is now in his eighth season as the head coach for Northwestern. The Wildcats are a Power 5 team, as the program is part of the Big Ten Conference

How to Bet on Northwestern in Illinois

You can only bet on in-state college teams in Illinois while at one of the Illinois sportsbook locations. You can bet on out-of-state college teams online. To get started, follow these steps:

  1. First, download an Illinois sports betting app and create an account. The app will ask for your name, email and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
  2. Secondly, make a deposit by using any available method on the legal sportsbook app to ensure you don’t miss out on any bonus bets and bonuses. In Illinois, you can deposit using a debit or credit card, ACH, e-check or PayPal. You can also deposit in person at an Illinois casino location.
  3. Lastly, visit the retail sportsbook to place a bet on the Illinois college team, e.g., the Northwestern Wildcats.

Closest retail sportsbooks to Evanston

Here are a few of the closest sportsbooks near Evanston, IL, where the campus of Northwestern is located. PointsBet Sportsbook at Hawthorne Race Course is only a short drive from Evanston, while BetRivers Sportsbook at Rivers Casino in Des Plaines is around 30 minutes. 

Online sportsbook Casino/OTB Address Distance from Evanston
PointsBet Player’s Pub & Grill 1250 S. River Road, Prospect Heights 28 miles
BetRivers Rivers Casino 3000 S. River Road, Des Plaines 32 miles
Caesars by William Hill Grand Victoria Casino 250 S. Grove Ave., Elgin 40 miles
PointsBet Club Hawthorne Crestwood 13148 Rivercrest Drive, Crestwood 43 miles
Barstool Hollywood Aurora 1 W. New York St., Aurora 48 miles
PointsBet Hawthorne Race Course 3501 S. Laramie Ave., Stickney 49 miles
FanDuel FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing 9301 Collinsville Road, Collinsville 300 miles
DraftKings DraftKings at Casino Queen 200 S. Front St., East St. Louis 307 miles

Northwestern Betting Lines Explained

There are a few ways you can bet Northwestern Wildcats basketball. The most common ways are betting the spread, betting the moneyline, as well as betting if the score will go over or under the total points. 

Northwestern spread bets

If betting the spread and Northwestern was favored by 5.5 against Maryland, the Wildcats would have to win by six in order for that bet to cash. However, if Northwestern would win by nine, this would be considered a “push” and the bettor would receive the full wager back. A spread bet looks like this:

Team Spread
Maryland Terrapins -5.5 (-110)
Northwestern +5.5 (-110)

Northwestern moneyline bet

Betting the moneyline is just a fancy way of picking the winner outright. While money can always be made on picking the favorite, the value lies in the underdog. Typically the underdog is “plus” money. A moneyline wager looks like this:

Team Moneyline odds to win
Maryland Terrapins -220
Northwestern +180

Northwestern over/under odds

The other main wager is having the option of picking over or under the total points scored in the game between the two teams. If a bettor was placing a bet on the total going over 135.5 points scored, the two teams would have to score at least 136 total points for the bettor to cash that ticket. Here’s an example:

Team Total
Maryland Terrapins O 135.5 (-110)
Northwestern U 135.5 (-110)

Some sportsbooks also offer bets on total points scored for the team. For instance, if a sportsbook had Northwestern’s total points set at 62.5, a bettor could place a bet on Northwestern to hit the over or under of that total.

Northwestern has not been a part of any significant March Madness upsets, because it only has one NCAA Tournament win in school history.

Northwestern futures bets

A futures bet is a wager on a team that usually takes weeks or months to see if the wager will hit or not, similar to a longer-term investment into the stock market.  If a bettor places a future bet at $100 at +1800, the bettor could see the odds and the value of that bet increase or decrease for the team, depending on the success of the team. While the sports bettor who made the $100 bet at +1800 is locked in for those odds, other bettors could get better or worse odds as the season rolls on. 

For example, a wager is made on Northwestern to win the Big Ten Tournament at +1800 for $100. If Northwestern were to win the tournament, the ticket would cash and the bettor would win $1,800.      

Why We Can Bet on IL College Teams Finally

While online sports betting in Illinois has been in full swing, you haven’t been able to bet on in-state college teams since sports betting was made legal. However, that is changing. With the passage of HB 3136, sports bettors can wager on Illinois colleges and universities, as well as other programs that are playing Illinois schools on that day. With that said, there is an in-person stipulation, meaning no mobile wagering will be allowed. 

Northwestern Home Games

The Wildcats basketball program plays the majority of their home games at the newly renovated Welsh Ryan Arena. Northwestern can also be seen at Allstate Arena in Rosemont.

  • Owner: Northwestern University
  • Capacity: 8,117
  • Opening Date: Dec. 6, 1952
  • Construction Cost: $1.25 million with $12.2 million in renovations in 2020
  • Surface: Hardwood
  • Other Events: Northwestern men’s and women’s basketball, women’s volleyball and men’s wrestling

You can buy tickets to Welsh Ryan Arena events on Northwestern University’s website.

Northwestern COVID-19 policies include face coverings for those older than 2 years, and attendees must be fully vaccinated or have a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of the event’s start. Antigen tests are available during the workweek at Jacobs Center in Evanston or 245 E. Superior St., Chicago.

How to Listen to Northwestern Wildcat Games

Wildcat fans can listen to the games on via Studio N Productions. Fans can also hear games on WGN Radio 720.

How to Watch Northwestern Games

Northwestern basketball is on multiple networks, but mainly on the Big Ten Network, as all conference games are on the conference network. Fans can watch nonconference contests on the ESPN network, including ESPN+. Other networks include Fox Sports and CBS Sports Network.

Where to Watch the Wildcats Near Evanston

Mullen’s Sports Bar and Grill

  • Address: 7301 Western Ave.
  • Hours: 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Fridays through Sundays, 11 p.m.- 3 a.m. Saturdays

Mullen’s has a friendly atmosphere with various food throughout the day, including brunch, dinner and late-night food options. The sports bar has billiards, darts and other games to enjoy.

Ten Mile House

  • Address: 1700 Central St.
  • Hours: 4-8:30 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Fridays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sundays

Ten Mile is a good place to go if you are in town for a night and want to watch the game while trying the local beer. Ten Mile House is known for having a surplus of local beers on tap.


  • Address: 1932 Central St.
  • Hours: 4-9 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, closed Sundays and Mondays.

If you’re in the mood for classic American food or drinks with friends, Bluestone has the menu and atmosphere for both.

How Did Northwestern Do Last Year?

Northwestern struggled a year ago, finishing the season with a record of 9-15 overall. However, it looked as if the Wildcats would have a successful year, as the program got off to an impressive 4-1 start out of the gate. Northwestern had two top 25 wins in their first five games to start the season, with wins over fourth-ranked Michigan State and No. 23 Ohio State. The loss during that stretch came to Pittsburgh by just one point, falling 71-70. After a rough stretch during the middle of the season, Northwestern ended the regular season on a three-game win streak. The Wildcats would then fall in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament to Minnesota.

The Last Time the Wildcats …

  • Punched a ticket to the NCAA Tournament was in 2017. This has been the only time Northwestern has made it to the NCAA Tournament.
  • Made the NIT was in 2012. The Wildcats have participated in the NIT seven times.
  • Won the Big Ten Conference Regular Season Championship was in 1933.

Historic Facts

  • Northwestern has just one win in the NCAA Tournament, coming against Vanderbilt 68-66.
  • The Wildcats have an all-time record of 1,092-1,521-1
  • The last coach to have a winning record at Northwestern dates back from 1927-1950. Arthur Lonborg collected 236 wins while finishing with a head coaching record of 236-203-1.
  • The career leader in points for the program is John Shurna. Shurna totaled 2,038 points from 2009-12.
  • The most points scored in a single game by Northwestern dates back to Dec. 19, 1966. The Wildcats scored 121 points against Tulane.
  • Most victories in a season for Northwestern is 24, which happened during the 2017 campaign.
  • Most consecutive road wins came during the 1931 season, totaling seven in a row.

Notable Sports Media Personalities

Northwestern has one of the most prominent journalism schools in America, Medill. Many big-name sports personalities went to Northwestern. Here are a few Wildcats of note:

  • Mike Greenberg
  • Michael Wilbon
  • Rachel Nichols
  • J.A. Adande
  • Stewart Mandel
  • Christine Brennan
  • Rich Eisen
  • Jon Heyman
  • Darren Rovell