Michigan State hosts Wisconsin on Thursday, trying to maintain control over its destiny in the Big Ten title race.
The Spartans, 20-5 and 9-3, last played on Saturday, downing then-No. 3 Ohio State in Columbus. It was a defensive clinic from MSU, which held the Buckeyes to just 48 points; forced All-American Jared Sullinger into 10 turnovers; allowed OSU to hit just 14 of 53 field goals.
It the Spartans could do that to OSU on the road, they might just hold Wisconsin to 30 in East Lansing. OSU went into that game averaging 76 points and shooting better than 48 percent from the floor. Wisconsin, meanwhile, is getting just 64 points and hits less than 43 percent of its shots.
Draymond Green leads the Spartans with 15 points and a Big Ten-best 10.5 board per game. Keith Appling has scored in double-figures in three straight for MSU, while Adreian Payne is coming off a season-high 15 against the Buckeyes.
Wisconsin, which comes in at 19-6 and 8-4 in the conference, is ranked No. 17 in this week’s polls. The Badgers are led by senior guard Jordan Taylor, who averages 14.5 points per game and has hit exactly one-third of his three-pointers on the season.
The game tips at 7 EST and will be on ESPN and ESPN3.