Dave's College Basketball Picks, Feb. 17: Michigan State at Purdue

dave darbySenior Analyst IFebruary 17, 2009

No. 9 Michigan State (20-4, 10-2) at No. 20 Purdue (19-6, 8-4)

Line: Purdue -2.5

Michigan State maintained their two-game lead in the Big Ten Conference with a victory Tuesday over in-state rival Michigan 54-42.  After three months of basketball, the Spartans are meeting Purdue for the first time this season. The conference lead is not secure by any means, as the Spartans face the third-place Boilermakers twice and visit second-place Illinois in their six remaining regular season games.

Purdue, with Robbie Hummel back in the lineup, defeated Iowa 49-45 on Saturday to hold on to third place in the conference. Hummel, out recently with a recurring back issue, played 24 minutes, but scored just two points and grabbed four rebounds in limited action. Ranking second in the Big Ten in offensive scoring as well as defensive scoring, Purdue has weathered health issues to place themselves in prime position for the postseason.

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