Minnesota vs. Michigan State: Full Game Preview
|Minnesota||A Hollins 14.2||T Mbakwe 8.5||A Hollins 3.7|
|Michigan State||K Appling 14.0||A Payne 6.9||K Appling 4.2|
No. 12 Michigan State hosts No. 18 Minnesota at Breslin Center on Wednesday. Tip-off is at 7:00 EST and you can see it on Big Ten Network. The Spartans lost to the Golden Gophers 76-63 on December 31st and are 9-2 against them over the last four years.
Michigan State is 2nd in the conference and Minnesota is 6th. Both teams continue to jockey for position.
In an 80-75 win over Illinois on January 31st, Keith Appling put up 24 points and 8 rebounds for the Spartans. He leads the team with 14.0 points per game and 4.2 assists per game. In a 62-59 victory over Iowa on February 3rd, Andre Hollins put up 15 points and 6 rebounds for the Golden Gophers. With 14.2 points per game and 3.7 assists per game, he has team-best marks in both categories. Minnesota will hope to exploit their strengths, which include: offensive rebounding percentage at 46.9 and free throw rate at 43.4.
- Michigan State has a much better Kiplinger In-State Ranking than Minnesota (#39 vs #52).
- We're a talent magnet. Since 1998 Michigan State has recruited more Top 10 high school players than Minnesota (6 vs 3).
- At least you keep showing up. Michigan State has an average margin of victory of 11 over Minnesota in 35 wins since 1980.
- We win when it counts, too. Michigan State has more NCAA Tournament wins over the last 10 years than Minnesota (21 vs 0).
- Michigan State takes less vacation, with more NCAA Tournament appearances over the last 10 years than Minnesota (10 vs 3).
- AP voters think more highly of Michigan State and have put us in the AP Top 25 more often over the past 10 years than Minnesota (146 vs 40).
- Branden Dawson is ranked 6th in the Big Ten in rebounds and 4th in the Big Ten in steals.
- East Lansing isn't as congested as Minneapolis (population is significantly lower).
- The Michigan State assist leader (Keith Appling) has more assists than the Minnesota assist leader (Andre Hollins).
- People just expect us to beat you. Michigan State has been the favorite 25 out of the last 31 times.