BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The prevailing analysis heading into today’s Michigan State-Indiana game is the Spartans are headed for a loss. Las Vegas set the line near double digits in favor the Hoosiers. That’s about where I see this, too (here’s the tipoff, with my prediction).
But Indiana is beatable and beatable in this building. Wisconsin and Butler have set the formula.
When Butler beat the Hoosiers on Dec. 15 on a neutral floor in Indianapolis, the Bulldogs did so by hitting 11 3-pointers and out-rebounding Indiana (which leads the Big Ten in rebounding margin).
Given MSU hasn’t hit more than eight triples in any single game this season and averages less than five, 11 3s probably isn’t the Spartans’ path to victory — though the rebounding is an important part any success today.
Wisconsin won in Assembly Hall on Jan. 15 by hitting a bevy of difficult shots, but most importantly, the Badgers only turned ball over eight times.
If the Hoosiers can’t get out in transition, they’re limited (like most teams) and capable of a poor shooting night, as they had against Wisconsin.
The formula for MSU is this: Fewer than a dozen turnovers and out-rebound Indiana. If both of these happen, the Spartans will be in this game in the final minutes.
Tipoff is at 1 p.m. on CBS.
More at halftime.