Preview: Michigan State basketball to face Purdue at home Jan. 8
Who: Michigan State (13-2, 4-0 in Big Ten) and Purdue (9-5, 2-1 in Big Ten).
When: Tuesday, Jan. 8 at 9 p.m.
Where: Breslin Center.
Radio: 94.9 WMMQ-FM (Lansing).
Purdue players to watch: junior guard Carsen Edwards (6 foot 1 inch, 200 lbs.), senior guard Ryan Cline (6 foot 6 inches, 195 lbs.).
The No. 6 Michigan State men’s basketball team (13-2, 4-0 in Big Ten) returns home to face Purdue (9-5, 2-1 in Big Ten) after a win against then-No. 16 Ohio State on Saturday afternoon, 86-77.
This marks the first matchup between the Spartans and Boilermakers in East Lansing since last season’s thriller, where No. 4 MSU won 68-65 over the third-ranked Boilermakers on Miles Bridges’ three-pointer with 2.7 seconds remaining.
After losing four-fifths of last year’s starting lineup, the Boilermakers are indisputably led by pre-season Big Ten player of the year junior point guard Carsen Edwards, averaging 25.5 points per game.
While the rest of the Boilermakers do not have starting experience before this season, they are an older bunch. They typically start four upperclassmen, including senior sharpshooter Ryan Cline, second on the team in scoring at 12.6 per game.
This is not last year’s Purdue team, but it is a proud one. The Boilermakers are coming off an 86-70 victory over then-No. 25 Iowa last Thursday night, their second straight victory over a ranked team (the Boilermakers defeated then-No. 23 Maryland 62-60 on Dec. 6). However, Purdue has yet to win on the road, losing at No. 2 Michigan, No. 13 Florida State, and Texas.
MSU has it rolling, winners of eight straight games and thus far undefeated in conference, and in all home games. The Spartans are led by junior point guard Cassius Winston, averaging 17.7 points per game and coming off a 25-point performance against Ohio State on Saturday. The Spartans are likely to remain without the services of junior shooting guard Joshua Langford, whose left foot remains in a walking boot after suffering a left ankle injury against Northern Illinois on Dec. 29.
Purdue leads the all-time series 68-54, but Michigan State leads the series in East Lansing, 32-26.