Nebraska vs Michigan State

Time: 08:00 P.M. EST
  •  

Michigan State hasn't been shy about discussing its lofty goals as the end of the season nears.

It's a major reason the Big Ten leader won't be looking past a date with struggling Nebraska.

The sixth-ranked Spartans seek their seventh straight victory when they host the Cornhuskers on Saturday night.

Michigan State (23-5, 12-3) enters the weekend alone atop the conference and is coming off a hard-fought 66-61 win at Minnesota on Wednesday. The Spartans will be playing their fourth game in 10 days Saturday after battling back from a late deficit against the Gophers.

Coach Tom Izzo said his squad should expect more tough contests down the stretch.

"When you're trying to be in a championship run, you've got to steal a game somewhere," Izzo said. "I feel very fortunate to win it, and I'm proud that we found a way to win a game that we didn't deserve to."

Draymond Green finished with 17 points, five rebounds, five assists and a season high-tying four steals for the Spartans, who are one game ahead of No. 8 Ohio State and 11th-ranked Michigan in the Big Ten.

"Especially how the race is now, we really needed this win," Green said.

Nebraska has struggled in its first season in the Big Ten and sits in a last-place tie with Penn State, though it gave Michigan State a tough test in the first meeting Dec. 31.

The Cornhuskers (12-14, 4-11) led by one at halftime before the Spartans took over and won 68-55 behind Green's game-high 19 points.

Bo Spencer led Nebraska with 15 points off the bench in that contest, marking the only game he hasn't started this season.

Coach Doc Sadler, who seeks his 150th career Division I victory, tweaked his lineup at the time by starting freshman Josiah Moore, though Spencer likely will be on the floor at tip-off this time around.

Spencer finished 9 for 11 from the field and scored 27 points in an 80-57 win over Illinois last Saturday, then shot 8 of 14 and scored 19 in Wednesday's 83-65 loss at Purdue.

Nebraska has lost five of six, with four of the defeats coming by double digits.

The Huskers have shot 53.8 percent over their last two games, though the Spartans have held their last nine opponents to 35.0 percent shooting combined.

Michigan State leads the Big Ten holding teams to 37.4 percent from the field while ranking first in shooting 47.5 percent in conference play. Nebraska's league opponents are shooting 47.1 percent - 11th in the Big Ten.

The Spartans uncharacteristically have been outrebounded in two of their last three games, as Minnesota beat them 33-27 on the boards. They rank third in the nation with a plus-9.5 rebound differential.

The Huskers have lost 32 of their last 33 road games against ranked opponents, winning 65-59 over No. 22 Texas A&M on Feb. 23, 2008.

Michigan State has won four of the five all-time meetings in East Lansing, though Nebraska won the most recent matchup there 85-81 on Dec. 18, 1993.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
College Basketball Current Odds
GameCurrent Line
Nebraska
@ Michigan State
 
-19

SportsLine
Game Forecast
Category
0%Chance of Winning0%
0-0vs Top 250-0
vs NCAA
vs Non-NCAA
vs Common Opponents
More Projections from SportsLine

Big 12
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Kansas15-333-51
W. Virginia13-526-910
Oklahoma12-629-86
Texas11-720-1327
Iowa St.10-823-1223
Baylor10-822-1225
Texas Tech9-919-1336
Kansas St.5-1317-1690
Oklahoma St.3-1512-20172
TCU2-1612-21174
Big Ten
TeamConf. W-LTot. W-LRPI Rank
Indiana15-327-824
Michigan St.13-529-612
Maryland12-627-914
Purdue12-626-915
Iowa12-622-1129
Wisconsin12-622-1343
Ohio St.11-721-1474
Michigan10-823-1357
Northwestern8-1020-12115
Penn St.7-1116-16119
Nebraska6-1216-18165
Illinois5-1315-19149
Minnesota2-168-23257
Rutgers1-177-25294

Related Video

 

CBSSports Shop

Men's Nike White Villanova Wildcats 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt

Villanova Wildcats 2016 National Champs
Get the Locker Room Gear!
Shop Now

 
 
 
Other Games
VT 65 Final
DUKE 70
VANDY 74 Final
Kentucky 83
ND 58 Final
St John's 61
Drake 58 Final
Wich St 81
Oklahoma 60 Final
Baylor 70
NOVA 46 Final
GTOWN 67
Florida 62 Final
Georgia 76
Missouri 86 Final
Kansas 87
AF 58 Final
UNLV 68
NC 54 Final
Virginia 51
Purdue 75 Final
Michigan 61
Temple 72 Final
St Joe's 82
N Mexico 64 Final
TCU 83
MRST 69 Final
TNTC 64
Syracuse 71 Final
UConn 69
Colo St 66 Final
SDSU 74