Jan. 19, 2013; East Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Tom Izzo talks to center Derrick Nix (25) during the 2nd half at Jack Breslin Students Events Center. MSU won 59-56. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Previewing MSU Spartans vs. Illinois: What Fans Need to Know

Tonight at 7:00 PM, the Michigan State Spartans will face off against the Illinois Illini at home at the Breslin Center. Michigan State’s current record is 17-4 overall and 6-2 within the Big Ten Conference. The Illini are at 15-6 and 2-5 overall and within the Big Ten Conference, respectively.

The leading scorer for the Spartans in the season thus far is Kieth Appling, with 13.5 points per game on average. The leading scorer for the Illini is Brandon Paul with 17.9 points per game.

The possible starting lineup for the Spartans is:

  • # 11 Keith Appling
  • # 25 Derrick Nix
  • # 5 Adreian Payne
  • #22 Branden Dawson
  • #14 Gary Harris

While there may be substitutions on this lineup, it looks pretty strong to me. Of course, the finalization of the lineup will rest upon Tom Izzo’s shoulders with what he wants to do.

The Spartans have won six of the last nine games against the Illini, even though historically in match-ups, the University of Illinois team leads with a record of 56-55.

This will be the latest in a string of games for the Michigan State Spartans that will be particularly tough. While the Spartans kill on defense, they will still need to bring their A-game when it comes to offense. Michigan State does have an advantage in that they have the home court advantage, and I’m sure the Izzone will be filled with screaming fans.


Tags: Basketball Michigan State Spartans

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