Gophers-Michigan State game preview

  • Updated: February 21, 2012 - 11:29 PM

Gophers at a glance: After losing at Northwestern on Saturday, the Gophers (17-10, 5-9 Big Ten) have dropped four of their past five -- including three in a row -- and their season is on life support. The Gophers have four games left, with three against ranked teams, and they probably would need to win three to be considered for the NCAA tournament. Two things the Gophers need to improve on are turnovers (they have 48 in the past three games) and free-throw shooting (30-for-50 in the past three).

Michigan State at a glance: The No. 6 Spartans (22-5, 11-3) are starting to look as if they're the best team in the league, after beating Ohio State and Wisconsin in back-to-back games earlier this month and overtaking the Buckeyes in both conference standings and the AP poll. Michigan State has won five in a row and has plenty of motivation to finish strong and potentially earn a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. When the Spartans hosted the Gophers earlier this season, they handed Minnesota its most lopsided loss of the Big Ten season to that point, overwhelming the Gophers with physical aggressiveness and good shooting. The Spartans, one of the best defensive teams in the league, are holding teams to 37 percent shooting. They also have not had much trouble on the road, winning at Wisconsin and Ohio State.

AMELIA RAYNO

  • 7:30 P.M. VS. MICH. ST. • WILLIAMS ARENA • BTN, 1500-AM
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