7 p.m. vs. Michigan St. • BTN, 100.3-FM
Spartans' slow start is far from norm for Izzo
Preview: The Gophers (8-1, 1-1) are looking to keep their momentum going after upsetting No. 4 Iowa on Friday in a 102-95 overtime victory at the Barn. But they'll be trying to get their first win against Michigan State in the regular season since 2015. The Spartans (6-2, 0-2) might look vulnerable after dropping their first two games to open Big Ten play for the first time since 2006-07. But Tom Izzo has dominated Minnesota, winning 24 of the past 27 regular-season games vs. the Gophers since 2004-05, including seven straight such victories. Still, Michigan State didn't seem itself in getting blown out by 14 points at Northwestern to open the conference season. The Spartans then returned home and fell 85-76 against Wisconsin, the first loss to the Badgers at the Breslin Center since 2004. Izzo hasn't found a floor leader to come close to replacing former All-America point guard Cassius Winston. Winston's old backcourt mate, Josh Langford, returned after suffering several injury setbacks, but he's averaging just 8.1 points as a senior this season. Junior guard Aaron Henry (12 points per game) hasn't lived up to his potential.
Players to watch: Gophers junior guard Marcus Carr ranks second in the Big Ten in scoring (24.6 ppg) and leads the conference with 6.2 assists per game. The Toronto native had his third 30-point game of the season with 30 points and eight assists in the win vs. Iowa. Carr's three-pointer that sent the game to overtime was reminiscent of his last-second jumper that won the game 67-64 vs. Loyola Marymount earlier in the season. Marquette transfer and big man Joey Hauser leads Michigan State with 14 points and 8.6 rebounds this year. Hauser had just four points in a loss at Northwestern, but he bounced back with 27 points on 10-for-11 free throw shooting against the Badgers.
Numbers: The Gophers set two school records with their outside shooting against Iowa. Senior Brandon Johnson's 8-for-9 shooting set the mark for three-point percentage in a game. The team's 17-for-43 shooting overall included the most three-point attempts in a game.