Following a road blowout loss to at the time #9 Michigan on Thursday, 82-53, Nebraska will be on the road again, this time at East Lansing as they will battle the Spartans of Michigan State who are rated in the top-10 in the nation as well. The Spartans host Nebraska in this contest rated 9th in the nation and most recently losing to Indiana 63-62. The Spartans at 23-6 and 14-4 in the conference would enjoy grabbing a win to try and get closer to securing a two or three seed in the NCAA Tournament in the coming weeks.
The Spartans are trying to sweep the season series against the Huskers as they beat Nebraska at Pinnacle Bank Arena on January 17th, 70-64. For the Spartans this season, they have used a combination of strong offense and defense averaging 80 points per game while allowing just 66. This makes them incredibly tough to get an edge on. But, they have been without junior standout Nick Ward as he has been dealing with a broken bone in his hand. Ward is averaging 15 points per game and seven rebounds, so he will be missed in this contest.
The Spartans will look upon junior Cassius Winston to shoulder even more of the load for Michigan State. Winston is averaging 19 points, eight rebounds, and three rebounds. He has been magnificent all season and the Spartans will need him to play big once again tonight.
For Nebraska, the losses continue to pile so at this point in the season, and they look to be playing the spoiler role. Nebraska is at 15-14 and 5-13 in the conference and the main goal at this point for NU is to stay above .500. In the loss to Michigan, just about everyone struggled including a 3-15 night from senior James Palmer Jr. in which he scored seven points. A bright spot though was from sophomore Nana Akenten. He scored 11 points in 10 minutes on 5-7 shooting. Seeing the young talent step up is encouraging. In this matchup against the Spartans, Nebraska will need solid play from their big three of junior Isaiah Roby, Glynn Watson Jr., and Palmer Jr. Those three are due for a big game and time is of the esscence.
Nebraska and Michigan State will tip-off tonight at 6:00 P.M. and the game can be heard on KRVN.