Michigan State and Indiana play at 7 p.m. ET on Friday, Jan. 19.
Time: 7 p.m. ET
Date: Friday, Jan. 19
Location: Breslin Center, East Lansing, Mich.
How can I watch the Michigan State-Indiana basketball game on TV and online?
Gus Johnson and Jim Jackson will call the game.
How can I listen to the Michigan State-Indiana basketball game on the radio?
Michigan State and Indiana can be heard over the 38-affiliate Spartan Sports Network, including flagship stations WMMQ-FM (94.9)/WJIM-AM (1240) in Lansing and WJR-AM (760) in Detroit.
Will Tieman and Matt Steigenga will have the call.
Michigan State-Indiana basketball preview
Two weeks ago, Michigan State was the No. 1 in the country and Indiana had just lost to Wisconsin, one of the worst teams in the Big Ten. When these two teams face off on Friday, Indiana will be the one on the hot streak.
Michigan State has dropped two of its last three games and barely survived in the lone win, a 76-72 overtime result at home against Rutgers. Meanwhile, the Hoosiers have won three straight and catapulted up the conference standings to get themselves tied with the Spartans.
“As far as Indiana goes, they’ve won three in a row and they’re playing good ball,” Michigna State coach Tom Izzo said. “They’ve got a great, great forward in Juwan Morgan. He’s averaging [15.6 points] and [7.4 rebounds]. And maybe more importantly, they’ve got two or three senior guards, one fifth-year, that are all playing pretty well right now. So it’s probably more about us than it is about them. We’ve got to take care of our own issues.”
And there are issues aplenty for a team still ranked in the top 10 nationally. Michigan State has struggled with its half court offense in the last three games, averaging 14.3 turnovers while only getting sophomore big man Nick Ward 15 total shots.
Pleas from Izzo for a more aggressive offense have led to a lot of dribble driving over ball movement, with one or two players moving while the rest stand still on the perimeter. To combat that, the Spartans want to get their offense going by scoring before the defense is set.
“We’ve got to get back to rebounding and running,” sophomore Miles Bridges said. “If we get back to doing that, that’s when we’re at our best.”
It wouldn’t hurt to get back to hitting 3-pointers either, and this is the team against which to do it. Indiana ranks last in the league in 3-point percentage defense, giving up 8.6 threes per game on 37.9 percent shooting.
These are the games Michigan State has to win to keep itself in the Big Ten regular season race. Already two games back, the Spartans will play a road-heavy schedule in February, so they must take care of business on their home court.
“As you can see, the league is crazy,” Izzo said. “Things around the whole country are that way. I’ll be honest with you. I thought we’d drop to maybe 20th after two losses. And when I looked at it, why we didn’t, it’s because everybody’s got the same issues we got, which is what I said before. Right now, I’m not sure that anybody’s able to handle any success.”