Indiana vs. Michigan State Gameday

Indiana (9-4/0-1) faces a big game and a difficult test against No. 24 Michigan State (13-3/0-1) at 4:30 p.m. at Assembly Hall. The Hoosiers and Spartans are coming off tough road losses earlier in the week and are each trying to avoid starting the Big Ten season 0-2 …

Game Particulars: Indiana (9-4/0-1) vs. Michigan State (13-3/0-1)
Indiana returns to Assembly Hall for a 4:30 p.m. match-up against Tom Izzo's Michigan State Spartans. Indiana has won six of the last seven against MSU in Assembly Hall, although three of the last six have gone to overtime. The Hoosiers prevailed in overtime games in 2001 and 2005, while Michigan State won in 2003. Points figure to be hard to come by, as the Spartans lead the conference in scoring defense (55.4/game), while Indiana is fifth at 59.6 per outing.

IU is coached by Kelvin Sampson, who is in his first year as Indiana's head coach and owns an 9-4 record in Bloomington and a 464-261 career mark in 23-plus seasons. Michigan State, meanwhile, is coached by Tom Izzo, who in his 12th year at the helm of the Spartan program. Izzo owns a 268-112 record in East Lansing, has led Michigan State to four Final Fours (1999, 2000, 2001, 2005) and won the 2000 national title.

The game will be televised by CBS, with Verne Lundquist (play-by-play) and Billy Packer (color commentary) calling the match-up.

Indiana 2006-07 Schedule

Michigan State 2006-07 Schedule

PROBABLE STARTERS
Indiana (9-4/0-1 Big Ten)
PG- Earl Calloway (6-3, 173, Sr.) – 10.1 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 3.7 apg, 51.7% FG shooting
SG-Armon Bassett (6-1, 176, Fr.) – 8.4 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 2.7 apg, 38.1% 3 pt. shooting
WG – Rod Wilmont (6-4, 205, Sr.) – 10.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 1.3 spg, 37.3% 3 pt. shooting
SF – Lance Stemler (6-8, 210, Jr.) – 9.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 43.3% 3 pt. shooting
PF – D.J. White (6-9, 251, Jr.) – 13.1 ppg, 7.6 rpg, 2.5 bpg, 48.9% FG shooting

Michigan State (13-3/0-1 Big Ten)
PG- Travis Walton (6-2, 195, So.) – 6.7 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 5.6 apg, 30.8% 3 pt. shooting
SG –Drew Neitzel (6-0, 180, Jr.) – 18.4 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 4.8 apg, 40.7% 3 pt. shooting
SF- Isaiah Dahlman (6-6, 185, Fr.) – 5.7 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 45.6% FG shooting
PF – Marquise Gray (6-8, 235, So.) – 8.1 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.0 bpg, 19.3 mpg
C – Goran Suton (6-10, 245, So.) – 9.6 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 43.9% FG shooting

Indiana 2006-07 Statistics

Michigan State 2006-07 Statistics

WHAT TO WATCH FOR
How often will Indiana get to the free-throw line? – The Hoosiers were out-shot at the charity stripe 35-11 at Ohio State, something that can be attributed largely to the presence of 7-0, 280-pound Greg Oden in the middle of the Buckeyes' defense. But Michigan State doesn't have that sort of shot blocker, and IU Coach Kelvin Sampson said earlier in the week it's a good bet that he's going to play the players who are capable of putting the ball on the floor, getting into the lane and getting to the rim. If that's a point of emphasis Sunday, expect to once again see plenty of Joey Shaw, Armon Bassett and an aggressive Earl Calloway. Shaw has been the team's best player at attacking off the dribble out of halfcourt sets, shooting 36 free throws this season (3rd on the team) despite playing only 14.4 minutes per game. Calloway, meanwhile, loves to attack in transition and gets to the free-throw line as well. Points aren't be easy to come by when a Tom Izzo team squares off against a Kelvin Sampson squad, and whoever can get some easy points at the free-throw line will have an edge.

What can the Spartans expect from Raymar Morgan? - The Spartans have been hurt by the absence of the 6-7, 220-pound Morgan, who had started the season's first nine games and was averaging 11.7 points and 5.6 rebounds. Morgan has been sidelined for four weeks with a stress fracture to his shin, but has been cleared to return this afternoon. A freshman, Morgan is a gifted athlete who attacks the rim and the boards and can defend guards as well as forwards. The question is how much Michigan State can expect to get out of the Canton, Ohio, product. Izzo figures to be cautious with Morgan, whom he doesn't want to see get injured again and then lose for a significant amount of time. But 10-15 minutes of action is likely, and the Hoosiers will have their hands full finding a player who can match up defensively with him.

What kind of contributions can Xavier Keeling, Ben Allen and Mike White make? Playing time is often a result of match-ups, and it's a good bet the Hoosiers will need to turn to Xavier Keeling, Ben Allen and Mike White more than they have in recent games. While most teams are utilizing three-guard sets these days, the Spartans use a more traditional lineup that includes 6-10 Goran Suton, 6-8 Marquise Gray and often times 6-7 Raymar Morgan as well. Six-foot-10 Drew Naymick (20.5 minutes/game) will also see significant action, giving Izzo at least four players who do the majority of their work in the paint. That means IU's back-ups frontcourt players will play important roles in this contest, particularly on the defensive end and on the glass. Allen can help on the interior against Suton and possibly Gray, while Keeling has the versatility to go against the interior players as well as Morgan at times. Mike White is a player Sampson said he wished he'd played against Ohio State, so expect to see him get some minutes against the Spartans.

Can the Hoosiers jump on the Spartans early? - Michigan State might be ranked No. 24 in the country, but it's likely suffering in the confidence department, particularly away from home. The Spartans dropped a 62-60 game at Iowa Wednesday, losing to a Hawkeye team that has lost games to Northern Iowa and Drake this season and should finish in the bottom third of the league standings. Michigan State's only other true road game was a seven-point loss at Boston College, so this team has yet to taste victory away on someone else's home floor. With a capacity crowd expected at Assembly Hall, the first 10 minutes will be critical. Only Drew Neitzel is well-schooled in playing in front of hostile environments, while just about everyone else on the Spartan roster is just beginning to learn what it's like.

DID YOU KNOW…
Michigan State is one of only two teams in the country that has held everyone one of its foes to 65 points or less (Texas A&M being the other)…Spartan foes are shooting a Big Ten-worst 36.9 percent from the floor and 32 percent from behind the 3-point arc. Maryland shot 54.8 percent in its 62-60 win over Michigan State in the Big Ten-ACC Challenge, the only team to shoot 46 percent or better against Izzo's squad…Drew Neitzel's shot attempts are up from 7.1/game a year ago to 12.9/game this season. He's also at his best in the second half, when he averages 11.7 points/half compared to 6.7 in the opening 20 minutes…D.J. White leads the Big Ten in rebounding at 7.6/game. The last Hoosier to lead the conference in rebounding was George McGinnis in 1971 (14.9/game)…Travis Walton ranks second in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio with a +2.70. Walton is averaging 5.6 assists and 2.0 turnovers, ranking him just behind Ohio State's Mike Conley (+3.41). Indiana doesn't have anyone ranked in the top 10 in the category…Michigan State forces a league-low 12.8 turnovers game, while Indiana's 13.1 turnovers/game ranks third in the conference (Northwestern 11.2, Wisconsin 11.9).

Peegs.com Top Stories