In the title game of the Orlando Classic, the Spartans hit just 8 of 33 shots from the field – and 1 of 9 from 3-point range – after taking a 36-35 lead into the half.
The struggles were highlighted by a bevy of missed layups, including Branden Dawson’s miss at the rim with less than a minute left and trailing by three.
Dawson finished with eight points on just 4 of 15 shooting, while fellow senior Travis Trice had 14 points on 3 of 14 shooting.
The game was in Michigan State’s favor early, as the Spartans used a hot start from Denzel Valentine to take a lead as big as seven in the first half.
But as MSU went hit just one of its first 12 field-goal attempts in the second half, Kansas opened up a seven-point lead.
Michigan State chipped away at the lead, pulling within three when Travis Trice hit a 3-pointer with 1:37 to go. That would be the final basket for the Spartans, though, as Dawson missed a jumper with 52 seconds to go and then a layup on the ensuing possession.
Valentine finished with 14 points and hit 3 of 5 from 3-point range.