Preview: No.19 Michigan State vs No.8 UW

After only playing once in regular season, the Spartans and the Badgers will face off against each other for the fifth time in the Big Ten Tournament.

No.19 Michigan State (25-7) vs. No.8 Wisconsin (27-4)

Date/Time - Saturday, March 15 at 12:40 p.m. Central

Arena – Conseco Fieldhouse (18,345)

Television - CBS (Jim Nantz, Billy Packer)

Radio - Wisconsin Radio Network (Matt Lepay, Mike Lucas)

Series – Michigan State leads 66-57

Last Meeting – Wisconsin won 57-42 on Feb. 28, 2008 in Madison

Wisconsin Probable Starters

1 Marcus Landry (Junior Forward, 11.1 ppg - scored at least eight points in all but two league games)

3 Trevon Hughes (Sophomore Guard, 11.6 ppg - had six steals in three different games and was third in the Big Ten in steals)

22 Michael Flowers (Senior Guard, 9.5 ppg - named to the Big Ten All-Defensive team for the second straight year)

32 Brian Butch (Senior Forward, 12.3 ppg - held to a season-low one point against Michigan)

45 Joe Krabbenhoft (Junior Forward, 7.4 ppg - led team with 12 points against Michigan)

Off the Bench

12 Jason Bohannon (Sophomore Guard, 8.1 ppg - streak of consecutive free throws snapped at 39)

24 Tim Jarmusz (Freshman Forward, 0.6 ppg - played 44 minutes in last six games after logging just 23 minutes in team's first 25 contests)

34 Greg Stiemsma (Senior Center, 3.1 ppg - needs two more blocks to move into a tie for sixth on UW's all-time list)

Michigan State Probable Starters

2 Raymar Morgan (Sophomore Forward, 14.8 ppg)

11 Drew Neitzel (Senior Guard, 13.8 ppg)

1 Kalin Lucas (Freshman Guard, 9.8 ppg)

14 Goran Suton (Junior Forward, 8.7 ppg)

34 Drew Naymick (Senior Center, 4.3 ppg)

Off the Bench

3 Chris Allen (Freshman Guard, 5.9 ppg)

15 Durrell Summers (Freshman Guard, 5.2 ppg)

5 Travis Walton (Junior Guard, 3.7 ppg)

Last Time Out

Led by junior Joe Krabbenhoft's 12 points, No.8 Wisconsin held Michigan to only four second-half field goals and 20 percent shooting for the game; leading from beginning to end against ninth-seeded Michigan, 51-34.

Although the Badgers (27-4) shot 34 percent (their lowest total since losing to Purdue February 9), the Badger advanced to Saturday's quarterfinal with a balanced team effort with five players scoring seven points or more.

The team effort has been the M.O. for Wisconsin since the beginning of October, which made senior Brian Butch's 0-for-7 shooting performance not a huge issue.

Michael Flowers continued to impress defensively, this time on freshman guard Manny Harris. During the last meeting between the two teams (January 22 in Madison), Harris went off, making 11 of 19 shots on his way to a game-high 26 points. With Flowers getting another crack at him, Flowers did not disappoint, as Harris made only one of his 12 shots (a three-pointer in the first half) and turned the ball over three times under Flowers' watchful eye.

Last Meeting

Brian Butch knocked down a career-high four 3-pointers, but none were bigger that the ones he nailed in the midst of a 13-4 run in the second half to put the Badgers well in control

Then as Wisconsin was thick in the middle of a 13-4 run just under the 10-minute mark in the second half, it was Butch who put it away for No.10 Wisconsin, beating No.19 Michigan State 57-42.

Flowers was the unsung defensive hero, as he limited Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year Drew Neitzel to a season-low three points and only a single shot, finishing the night 1-of-10.

Series Notes:

This will be the 124th meeting between Wisconsin and Michigan State with the series dating back to 1922 and fifth in the Big Ten Tournament

Michigan State beat Wisconsin 56-4 in the semifinals in 1999 and again in the semifinals in 2000, 55-46, as the Spartans were on their way to a national title. In the last two post season meetings under Ryan, however, Wisconsin has been on the winning end, beating MSU 68-66 in the semifinals (UW won the tournament that season) and 70-57 in the quarterfinals last season.

Wisconsin won the only regular season meeting between the two teams this season, a 57-42 triumph on Feb. 28, 2008 in Madison.

UW is 10-3 against the Spartans under Bo Ryan

Wisconsin Notes:

Wisconsin is now 12-9 at the Big Ten Tournament and 4-2 when playing at Conseco Fieldhouse. Prior to Friday's win, Wisconsin's three wins at Conseco came in 2004 when Wisconsin won the Big Ten Tournament.

Wisconsin is the first No. 1 seed to defeat a No. 9 seed in Big Ten Tournament history. It is also Wisconsin's first win as a No. 1 seed as the team was 0-2 before Friday as the top seed.

The Badgers are on an eight-game winning streak.

Wisconsin held its opponent under 20 points in the first half four times this season, including Michigan's 18 points in the first half Friday. It was the second time this season the Badgers held the Wolverines to just 18 points in the first half.

Michigan State Notes:

Drew Neitzel has 28 points in MSU's quarterfinal game against Ohio State, the most by a Spartan in a Big Ten Tournament game, breaking the old mark of 22.

Michigan State had 14 fast-break points compared to just four when the two teams met to end the regular season.

Michigan State, the Big Ten's field-goal percentage leader, was held below 40 percent from the field for just the sixth time this season.


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