Michigan State still hasn’t found its shooting touch and it cost the 17th-ranked Spartans last night at 23rd-ranked Illinois, where M-S-U lost 71-to-62. Michigan State connected on 37.5 percent of its shots from the floor and made only 7-of-26 from beyond the arc. Sophomore guard Brandon Paul came off the bench and provided a game-deciding lift for Illinois.
Paul finished with 20 points for the Illini. The Spartans rallied to make it 59-to-57 Illinois but eventually, M-S-U was held scoreless over the final four plus minutes of the game and Illinois made its free throws down the stretch for the 9-point victory. Kalin Lucas led Michigan State with 15 as the Spartans slip to 4-and-2 in the Big Ten and 12-and-6 overall. M-S-U’s next game is Saturday night at Purdue.
Michigan’s losing streak is now five games as Northwestern cruised past the visiting Wolverines 74-to-60. Michigan managed to shoot just under 40-percent from the field with their Big Ten record dipping to 1-and-5 with the overall mark at 11-and-8. The Wolverines were led by Stu Douglass, who had 17 points and Darius Morris, who had 16. The Wildcats led by as many as 22 points in the second half and coasted to victory. Michigan returns to the court Saturday night at home against Minnesota.
Tonight’s schedule includes a MAC game for Western Michigan with the Broncos at Toledo.