The #19 Michigan State Spartans (7-2, 0-0 Big Ten) battle the Minnesota Golden Gophers (7-0, 0-0 Big Ten) to kick off the Big Ten Conference action on Wednesday night. Michigan State is coming off an 81-68 victory over Toledo on Saturday, while the Golden Gophers stayed perfect on the year with an 81-76 triumph over Mississippi State.
The tipoff for Wednesday’s conference contest is at 9 p.m. EST inside Williams Arena in Minneapolis, MN. Michigan State is a 6.5-point road favorite, and the over-under total is at 134.0 points.
What to Know – Michigan State Spartans
The Spartans won their second straight game when they took down the Rockets over the weekend. Saturday’s victory moved the Spartans to 7-2, with their only losses coming to a pair of top-10 foes (Kansas, Baylor).
Michigan State averages 73.2 points per game while shooting 44.6% from the field and 36.7% beyond the arc. The Spartans’ defense holds opposing teams to 63.6 points per game, 37.7% shooting from the floor, and 26.8% from three.
The Spartans perimeter defense continues to shine on Saturday in their victory over Toledo, holding the Rockets to 4-of-24 shooting from beyond the arc. Freshman Max Christie paced the Spartans in scoring with 14 points, and Gabe Brown chipped in 12.
Michigan State is 5-4 against the spread this year with a 1-0 mark on the road. The Spartans are 5-1 ATS in their last six games against the Golden Gophers.
What to Know – Minnesota Golden Gophers
Minnesota aims to stay undefeated in the conference opener after Sunday’s win over the Bulldogs. The Golden Gophers didn’t have a tough non-conference schedule but did pick up a victory over the Pitt Panthers last week.
Offensively, the Golden Gophers score 71.3 points per game behind 45.7% shooting from the floor and 36.2% from beyond the arc. Minnesota surrenders 61.0 points per game to opponents and allows 39.3% shooting from the field and 23.1% from the arc.
Minnesota turned the ball over just four times and fired 41% from three in the win over Mississippi State. Payton Willis led the team with 24 points, and Jamison Battle added 20 points for the visitors. The Gophers were beat were outrebounded by 15 and nearly let a 14-point lead slip away in the second half.
The Gophers are 5-2 ATS this year with a 2-1 record on their home court. The total has gone under in eight of the last nine games against the Spartans.
The Pick is In
Both teams are off to solid starts this season and look to get out on the right foot in conference play. The Spartans have won seven of their first nine contests while Minnesota rolled through their non-conference slate unblemished.
Michigan State’s frontcourt is the difference in Wednesday’s tilt as the Spartans crash the glass-like Mississippi State. Tom Izzo and his battle-tested bunch pick up a key road conference victory in a challenging environment on Wednesday night.
Betting Pick: Michigan State Spartans -6