While a few major conference champions will be decided tonight, Michigan State will battle Wisconsin this afternoon in the semifinal of the Big Ten Tournament. Both teams are firmly in the field for the big dance, but a huge win can help boost their stock.
The Spartans are coming off a victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes in the quarterfinals. Cassius Winston and Matt McQuaid led the charge by combining for 30 points in the win.
Wisconsin held off Nebraska in its matchup, edging the Cornhuskers out by just four points. Despite receiving an uncharacteristic performance from Ethan Happ, the Badgers found ways to produce on the offensive end.
Happ could be in for another rough performance because Nick Ward is back in the lineup for the Spartans. His physicality in the paint makes it very difficult for opponents to get shots off near the rim.
These two programs only met once during this past season, and Michigan State took care of business on the road. Clearly, ESPN’s matchup predictor believes Tom Izzo will lead his crew to another victory over Wisconsin.
According to the FPI, the Spartans have a 70.0 percent chance of winning this matchup.
Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. ET from the United Center.
Winner of this game will face either Michigan or Minnesota in the conference championship.