Lucas is the key
The possible return of MSU point guard Kalin Lucas could make a big difference tonight when they host Purdue. Here’s the Super Tuesday preview from BroburySports.com.
Michigan State is a 2 ½-point home favorite at BroburySports. The game is on ESPN at 9 pm ET, right after No. 12 Tennessee (+3 ½) at No. 22 Vanderbilt.
Michigan State (19-5 SU, 8-15 ATS) has dropped from No. 5 in the country down to No. 10. The Spartans lost two games last week, the first 67-49 at Wisconsin as two-point ‘dogs.
Lucas hurt his ankle in that game and missed the Illinois contest Saturday night. MSU started Chris Allen and Durrell Summers in the backcourt, and they combined for 26 points. However, Lucas’ point guard skills and clutch play were missed in a tough 78-73 loss.
The Spartans were 1 ½-point ‘chalk’ against Illinois and are now 0-4 ATS in their last four games.
Lucas is questionable against Purdue and it’s a huge game. The Spartans (9-2 SU in the Big Ten) have a one-game lead over three teams. Purdue is in fifth place with a 7-3 SU mark.
This is the first meeting between the teams this year. Last season, they each won and ‘covered’ on their own home court.
Purdue has righted the ship
No. 6 Purdue (19-3 SU, 9-12-1 ATS) has won five games in a row (2-3 ATS) since suffering a surprising three-game losing streak.
The latest was a 78-75 win at Indiana as 12 ½-point favorites. The Boilermakers got 56 points from the trio of Robbie Hummel (16.5 PPG), JaJuan Johnson (14.4 PPG) and E’Twaun Moore (17.2 PPG). The rest of the squad had just 22 points.
Finding a fourth scorer has been a problem all year. It was thought that freshman Kelsey Barlow could be that man, but he’s averaging just 4 PPG in the last four games. Guard Chris Kramer is a gritty senior who does all the little things, but he’s the 4th leading scorer at just 6 PPG.
Purdue is well rested having been idle since Thursday. However, MSU has superior depth if Lucas can go, with seven guys capable of stepping up.
Can MSU hang on to first place in the Big Ten?
Bet on it at BroburySports.com!
Posted: 2/9/10 10:05AM ET