The Michigan State Spartans picked up a massive win to enhance their NCAA Tournament chances with a 70-64 win over their rival the No. 2 Michigan Wolverines on Sunday afternoon at the Breslin Center in Lansing, Michigan.
Rocket Watts shined for the Spartans, with 21 points on 8-16 from the field. Michigan State (15-11, 9-11 B1G) was only 24-54 from the field as a team, but still managed 1.13 points per possession thanks to 18-23 from the free throw line.
The Wolverines (19-3, 14-3 B1G) entered with both a top-10 offense and defense in the country, but got outrebounded 38-32 by Sparty, who was playing for their postseason hopes. Michigan had already locked up the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament this week, but a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament might now be in jeopardy.
As for Michigan State’s bubble status, they move to 5-9 against Quad 1 teams on the season. But with an NET of 72 and a KenPom of 61, they are by no means a lock for The Big Dance even with the victory.
But Joe Lunardi of ESPN.com moves them to one of the last four byes to get in the tournament without a First Four appearance.