Michigan-Michigan State get their big rematch this weekend. This time, the Spartans get home court, and they are looking for the season sweep. They beat the Wolverines on their own floor just a few weeks ago, 77-70. Both of these teams are having really good seasons. Michigan is #7 in the AP Poll, and State is just a couple spots behind at #9. Despite that, the Spartans have a 71.9% chance of winning according to the ESPN Match-up Predictor, most likely because they showed they can beat Michigan already, and now have the added advantage of being at home.
Michigan is #7 in both polls, but State is #11 in the coaches poll; they fell 3 spots in each poll respectively after losing to lowly Indiana last week for the second time this year, 63-62 at Indy. Had they scored just one more bucket, and won 64-63, they likely would be a top 5 in both polls. The thing is, though, that it's not easy to beat a team twice in the same season. Indiana did do it against Michigan State this year, so can Michigan State do it against their Big 10 rival Wolverines?
They could, but I don't think they will. I think Michigan is looking for revenge from a few weeks ago. Even if this game is in East Lansing, Ann Arbor fans can easily make the drive and show up to support the Wolverines. Before this past game, Michigan did take the three games prior to that. Basically, one of these teams- whoever wins the Big 10- will be a #1 seed in the tournament, and the Big 10 runner-up will be a #2 seed. Since 2000, when these teams play the final regular season game with the Big 10 on the line- or a share of it- MSU has won all three of those games in 2000, 01, and 10.