Michigan State faces tough test vs No. 22 Illinois

Michigan State (16-8, 8-5) vs. No. 22 Illinois (16-7, 8-4)

State Farm Center, Champaign, Illinois; Tuesday, 9 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: No. 22 Illinois presents a tough challenge for Michigan State. Michigan State has won two of its four games against ranked teams this season. Illinois has dropped to No. 22 in the latest AP rankings following a loss to Maryland last week.

TEAM LEADERS: Xavier Tillman and Cassius Winston have led the Spartans. Tillman is averaging 13.4 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.2 blocks while Winston is putting up 17.8 points and 5.6 assists per game. The Fighting Illini have been led by Kofi Cockburn and Ayo Dosunmu. Cockburn has averaged 13.8 points and nine rebounds while Dosunmu has put up 15.8 points and 4.1 rebounds per game.


CREATING OFFENSE: Winston has been directly responsible for 56 percent of all Michigan State field goals over the last three games. The senior guard has 22 field goals and 18 assists in those games.

WINLESS WHEN: The Spartans are 0-5 when they score 66 points or fewer and 16-3 when they exceed 66 points. The Fighting Illini are 0-5 when allowing 72 or more points and 16-2 when holding opponents below 72.

PERFECT WHEN: Michigan State is a perfect 11-0 when it holds an opponent to 62 points or fewer. The Spartans are 5-8 when opponents score more than 62.

STIFLING STATE: Michigan State has held opposing teams to 37.5 percent shooting from the field this year, the seventh-lowest percentage among all Division I teams.


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