Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Michigan St Spartans Pick & Prediction DECEMBER 10th 2023

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A pair of teams coming off losses in their Big Ten Conference openers meet up Sunday when Nebraska faces Michigan State in Lincoln, Neb.

The Spartans (4-4, 0-1) lost 70-57 to visiting Wisconsin on Tuesday, their largest margin of defeat at home in almost three years. It also tied them for the worst eight-game start in the past 20 years by a team that was ranked in the top 5 of the preseason Associated Press poll.

“We are not tough enough right now, and that’s all me,” Michigan State coach Tom Izzo said. “I’m going to get it, fixed so blame me, not the players.”

Tyson Walker, the Spartans’ top scorer at 20.7 points per game, put up 22 points vs. the Badgers.

The Cornhuskers (7-2, 0-1) lost 76-65 at Minnesota on Wednesday, their second straight setback since producing their best start to a season since 1992-93. Nebraska led by 17 late in the first half against the Golden Gophers but then allowed 52 points in the second half.

“We gotta find a killer instinct,” Nebraska coach Fred Hoiberg said. “We gotta be able to stomp on a team when they’re down, and we let them right back in it.”

Brice Williams, who scored a game-high 18 points against Minnesota, leads Nebraska with an average of 14 points per game.

Michigan State began the season with a surprising home loss to James Madison, which is now ranked No. 18, and its other defeats all came against teams currently in the Top 25. With a game coming up Dec. 16 in Detroit against No. 6 Baylor, Nebraska counts as a must-win game for the Spartans.

Michigan State is holding opponents to 63.3 points per game and just 37.1 percent shooting, but the Spartans have been outrebounded three times and are making only 27.5 percent of their 3-point shots.

Nebraska held its first five foes to 56.4 points per game and none shot better than 37.9 percent, but over the past four contests, the Cornhuskers are allowing 79 points per game on 44.8 percent shooting.

Michigan State hasn’t started 0-2 in Big Ten play since 2020-21, while Nebraska is trying to avoid a fourth consecutive 0-2 start to the conference slate.

–Field Level Media

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