Iowa Hawkeyes at Michigan State Spartans

Iowa Hawkeyes Preview

Iowa Hawkeyes big man Luka Garza is on the short list for national player of the year honors, averaging 23.7 points and 9.6 rebounds while hitting 38 percent from 3-point range (35 of 92). The 6-foot-11 junior should be a matchup nightmare against Michigan State, with a size and/or skill advantage over the Spartans’ post players, including 6-foot-8 Xavier Tillman.

Iowa pairs Garza with a solid 3-point shooting effort (35.1 percent) to rank as the nation’s fifth-most efficient offense, according to Iowa is coming off an 85-76 win over hot Ohio State on Thursday, its sixth victory over a ranked opponent, the Hawkeyes’ most in a season since 2006.

Michigan State Spartans Preview

The Michigan State Spartans have lost four of the past six games, but they did win their only contest last week, an 86-65 decision at lowly Nebraska on Thursday. Michigan State offset its 22 turnovers by shooting 51.6 percent and getting a game-high 23 from star guard Cassius Winston, who posted his 14th 20-point effort of the season.

The Spartans effectively played about half of the game with a small-ball lineup, with 6-foot-6 Kyle Ahrens moving from small forward to power forward. That will be something to watch moving forward, and the Spartans hope to continue to see more from their supporting cast, including sophomore forwards Gabe Brown (career-high 17 vs. Nebraska) and Aaron Henry (13 points, nine rebounds).