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BriefCap -- Michigan State 76, Purdue 62 -- Spartans Alone In First Place

Welcome to the BriefCap. In short, it's a brief recap until we get enough numbers, stats and such to break down the game.

The first half was an exercise in frustration defensive for MSU; as good as the Spartans were offensively (especially Derrick Nix -- he had a two minute stretch where he grabbed a metaphorical Starman and was scoring everything) it seemed as if they didn't know how to stop Lewis Jackson from driving to the basket or Robbie Hummel in any capacity. MSU went to the locker room at halftime down three.

The second half though -- YUUUSSSSS. Draymond Green recovered from picking up two cheap fouls in the first half and looked every bit the Big Ten Player of the Year and All-American candidate he is, going for 20 points, 10 rebounds, and 7 assists total. That was his 5th game with 20+ points, 10+ boards and 5+ assists; no one else in Division 1 has more than two such games.

And Branden Dawson, in a GIF:


via -- Thanks to @WorldOfIsaac at for the GIF.

Dawson also had a double-double, scoring 15 points and 11 rebounds, if he wanted to annoy those few Purdue fans who somehow think he was bought by M$U (LOL), he certainly did so. His 15 points were third on the team to ...wait for it...Austin Thornton's 17. Thornton took open shots when he had them, got a few rebounds, and didn't turn the ball over. It's hard to understate just how much Thornton's emergence had meant for this team. For now, MSU has a one-game lead in the Big Ten with four games to go.

So celebrate here, and we'll have more later.