That game was a total bore, and man, was it awesome.
After five straight hair-pulling games, our Spartans had this game won from the minute Cassius Winston incinerated the nets with three straight 3-pointers. The only drama, really, was seeing if MSU was going to win by 20 or 30.
With a 87-57 win, it was a 30 piece victory. Let’s break down what we saw.
Before the game I posted three things we wanted to see from MSU against Minnesota. The first was a stress-free win and, more specifically, getting off to a hot start. Well, starting 6-6 from 3-point range to start the game is an absolutely smoldering start. They also held Minnesota to 25 first half points, taking the energy out of The Barn before halftime rolled around.
We’ll get to the other two things we wanted to see, but a few commenters remarked they wanted to see Jaren Jackson bounce back after a forgettable individual game against Purdue. Well...
Jaren Jackson bounced back from his rockiest game as a Spartan with arguably his best, scoring 27 points to go with six rebounds and three blocks. Fifteen of those 27 points came from 5-8 shooting from 3-land, which is one reason he’ll be purchasing a mansion in some NBA lottery city a few months from now.
We’ve got at least five more games with Jackson wearing the green and white. Enjoy them.
Something else we wanted to see was Josh Langford starting to find that shot again after six of his last eight games have ended with 33 percent or lower shooting. His shooting on Tuesday was just OK, going 3-8 from the field and not attempting a single 3-pointer.
However, a stellar performance from Langford wasn’t essential on Tuesday.
The third thing we wanted to see was continued improvement with ball control, and the Spartans ended with 14 turnovers. The most alarming part of that stat is that six of them came from Nick Ward, who was the victim of a few double teams.
I’d imagine that double teams will still be coming at Ward, especially if he keeps turning the ball over at that rate.
You may know this by now, but this 25-3 record is the best record MSU has ever held after 28 games. According to the NCAA Committee, you would still be insane to think this team is anything better than a No. 3 seed.
Miles Bridges had five points tonight, but heck, who cares? We can tell you he didn’t as he was living it up on the bench late in the game.
Miles Bridges went 1-7 tonight. I don't think he cared. In fact, he didn't care one bit. pic.twitter.com/5wsf4GLqrO— Isaac (@WorldofIsaac) February 14, 2018
And let’s tune into “Tonight In Big Ten Officiating,” shall we?
They called this foul on Schilling. pic.twitter.com/uVbSzuIQ2x— David Harns (@DavidHarns) February 14, 2018
Up next our Spartans got Northwestern on Saturday at 2 p.m. The Wildcats lost to Rutgers in overtime minutes after the Spartans beat Minnesota but, more importantly, Northwestern star Bryant McIntosh left the game with a shoulder injury. It will be interesting to see if Northwestern — who has had a very underwhelming season — will have him available this weekend.