Apparently, the Michigan State Spartans want to make it abundantly clear that they want a spot in the 2011 NCAA Tournament.
They've just gone into the locker room at half time in Indianapolis, and Sparty holds a 14-point lead over the second-seeded Purdue Boilermakers, 37-23.
For Michigan State, guard Kalin Lucas. . .who was questionable to play in this game at all with an ankle injury, has been on fire, hitting 7-of-10 from the field and leading everyone with 18 points at the break. JaJuan Johnson has 10 at halftime for the Boilermakers, but nobody else on the Purdue side of the ledger has more than four.
The big difference thus far has been three-point shooting, with the Spartans having hit 7-of-9 from behind the arc, while the Boilermakers have hit only 1-of-10 from long range.
Michigan State would likely solidify itself as the sixth Big Ten team in the big dance with a victory this evening, and they're well on their way to doing so. Of course, lots of people probably thought the same about Illinois earlier today as well, and the Illini are heading home after falling to Michigan's big second-half comeback.
The second half is about to get underway in this 2011 Big Ten Tournament match-up. We'll be back with a recap when it's all said and done.