5 Things you Need to Know for Wednesday, January 22nd
1. Michigan State's basketball team stayed undefeated in Big 10 play, fighting off a pesky Indiana team 71-66. The Spartans were without Adreian Payne once again, and Gary Harris picked up the scoring slack with 24 points on 8-13 shooting. Harris also added five steals.
MSU went on a 21-6 run in the second half that turned a five point deficit into a 10 point lead. The third-ranked Spartans are now 18-1 and 7-0 in conference.
2. The Lions have hired former Saints assistant Joe Lombardi as their new offensive coordinator. Lombardi had been the Saints' quarterbacks coach since 2009. Yes, he is the grandson of the great Vince Lombardi.
Lombardi had some interesting comments yesterday, saying "Matthew Stafford is not broken". It is unknown whether he will call the plays, but it appears that the Lions may have landed a young, up and coming coach.
3. Jackson Lumen Christi took control of the CAAC Gold with a huge 57-50 win over Waverly. This game lost a little bit of its luster from a fan's standpoint when Lumen's star point guard Khari Willis was ruled out with an ankle injury. It lost a little more when Waverly's star guard Marcus Moore picked up his second foul less than two minutes into the game. Moore sat for the rest of the first half, and was never able to get into a rhythm in the second half.
Lumen was the bigger of the two teams, and out-rebounded Waverly 32-23. Big man Matt Bullinger was awfully impressive, scoring 20 points and grabbing 13 rebounds. Transfer Devin Edwards scored 20 points in his first game as a Titan; coach Rick Karasek told me that Edwards will slide over to shooting guard when Willis returns to action.
4. Michigan puts their undefeated conference record on the line tonight in a big time contest with #10 Iowa. The Hawkeyes are also in the mix at the top of the conference with a 4-1 record. They are the leading the league in scoring, averaging 81.8 points in those five contests. Iowa is also the best three-point shooting team in the Big 10.'
5. The Red Wings rekindle an original six rivalry tonight against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Hawks are second in points in the NHL, but are still regarded as the best team in the league. There was realignment this past off-season that put these two longtime Central division rivals into separate conferences. This is the only time Chicago will visit Joe Louis Arena this year. Jimmy Howard is out with an injury, and Jonas Gustavsson will get the start in goal.