The University of Louisville will square off vs. the Michigan State Spartans tomorrow night in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Michigan State lost its opener of 2018-19 vs. Kansas (92-87) in Indianapolis but has gone 5-0 since including wins over #17 UCLA & Texas. Louisville on the other hand is 3-2 and has dropped its last two contest, both in the NIT Tipoff in Brookyln (Tennessee & Marquette).

The Cards have been competitive in both of its losses and it will have to be competitive again if UofL hopes to pull off the upset versus the #11 Michigan State Spartans.

Both teams score at a high rate, but Michigan State wins and wins big because of its defense.  The Spartans are excellent defending the paint and manage to play a physical style without fouling.  In order for the Cards to avoid dropping its 3rd game in a row it MUST find a way to defend much better.

Michigan State has depth and they have a great deal of size off the bench.  Tom Izzo is a well put together group and are led by a pair of guards Cassius Winston and Joshua Langford along with their big guy Nick Ward. The Cards need to disallow the paint and force Michigan State to make jump shots.  Chris Mack would also notch his 4th UofL win if he can get fewer turnovers from Jordan Nwora, a bit more production from VJ King and if Steven Enoch plays much better than he did in Brooklyn.

It will also help if made 3-point baskets are counted as 3s and not 2s.

Team Stats

Louisville Michigan St
Strength of Schedule (Ken Pom) 180th 121st
PPG 86.0 (15th) 89.8 (8th)
Avg Scoring Margin 11.4 (52nd) 23.0 (9th)
Field Goal % 47.4% (66th) 49.2% (29th)
Effective FG% 54.6% (61st) 57.6% (18th)
2-pt FG % 54.5% (78th) 53.4% (104th)
3-pt FG % 36.4% (95th) 42.8% (15th)
FT % 77.3% (30th) 70.1% (153rd)
FT Attempted Per Game 34.4 (2nd) 22.3 (102nd)
Opp FT Attempted Per Game 21.4 (215th) 23.5 (269th)
Rebound Rate 55.1% (41st) 58.7% (9th)
Blocks Per Game 3.4 (156th) 5.5 (16th)
Steals Per Game 5.4 (234th) 5.8 (191st)
Assists Per Game 12.8 (188th) 21.2 (1st)
Turnovers Per Game 12.0 (78th) 12.0 (78th)
Opp Turnovers Per Game 12.4 (240th) 12.2 (252nd)
Team Fouls Per Game 20.0 (221st) 19.7 (206th)
Opp Team Fouls Per Game 25.2 (5th) 21.0 (85th)
Opp Shooting % 43.8% (169th) 37.1% (15th)
Opp Effective FG% 50.5% (181st) 42.3% (13th)
Opp 2-pt FG % 47.3% (102nd) 40.1% (13th)
Opp 3-Pt FG % 37.5% (281st) 31.1% (101st)
Opp Blocks Per Game 3.0 (125th) 4.0 (247th)
Opp Steals Per Game 4.6 (37th) 8.0 (307th)

Starters

Christen Cunningham Cassius Winston
6-2, 190, Sr. 6-0, 185, Jr.
Minutes 24.0 30.0
Points 7.4 18.0
FG % 35.70% 46.30%
3P % 36.40% 45.20%
FT% 81.30% 81.30%
Rebounds 1.4 3.0
Assists 2.4 7.5
Steals 0.4 1.7
Blocks 0.0 0.0
Turnovers 0.8 2.8
Fouls 1.0 2.5
Darius Perry Matt McQuaid
6-2, 195, Soph 6-4, 200, Sr.
Minutes 24 26.8
Points 11.2 7.7
FG % 66.70% 39.00%
3P % 53.80% 36.40%
FT% 86.70% 85.70%
Rebounds 1.4 2.3
Assists 3.0 2.8
Steals 0.8 0.5
Blocks 0.0 0.2
Turnovers 1.2 1.3
Fouls 3.2 2.3
VJ King Joshua Langford
6-6, 215, Jr. 6-5, 210, Jr.
Minutes 23.6 28.5
Points 9.6 18.5
FG % 32.40% 51.30%
3P % 25.00% 47.50%
FT% 77.80% 85.70%
Rebounds 4.6 4
Assists 1.0 1.5
Steals 0.4 0.5
Blocks 0.0 0.2
Turnovers 1.8 2.0
Fouls 2.2 2.7
Dwayne Sutton Kenny Goins
6-5, 215, Jr. 6-7, 230, Sr.
Minutes 28.2 25.2
Points 6.4 6.8
FG % 40.9% 42.40%
3P % 46.2% 28.60%
FT% 72.7% 69.20%
Rebounds 5.4 9.0
Assists 1.4 2.0
Steals 1.0 0.5
Blocks 0.2 0.7
Turnovers 1.6 1.0
Fouls 3.0 2.5
Steven Enoch Nick Ward
6-10, 260, Jr. 6-8, 245, Jr.
Minutes 19.6 19.7
Points 10.4 13.8
FG % 59.30% 57.10%
3P % 67% 0.00%
FT% 85.70% 62.80%
Rebounds 4.4 6.2
Assists 0.2 1.7
Steals 0.0 0.3
Blocks 1.0 1.5
Turnovers 1.6 1.5
Fouls 2.2 1.7

Bench

Ryan McMahon Foster Loyer
6-0, 180, Jr. 6-0, 170, Fr.
Minutes 18.2 6.7
Points 7.2 2.7
FG % 43.50% 45.50%
3P % 35.30% 20.00%
FT% 100.00% 100.00%
Rebounds 1.0 0.5
Assists 2.2 1.2
Steals 0.8 0.0
Blocks 0.2 0.0
Turnovers 0.8 0.7
Fouls 1.2 1.0
Khwan Fore Kyle Ahrens
6-0, 185, Sr. 6-6, 210, Jr.
Minutes 16.8 15.3
Points 3.4 5.7
FG % 41.70% 50.00%
3P % 40.00% 36.40%
FT% 45.55% 100.00%
Rebounds 0.8 2.3
Assists 1.0 1.0
Steals 0.4 0.7
Blocks 0.0 0.2
Turnovers 0.4 0.7
Fouls 0.8 1.0
Jordan Nwora Aaron Henry
6-8, 215, Soph 6-6, 218, Fr.
Minutes 25.4 14.8
Points 18.4 5.3
FG % 50.80% 50.00%
3P % 30.80% 66.70%
FT% 85.70% 57.10%
Rebounds 7.2 3.2
Assists 0.8 1.0
Steals 1.0 0.7
Blocks 0.4 0.3
Turnovers 2.6 0.8
Fouls 2.0 1.7
Akoy Agau Xavier Tillman
6-8, 235, Sr. 6-8, 260, Soph
Minutes 12.3 18
Points 8.0 5.7
FG % 63.6% 66.70%
3P % 0.0% 50.00%
FT% 83.3% 38.50%
Rebounds 4.7 6.7
Assists 0.3 2.0
Steals 0.0 0.8
Blocks 0.7 1.5
Turnovers 0.7 1.8
Fouls 2.0 2.8
Malik Williams Marcus Bingham
6-11, 215, Soph 6-11, 235, Fr.
Minutes 14.6 6
Points 6.2 2.5
FG % 47.60% 36.40%
3P % 0.0% 57.10%
FT% 52.40% 75.00%
Rebounds 4.2 1.7
Assists 0.6 0.2
Steals 0.6 0.0
Blocks 1.0 1.0
Turnovers 0.6 0.5
Fouls 3.0 0.7
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@UofLSheriff50. Louisville native, University of Louisville Business School Grad c/o 2004. Co-Founder of TheCrunchZone.com

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