The Spartans (15-2, 3-1 Big Ten) lasted just one week at the top spot in the rankings, the shortest of its five different stays at No. 1. Villanova, the team Michigan State passed one week ago, reclaimed its spot at the top on Monday. No. 2 West Virginia and No. 3 Virginia also passed Michigan State.
The loss on Sunday ended Michigan State’s 14-game winning streak as well as any talks about whether the Spartans might go undefeated in conference play. They have now fallen into a tie for third place behind 4-0 Purdue and Ohio State.
Michigan State’s stretch of hot shooting ended with a performance in which it posted a 44.9 effective field goal percentage. The Spartans hit 7 of 25 shots from 3-point range. Ohio State, meanwhile, ended with a 58.5 effective field goal percentage.
Michigan State has been dominant in a 10-0 start at home, winning by an average of 34.9 points per game. However, the Spartans did not play a single true road game during the nonconference slate and have struggled in their two Big Ten games away from home. They survived Rutgers with a 62-52 win in their lowest-scoring outing of the year on Dec. 5 before falling to the Buckeyes.
Fortunately for coach Tom Izzo and his team, their next three games will be played in the welcoming atmosphere of the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Mich. That stretch will start with a second game against Rutgers on Wednesday. The game is scheduled for a 7 p.m. ET tip on the Big Ten Network.