A third quarter collapse cost Detroit as the Pistons fall to the Minnesota Timberwolves 105-82 on Tuesday night.
Tubby Smith was hailed as a rescuer when he came to Minnesota from Kentucky in 2007, a championship-certified coach who would restore a once-proud program to respectability after it was brought down by scandal.
Damien Brunner and Pavel Datsyuk scored for Detroit, which has lost three straight for the first time since March 10-21 of last season.
Gary Harris scored 15 points and Keith Appling added 14 points before leaving the game with an injury to help No. 12 Michigan State bounce back from a poor first half to beat No. 18 Minnesota 61-50 Wednesday night.
Injuries are a concern for Michigan State, but having Gary Harris available may quell some worries.
The Spartans held the Golden Gophers tight until the final minutes of the game but Minnesota went on to beat Michigan State 76-63 on Monday.
The Big Ten widely is considered the premier conference in the nation, with No. 11 Minnesota and No. 19 Michigan State among the league’s six ranked teams.
Le’Veon Bell patiently looked for openings before he trampled through Minnesota’s defense and dragged some of the Gophers with him.
Calvin Johnson had 207 yards on 12 catches, including a touchdown but the Detroit Lions fall short losing to the Minnesota Vikings 34-24 on Sunday.
For the Lions, star receiver Calvin Johnson (knee) and defensive end Cliff Avril (back) are active after being listed as questionable.