EAST LANSING, MI - FEBRUARY 06:  Denzel Valentine #45 of the Michigan State Spartans is embraced by teammates as he leaves the floor after completing a double double with 11 rebounds and 11 points while playing the Penn State Nittany Lions at the Jack T. Breslin Student Events Center on February 6, 2014 in East Lansing, Michigan. Michigan State won the game 82-67. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Amid Injuries, Adjustments, MSU Looks To Avoid Second Straight Loss

While hosting Northwestern might seem like an ideal opportunity for the Spartans to get back on track, Tom Izzo is wary of the Wildcats.

CBS Detroit–02/13/2014

CHICAGO IL - JANUARY 28: Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter speaks at a press conference as Leo W. Gerard, President of the Steelworkers (R), listens on January 28 2014 at  The Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago Illinois. Citing what they deem as the NCAA's abdication of responsibility to protect athletes from injury, the College Athletes Association (CAPA) announced the creation of the new labor organization to represent college football and basketball players.  (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

Looking Ahead: What Effect Could College Player Unions Eventually Have On UM, MSU?

Sports Illustrated legal analyst Michael McCann expects players from more schools to pursue unionization.

CBS Detroit–01/29/2014

EVANSTON, IL - NOVEMBER 23: Kain Colter #2 of the Northwestern Wildcats throws a pass over the arms of Tyler Hoover #91 of the Michigan State Spartans during the first half November 23, 2013 at  Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

Northwestern Football Players Apply For Unionization, A Decision MSU Professors Encouraged In 2006

While salaries for athletes is not something the CAPA is currently listing as a demand, the safe bet says it could be eventually, putting the $5.15 billion in revenue of the athletic departments of the five power conferences up for grabs, reports ESPN.

CBS Detroit–01/28/2014

EVANSTON, IL - JANUARY 15: Head coach Tom Izzo of the Michigan State Spartans reacts after calling a time out against the Northwestern Wildcats at Welsh-Ryan Arena on January 15, 2014 in Evanston, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Harris Leads Spartans Past Northwestern 54-40

Gary Harris scored 14 points and No. 4 Michigan State beat Northwestern 54-40 on Wednesday night for its ninth straight win.

97.1 The Ticket–01/15/2014

MADISON, WI - JANUARY 08: Head Coach John Groce of the Illinois Fighting Illini watches the game from the sidelines during the first half of play against the Wisconsin Badgers at Kohl Center on January 08, 2014 in Madison, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)

Rice, No. 23 Illinois Fall 49-43 To Northwestern

John Groce liked a lot of what No. 23 Illinois did on Sunday. They just didn’t do enough of it on offense.

97.1 The Ticket–01/12/2014

IOWA CITY, IA - DECEMBER 3: Center Gabriel Olaseni #0 and forward Melsahn Basabe #1 of the Iowa Hawkeyes walk off the court following their match-up against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on December 3, 2013 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa. (Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images)

Foul-Plagued Northwestern Loses At Iowa, 93-67

Even at full strength, Northwestern figured to have a tough time with No. 20 Iowa.


Jordan Morgan #52 of the Michigan Wolverines reacts during game. FILE (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)

Michigan Routs Northwestern 74-51

Michigan won again without McGary, the star big man who is out indefinitely with a back injury.

97.1 The Ticket–01/05/2014

Dan Vitale #40 of the Northwestern Wildcats is tackled by Taiwan Jones #34 of the Michigan State Spartans during the first half on November 23, 2013 at Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

No. 13 Michigan State beats Northwestern, 30-6

Cook threw for two touchdowns. Langford ran for two scores, and the Spartans (10-1, 7-0) reached the conference title game for the second time in three years.

97.1 The Ticket–11/23/2013

Running back Jeremy Langford #33 of the Michigan State Spartans (Photo by Eric Francis/Getty Images) FILE

Michigan State-Northwestern Preview Capsule

Michigan State is one win from its second Big Ten championship game in three seasons and two from the best conference record in school history.

97.1 The Ticket–11/22/2013

Devin Gardner #98 of the Michigan Wolverines looks to pass. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Gardner Lifts Michigan Over Northwestern In 3OT

Devin Gardner scored on a 5-yard run to lift Michigan to a 27-19 triple-overtime victory over Northwestern on Saturday after the Wolverines’ Brendan Gibbons tied it with a 44-yard field goal at the end of regulation.

97.1 The Ticket–11/16/2013