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Fox Sports: Michigan in, MSU out of NCAA Tournament

The Detroit News
Moritz Wagner, left, Zak Irvin and D.J. Wilson

The first NCAA Tournament projection by Fox Sports’ Stewart Mandel has Michigan in the 68-team field but Michigan State missing the Big Dance.

Mandel projects a No. 9 seed for Michigan (10-3), which opens Big Ten play Sunday at Iowa.

The Spartans, who begin their conference schedule Tuesday night at Minnesota, are 8-5, but could improve their tournament outlook soon with the return of leading scorer and rebounder Miles Bridges.

If the Spartans do miss the tournament, it would break their streak of 19 consecutive appearances, the third-longest active streak behind Kansas (27 straight) and Duke (21).

Mandel’s No. 1 seeds are Villanova, Baylor, Kansas and UCLA. He also has Northwestern as a No. 8 seed; the Wildcats have never played in an NCAA Tournament.

MSU faces tall order in Big Ten opener vs. 12-1 Minnesota