Almost instantly, it was clear it would be a different kind of night for Michigan State.
No early jitters ... leading to early mistakes ... leading to a large, early deficit. The Spartans came to play with much more conviction Tuesday on this continent than they did Friday in Europe.
And they got a major victory -- and a breakout performance from junior point guard Keith Appling -- to show for it. Appling had the two key baskets in a 13-5 run to end the game, delivering a 67-64 win for the No. 21 Spartans over No. 7 Kansas at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
"I think the good news is we got a little bit of our pride and character back after not playing as good over there," coach Tom Izzo said of MSU's first preconference win over a top-10 team since 2008 against No. 5 Texas in Houston. "It shows me a lot of character on these guys' part."