Lourawls “Tum Tum” Nairn walked off the Breslin Center court for the final time on Wednesday night. Nairn, along with seniors Gavin Schilling and Ben Carter, were honored in the closing seconds of MSU’s 81-61 win, which clinched at least a share of the 2018 Big Ten Regular Season title. Spartans coach Tom Izzo started Nairn, Schilling and Carter in place of Cassius Winston, Nick Ward and Jaren Jackson Jr.
Izzo took advantage of a 20-point margin with less than a minute remaining to give his seniors a traditional sendoff. One by one, they checked out of the game, saluting the crowd and dropping to the floor to kiss the Spartan logo at center court.
After the blowout win, third-year captain Nairn got to hoist the league championship trophy and took the microphone to address the Breslin Center crowd.
“I’m just going to tell you one thing-we’re not done,” Nairn said as the fans erupted in screams and cheers. “This is something I couldn’t dream of if I wanted to. I’m just extremely humbled by it and thankful to be able to call this team and myself Big Ten champions.”
Nairn, who started 66 games over the course of his four-year career, said that the team’s focus has now shifted to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Tournament next month.
MSU has one final regular-season game Sunday at Wisconsin, where it can clinch the league title outright for the first time since 2009 and only the third in Izzo’s tenure. The Spartans have won 11 straight and look to improve their seeding ahead of the Big Ten conference championships, which begin on Wednesday, February 8.