No. 13 seed MSU (10-21) will now face fifth-seeded Tennessee (19-11) in a 2:30 p.m. start Thursday afternoon in the tournament's second round. The game will be shown regionally on the SEC Network.
The Bulldogs hit 7-of-15 shots from 3-point range and did not trail in the game's final half.
Fred Thomas led MSU with a career-high 21 points, including a 4-of-8 night from 3-point range. Colin Borchert added 11 points, while Gavin Ware had 10 points, as MSU won its tournament opener for the first time in three seasons.