Like the unsettling effect of a dolly zoom, the light at the end of Michigan State's injury tunnel seems to remain at the same distance no matter how fast Tom Izzo runs towards it.

Thursday marked the return of Adreian Payne and possibly the halfway point of Branden Dawson's recovery. But the Spartans' 82-67 win over Penn State also marked the first game of the season without Keith Appling.

"I can't tell you what it was like yesterday," Izzo said. "I'm sitting in my office preparing for practice. I talked to Keith the night before and it sounded like things were getting better. Then the trainer calls and says, 'He can hardly move his wrist.'"

Appling's wrist injury began when he hit the deck against North Carolina back on Dec.4 and has been re-aggravated multiple times since. Until Thursday night, it had not cost the senior a game. In fact, Appling hadn't missed a game his entire career.

Now the question is: When will he return?

"I have no idea," Izzo said. "This has been the most frustrating. It's beyond disgusting. I have no timeframe. I know he won't practice tomorrow. Whether he does on Saturday or plays Sunday or whether we're going (to Wisconsin) without him. I wish I could tell you. If I knew, I'd tell you."