EAST LANSING, MICH., NOV. 14 -- Normally when Michigan State and Indiana meet it is for something called, no lie, the Old Brass Spittoon. But today that inelegant prize was set aside for another, the Big Ten championship, and the No. 13 Spartans are taking the title to the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1966.

That title is ordinarily played for in Ann Arbor, Mich., or Columbus, Ohio, not before a capacity Spartan Stadium crowd of 76,411. But anyone who saw Michigan State shame No. 16 Indiana by the score of 27-3 will cheerfully accept the aberration, if only because of Lorenzo White, and the touching exuberance with which the Spartans greeted so unfamiliar a prize.

In his final home game, the Heisman Trophy hopeful rushed for 292 yards, a career high, on 56 carries, one shy of the NCAA record. He had a first-quarter touchdown of five yards and the capper from one yard out in the third period. The Spartans spotted Indiana a first-possession field goal, took a 17-3 halftime lead, squelched Hoosiers comeback hopes with a 90-yard second-half kickoff return, and the game still wasn't over with 22 seconds left when fans stormed the field, goalposts went down and players wept.

"All I can say is, I've been dreaming this for a long time," White said.

Skeptics will point out that Ohio State and Michigan are clearly not themselves this season, but there were no skeptics here. When Coach George Perles promised to put championship rings on the Spartans' fingers as he took over a 2-9 team five years ago, it invited first some scoffing and, going into this season, speculation on his job. Not now.

His team's dominance of Indiana was inarguable as the Spartans (7-2-1) moved to 6-0-1 in the league and dropped the Hoosiers (7-3) into a second-place tie at 5-2 with Michigan and Iowa, each with a game left.

Complementing White's effort, the Spartans scored on a 22-yard pass from Bobby McAllister to Andre Rison, and field goals of 47 and 21 yards by John Langeloh. The latter followed the 90-yard kickoff return, to the Indiana 8, by Blake Ezor. White's closing touchdown was set up by a 41-yard broken-play keeper by McAllister that ended with his helmet hitting the corner goal marker.

"I could smell roses," said McAllister.

The MSU defense, first in the nation against the rush and third overall, limited Indiana to 33 yards rushing, and 180 yards total compared to 408 for the Spartans.

"It certainly is a beautiful day," said Perles, whose only other championships came as an assitant coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers during their Super Bowl years in the 1970s. "They are good kids and I'm a good guy. We built it. We hoped for it and wished for it and worked for it. It wasn't easy, and now we have to stay there."

It was a sorrowful finish for an Indiana team that had provided much of the excitement in an otherwise desultory conference this season, and which has not been to a Rose Bowl since Jan. 1, 1968. Like the Spartans, the Hoosiers accomplished upsets of Michigan and Ohio State, and anticipated a miracle. Their last three games, they had come from behind to win. But Michigan State, a September loser by 31-8 to Notre Dame and 31-3 to Florida State before settling down to Big Ten action, has not relinquished a lead all year.

"They'll represent us in a class fashion," said Indiana Coach Bill Mallory, who four years ago took over an 0-11 team. "They won it fair and square."

It was safe to call this game the most important one in two decades for both teams, who had not been treated kindly by recent history. But Spartans fans could remember the Duffy Daugherty era of 1954-72, including great seasons in 1965 and 1966, with one Rose Bowl trip followed by a 9-0-1 campaign, with a famous tie against Notre Dame, in which the Big Ten's no-repeat rule then in effect kept them out of a return to Pasadena. Fittingly, a campus memorial service for Daugherty, who died several weeks ago, was held this morning.

Perhaps because Indiana lacks the history of Michigan State, the Hoosiers never seemed entirely to believe they were in this game, even after driving 42 yards for the opening score. The Spartans intimidated them in every way, holding the ball for 40:17 of the 60 minutes.

"They had beaten teams that could run the ball and they had beaten teams that could throw," Indiana quarterback Dave Kramme said. "But we didn't think they had beaten teams that could do both."

"When {the Hoosiers offense} looked into our eyes, it was a nightmare," defensive tackle Travis Davis said. "They looked at us like, "Hey, those guys are crazy.' "

But nothing was as staggering as White's performance as he broke his MSU record for carries, previously 53, and was just shy of the record of 57 set by Kent Kitzmann of Minnesota against Illinois in 1977. White's previous best yardage (286) came against Indiana two years ago.

Today, "He played possessed," Mallory said.

Late in the third quarter, Perles realized White was record-bound. He called him to the sideline and told him he would stay in, no matter the score -- "I did something I never do. I told Lorenzo, 'I owe you.' "

White reached 4,421 career yards, 15th on the NCAA all-time list.

During the game he passed Notre Dame's Allen Pinkett, Navy's Napoleon McCallum and Auburn's Bo Jackson, and he says he should win the Heisman.

"I feel I deserve to win it," he said, but he is an underdog to Notre Dame's Tim Brown. "I don't know what it takes. What do you need?" Indiana 3 0 0 0 3 Michigan St. 0 17 10 0 27

I -- FG Stoyanovich 49

MSU -- White 5 run (Langeloh kick)

MSU -- Rison 22 pass from McAllister (Langeloh kick)

MSU -- FG Langeloh 47

MSU -- FG Langeloh 21

MSU -- White 1 run (Langeloh kick)

A -- 76,411

Indiana Michigan St. First downs 8 20 Rushes-yards 18-33 69-341 Passing yards 147 67 Return yards 8 30 Passing 11-28-3 5-5-0 Punts-average 5-41 2-41 Fumbles-lost 2-1 3-1 Penalties-yards 3-34 8-75 Time o

RUSHING -- Indiana: Thompson 10-23, Polce 4-24, Jones 1-minus 2, Kramme 3-minus 12. Michigan St.: White 56-

PASSING -- Indiana: Kramme 11-28-3, 147 yards. Michigan St.: McAllister 5-5-0, 67.

RECEIVING -- Indiana: Jorden 3-39, Buford 3-46, Thompson 3-14, Jones 2-48. Michigan St.: Rison 2-41, White