The college basketball season begins in early November, so next month we’ll take a closer look at the entire conference, not just the Indiana roster. Today, our team’s preview continues to look at Michigan.
According to Michigan standards, I was disappointed in East Lansing last season. For the first time in Ken Pom’s rating, Sparta finished out of the top 50 with an overall score of only 15-13.
Still, Michigan surged late and held the 23rd consecutive NCAA tournament under Tom Izzo. Sparta eventually fell to Final Four participant UCLA in the first four games at West Lafayette.
This season, Spartans aim to be more consistent despite losing Aaron Henry, who started early to pursue a professional career. Michigan State University does not return double-digit scorers, but this is a roster with solid depth in multiple positions.
The northeastern transfer Tyson Walker displays a number to get the first crack at the starting guard position. The 6-foot guard averaged 18.8 points, 4.8 assists and 2.4 steals last season and was named the top defender of the Colonial Athletic Association. Second grade AJ Hogard started eight games last season, giving depth behind Walker. Freshman Jayden Akins may also challenge the backup minutes at that point. Akins was a better athlete than Hogard and was one of the top 55 newcomers in the 2021 class.
Freshman McDonald’s All-American Max Christie should be an immediate influence as a backcourt scorer. 6ft 6 freshmen may participate in conversations for the league’s top newcomers. Christie will be joined by Gabriel Brown, a 6-foot-8 junior who shot 42 percent of the stars from a distance last season. Brown started just five games last season, but should be in the lineup this year after Henry leaves.
Joey Hauser was disappointed last season after moving from Marquette. Hauser shot more than 42% of Marquette’s freshmen in three seconds, compared to only 34% last season for Spartans. He was also defensively responsible. Michigan State University is looking for a bounce season from Hauser. Hauser’s main value is stretch fours.
Malik Hall participates in the rotation as a starter or as the first man off the bench. The 6’7 forward was one of the Big Ten’s most aggressive rebounders last season. He also shot 53% in 2 seconds last season and is one of the most physical players on the roster.
Marcus Bingham, a 6-foot-11 senior, should be the five starters Julius Marble and Madissico are trying to back up. Bingham is a very good shot blocker with little discomfort. Izzo said on Big Ten Media Day that Bingham improved his power. This is important for the Big Ten, which is full of top scorers on the front court. Both Sissoko and Marble are only 6 feet 8 and need to provide physics to the paint.
Conclusion: Michigan is elected in the middle of the league. This feels like a fair starting point from last season. Christie and Walker can form a very good backcoat, but the Spartans need Hauser to be much better in his second big ten season. Hall and Brown are the two most underrated players in the league. Michigan has a solid depth of 5, but its big is behind the league’s highest center. This should be a tournament team for 24 consecutive seasons, but Spartans need some role players to successfully step into more prominent roles in order to finish in the top tier of the competitive Big Ten.
Can be quoted: “It worked very well. So far, I feel there are 8, 9 and 10 players. We have to make those decisions. What is football with one quarterback? Unlike, in basketball you can definitely play with two people. How Tyson shoots it, I think these guys can play with them too. I think you’ll see some of them.
“You still usually win the championship with the guards. The guards must be good. I think you can see them playing with them. We are the first I think these decisions are made between Tyson and AJ because I think they are 32 days away from the game. They are both from the same head of the country, Philadelphia, New Jersey, New York. They are very good. I’m a friend. It’s seamless so far. “-Izzo on Big Ten Media Day on rotation and point guard positions.
– NBA Sports
2021-22 ITH Season Preview: Michigan State Spartans-Inside the Hall
https://www.insidethehall.com/2021/10/13/2021-22-ith-season-preview-michigan-state-spartans/ 2021-22 ITH Season Preview: Michigan State Spartans-Inside the Hall