With the dust mostly settled on rosters for the 2023-24 season, we’re going team-by-team in the Big Ten to assess where everyone stands and how things could shake out next year.
Next up is Michigan State, who finished fourth in the Big Ten last year at 11-8, and went 21-13 overall. The Spartans were the last conference team standing in the NCAA Tournament, getting to the Sweet 16 before falling to Kansas State in overtime.
- Joey Hauser (14.4 PPG)
- Pierre Brooks (3.6 PPG)
- Tyson Walker, G, (14.8 PPG)
- A.J. Hoggard, G, (12.9 PPG)
- Jaden Akins, G, (9.8 PPG)
- Malik Hall, F, (8.9 PPG)
- Mady Sissoko, C, (5.1 PPG)
- Jaxon Kohler, F, (3.0 PPG)
- Carson Cooper, C, (1.6 PPG)
- Tre Holloman, G, (1.3 PPG)
Freshmen (Rankings from 247Sports Composite)
- Xavier Booker, C, No. 14
- Jeremy Fears, PG, No. 31
- Coen Carr, PF, No. 33
- Gehrig Normand, SF, No. 120
RETURNING MINUTES: 77.2 percent (per barttorvik.com)
WHY IT WILL WORK
The Spartans have a majority of its team back from last year, when they reached the Sweet 16. Tyson Walker is a big-game player and one of the best returning guards in the Big Ten. He, Jaden Akins, and A.J. Hoggard form one of the strongest backcourts in the conference. Michigan State is bringing in the No. 5 recruiting class in the country (per 247Sports), and none of the four freshmen will be rushed along because of how much experience is back. But the three top-5o recruits could add even more firepower to an already good team.
WHY IT WON’T
If the touted freshmen don’t make the impact they’ll be expected to at Michigan State, it could hurt the team’s ceiling. MSU’s lack of transfer portal acquisitions is a noteworthy strategy in the modern era of college basketball. The Spartans have enough talent returning for it to not be necessary, but if they suffer a few injuries or bad breaks, people will wonder if transfers would’ve helped make up the difference. And MSU lost its highest-volume 3-point shooter from last year in Joey Hauser; there’s little reason to think Walker and Akins couldn’t handle a slightly higher volume, but if that becomes an issue, Hauser’s loss would be felt.
Michigan State looks pretty loaded for next season. The Spartans have a lot of talent and experience coming back, and one of the top recruiting classes in the country. And obviously, there’s no doubt about the production Tom Izzo can get out of a group like this. If things break right for the Spartans next year, this could be a Final Four-caliber team. Purdue may be the reigning champions and prohibitive Big Ten favorites, but Michigan State is every bit as imposing.
BIG TEN OUTLOOK: Contenders
PRIOR ROSTER ANALYSES:
The Daily Hoosier –“Where Indiana fans assemble when they’re not at Assembly”
- Find us on Facebook: thedailyhoosier
- You can follow us on Twitter: @daily_hoosier
- Seven ways to support completely free IU coverage at no cost to you.