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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Michigan State

Michigan State will win the Big Ten Conference regular season if Delvon Roe gets/stays healthy. He would be the top frosh in the conference if he didn't have micro fracture surgery (the thing Greg Oden had) ten months ago. He is trying a quick recovery. Tom Izzo said he is about 60% right now. Even though he is not completely healthy he still can help the Spartans. He is a very smart player which is usually a characteristic of the nonathletic players. Once he regains his full athletic ability he will be fun to watch.

The Spartans are slightly undersized at the guards, but have superior quickness. They are very deep as they want to play up tempo while applying a lot of pressure on the basketball. Gordon Suton is back for his senior year and I expect him to up his play. He has always shown flashes of being a good player but lacked the consistency. I predict he puts it together this year and helps the Spartans big time.

Raymar Morgan could contend for player of the year in the conference. He is super athletic and can play inside and outside. They will be running a lot this year and he should get a lot of "easy" (you have to work hard to get easy points) points in transition. He definitely lacked consistency last year and Michigan State will only go as far as he takes them.

I expect Michigan State to be in the top 10 range nationally all year. They might not be a top 5 team, but somewhere right outside of that. They have the talent, but I have to question if they have quite enough experience to make a deep run in the tournament. Only time will tell.

Early Thoughts: Wisconsin

I just watched the first half of the Wisconsin-Long Beach State game. Long Beach came out playing well from the start. They are coached by Dan Monson who is the former Minnesota coach.

Wisconsin is pretty young especially for a Badger team. They usually like to play upperclassmen for the majority of the minutes. They are still experienced compared to most teams just not up to par with the "Wisconsin style."

They didn't look good on offense in the first half. It is the first game of the season so that can be somewhat expected. They lacked much movement. Long Beach State was moving without the ball much better than Wisconsin in the first half. Long Beach State would have been leading at the half if they did not start to take some suspect shots...mainly off balance three's.

Wisconsin will be solid this year of course. I would predict they will be in the 15-20 range in the national polls all year. They will be solid defensively and you will rarely get more than one shot on each possession against them. They won't make many unforced turnovers and when you do all those things you will be in any game. That's basically the Badger recipe.