April 28th, 2013 at 5:05 PM ^

With Payne back next year, it will be up to Appling and Dawson whether they are national championship contenders or not. If those two play like they did this year, they are probably sweet sixteen bound. 

Blue boy johnson

April 28th, 2013 at 5:17 PM ^

If MSU  makes it to the FF next season, it is going to be due in a large part to Gary Harris. Harris battled shoulder issues all season and still was regarded as one of the best frosh in the country. Harris is one of those players, like Trey Burke, who makes the players around him better.

In M's win against the Spartans, Izzo designed a play to get Harris an open shot in the left corner, but Valentine went the wrong way and blew the play up. One frosh playing like a frosh, the other waiting in the corner welcoming the pressure of a game winning shot on the road. As for me, I am glad Valentine went the wrong way and cut Appling's drive off, because I wanted no part of Gary Harris with an open look with the game on the line.


April 28th, 2013 at 5:21 PM ^

I think we will be in the top 5 to start the season.  That's where we were last season and we return 3/5 starters from a NT run where last year we were coming off of a loss in the first round.

Perkis-Size Me

April 28th, 2013 at 5:57 PM ^

Its possible, but I'm not so sure. I'd bet we'll start somewhere between 5-10, or at the very worst, 10-15. This is just my opinion, but I think to start the season, the polls will weigh Burke's departure as a lot harder to overcome than we all think it is. After all, you don't just replace the best player in college basketball.


April 28th, 2013 at 5:26 PM ^

The Gholston curse?  Ever since that asshat twisted Denard's head and punched Lewan, bad things have happened to them.  From losing to us in the last seconds in football, to not making it past the sweet 16 while their rival makes it to the NT game, to their best recruit in Drake Harris flipping to Michigan, to being put in a division with three of CFB's powerhouses.


April 28th, 2013 at 6:58 PM ^

There is still more evidence for the WHC.  That year UM swept MSU in basketball for the first time in...?  They still haven't won in Crisler.  They haven't advanced past the sweet 16.  Michigan is pulling down 5* recruits and Izzo is reaching for 3*'s...Their most hated rival makes the NCAA Final...There may be something to this, Karma is a !?$&@.


April 28th, 2013 at 10:33 PM ^

Sports curses have been part of sports culture since the first leather ball was inflated.
You might remember the curse of Bobby Layne or the curse of the little brother. They involve a team or individual being punished by the sports gods for "slights or misdeeds real or imagined". I'd guess that the wonders hall incident qualifies.


April 28th, 2013 at 5:55 PM ^

Payne is a very talented player, MSU will be good and will desrve to be ranked top 3 and be the favorite in the B1G.  3 McD's All Americans and a 5 star in their starting lineup is formidable.

Think we'll be a top 12 team to start and could improve on that as the season goes.  Like our lineup too, not worried, the games are won on the court not in the polls.  Would not surprise me to see both MSU and Michigan in the Final Four next season.

Kentucky has to be #1, the class they are bringing in is hard to believe, if they get Wiggins, it will be 7 McD's AA's in one class and I think 7 of the top 13 players, that's just silly, the Fab 5 had 4 of the top 12 I believe.


April 28th, 2013 at 6:33 PM ^

I give it 3 years before this year's Kentucky class has some sort of NCAA violation. There is no way I can see a class being this good, even with how good Calipari is at getting people to the NBA. Based on Rivals rankings, and assuming they get Wiggins, Marcus Lee (20th best in the nation) and James Young (11th best) will be coming off the bench.


April 28th, 2013 at 7:01 PM ^

and I'm going to get negged to hell for this but a team that we went 1-1 against (1 pt win at home, 23 pt loss on the road) which is returning 4 of 5 starters doesn't concern all of you? After we lost Trey Burke too? When did we all become MSU football fans? MSU is going to be damn good this year


April 28th, 2013 at 7:43 PM ^

Well, they do "concern" me in the sense that I certainly think they can win the Big Ten title.  But I think you're reading too much into a couple of games.  Actually, you seem to be reading entirely into the first game and not so much into the second.  It sounds like you are writing off the game in Crisler as a fluke and assuming the game in EL told the true story, when every other datapoint from the season suggests otherwise.

I agree that we played a horrible game in East Lansing.  I think we didn't match up well with them in general and they caught us at a terrible time to boot, right after the Wisconsin disaster.  But we went on, in the tournament, to beat teams that were better than MSU - Kansas, Florida and Syracuse, and almost Louisville.   The Michigan team that played in the tourney was a lot better than the Michigan team that played in February.  We got better; they pretty much stayed the same.  

Burke and THJ will be tough losses, but we've still got a lot to work with coming back, and an outstanding recruiting class coming in.  I'm pretty confident we'll be good again next year.  Exactly how good, well we'll see.







April 28th, 2013 at 11:59 PM ^

So why should Michigan fans "be concerned"?  The last time Michigan was blown out at MSU and played a close game at Crisler was in 2009-10.  The results of the following season were more than favorable.  And that doesn't even account for the upgrade in talent since those seasons.  Here's the history:


2009-10 season (LOST at MSU 64-48, LOST at home to MSU 56-57)

In 2009-10, Lucas, Roe, Summers and Nix started against us in one of the two games.  All four of them returned in 2010.  That's 4 of 5 starters that returned to play us in 2010-11.

2010-11 season (WON at MSU 61-57, WON at home vs MSU 70-63)


Also, our starting lineups (starting true freshmen in CAPS) were the following:

2007-08: Coleman, Sims, Udoh, Manny, Grady and later it varied with Udoh, Sims and Manny staying starters.

2008-09: Merrit, Manny, STU, Sims, Shepherd and later Lee, Perry, Manny, NOVAK, Gibson

2009-10: Novak, Stu, Manny, Sims, Perry and later Novak, Stu, Manny, Sims, MORRIS

2010-11: SMOT, Morgan (RS freshman), Novak, Morris, HARDAWAY, and later Stu, Morgan (RS freshman), Novak, Morris, HARDAWAY

2011-12: Smot, Morgan (RS sophomore), Novak, BURKE, Hardaway and later Stu, Morgan (RS sophomore), Novak, BURKE, Hardaway

2012-13: Morgan (RS junior), ROBINSON, STAUSKAS, Hardaway, Burke and later MCGARY, ROBINSON, STAUSKAS, Hardaway, Burke


The returning sophomores that started as true freshmen are as follows:

In 2009, Michigan returned Stu Douglas and Zack Novak

In 2010, Michigan returned Darius Morris

In 2011, Michigan returned THJ and Evan Smotrycz

In 2012, Michigan returned Trey Burke.

In 2013, Michigan will return Nik Stauskas, GRIII, and MM.


I can't remember the last time 3 true freshmen starters returned.  Maybe it was the Fab Five's second run?  I think there are many reasons to not be concerned about MSU.  Michigan will respect MSU's team as always.  Michigan though will also be prepared to compete.

Most here agree that MSU will be very good next year.  I think MSU will even be the B1G favorite.  Michigan is not going to concede the title though or even give up much ground, if any at all.  


If we are not concerned about MSU in 2013-14, why is that delusional? 



April 28th, 2013 at 8:40 PM ^

It's good for the strength of the conference and good for the rivalry.  The spoils taste so much sweeter when both teams are at their best and you win.  I'm just so happy to be looking forward to another fun basketbal season.  Thanks to GRIII and Mitch coming back the spartys won't be so quick to start talking about basketball season during halftime on November 2.


April 28th, 2013 at 8:55 PM ^

The point isn't that we don't think MSU will be bad.  They'll be good like this season but unless those 4 players returning get a lot better, they'll be a lot like this year.  I don't get how you can expect them to all of a sudden be a NC contender when the group of guys they have have lost in the first round once, and lost twice in the sweet 16.  Also while we are losing Burke and Hardaway we are adding 2 4 stars and 1 5 star while they aren't adding any 4/5 stars.


April 28th, 2013 at 10:36 PM ^

I don't see how you can fail to mention them as one of the contenders, does that mean they are the favorite? absolutely not, I think that has to go to Kentucky, but they are absolutely one of the teams that can make a deep run in the tourney, you seem to act like the sweet 16 is a joke, and it is far from that. I posted what the other sweet 16 teams lost, and it is not out of the ordinary to think they have the potential to make the deep run. let's look at the other contenders:

Kentucky- All freshmen, can they actually produce a national title?

Michigan- Can we succesfully replace Burke, and to some extent THJ, I don't think we will have an issue with THJ, but I think a lot of us, me included, are way too confident in Walton running the PG. Watching his videos he should have no problems, but who knows once he gets into B1G action and the NCAA.

Louisville- Can they overcome the loss of Siva and Dieng, and will Ware be able to return to pre-injury form?

Arizona- Can they finally live up to the potential they have?

Ohio- How much does Thomas mean to them, they will have a killer defense, but who knows on offense?

Duke- How will losing Curry, Plumlee, and Kelly hurt them, they have a good recruiting class though.

So why do you think it is so out there that MSU is considered on of the few in the national title hunt? Whether we want to admit it Izzo is a hell of a coach, they have at least one lottery pick, a potential first round pick, and experience. Additionally their freshmen and Dawson will get their first summer to improve, which can have a huge impact. Do they have their issues, absolutely, but show me a team that does not. Again, I think if I were doing the odds right now I would have them at 5/6 best chance to win the title, so I don't think it is too crazy to consider their chances. I do hope they only have 4 losses next year though, two in the regular season to us, in the big ten tourney to us, and in the national title to us.

However, it is the tourney, and crazy stuff happens all the time in it. A lot has to do with how you match up with the team, and if a team has a hot or cold night, and that is why it is so fun to watch.

I have to agree with Gordon Berenson, we are exactly like Sparty football fans, we had one really good year, and suddenly we think we are the best, Sparty will be really good next year, and whether we want to admit it their basektball success in the 2000's is something we should strive for. Similarly, our football success is something they will always strive for. The only difference being, we can actually achieve, and outdo, their basketball success. They will never come anywhere near our football success, unless we start measuring success in Pizza Bowl appearences.

I am just glad we are able to talk about basketball being relevant again.


April 28th, 2013 at 9:38 PM ^

That's huge for them, and they should be the favorite in the conference.  But at the same time, you never know how guys will play over seasons, and while Payne is a great athlete I wonder how he'll handle playing inside without Nix.


April 28th, 2013 at 11:06 PM ^

I think the sweet 16 is formidable but to win the NT you need to win 4 more games past that against harder competition and losing Nix will be difficult.  They will have a harder time going big without him unless they want to play Costello who wasn't very impressive last year.  I think we are much more of a NT contender than they are with 3/5 returning off of a team that made it there adding two 4 star recruits and 1 5 star recruit vs. 4/5 returning off a team that lost 4 rounds earlier.


April 28th, 2013 at 11:40 PM ^

This is my last post on this topic. I think Sparty has to be mentioned among 7-8 national title contenders for next year, but so are we. It is preseason, and very early preseason at that. If their team can stop being incredibly streaky, then they have a good chance to make a run, but that can be a lot for them. All this talk right now is a little premature for all the teams because no games have been played and a decent amount of the recruits are probably waking up tomorrow to attend HS. In 10 months we will have a much clearer picture of how good all the teams are and who the pretenders and contenders are, but right now on paper Sparty is a contender, but so are we, and I would much rather be in our shoes.

Just out of curiosity who are your contenders for the title next year?


April 28th, 2013 at 11:18 PM ^

Unlike Spartan football, we have actually made the national title game and I don't think it's impossible for them to win it all but I have heard the overtures the past three years on how this is Sparty's year and they haven't done it with this group of players.