There's not a lot of media day coverage out there in the, um, media yet. They must all be waiting for the morning runs. I'm working mostly off the Twitter feeds of the State News Sports Desk and Lisa Byington. AP article is here. Links to videos/podcasts of Izzo and the players are here if someone wants to watch/listen and fill in any missing tidbits. Bulleted info of the new-ish variety:
- Izzo indicates Alex Gauna and Garrick Sherman are redshirt candidates. I'm little surprised to see Sherman mentioned, but I suppose he could take a year to add some more weight while Green/Roe/Nix/Payne man the front line. Still, I don't see Tom Izzo holding back any workable options on the court in a year in which the goals are as big as they are this year.
- Izzo says he's not sure about Russell Byrd redshirting. Seems likely given that he'll get such a late start on the season (my opinion), but, again, if his 3-point shooting is an asset at some point in conference/NCAA play, you have to seriously consider using him.
- Izzo on Kalin Lucas (in Twitter speak): "doesn't have all speed yet...conditioning pretty good. He won't be same 1st month of season. he has rehabbed better than any player I have had here." Says Lucas' jumpshot is improved due to being slowed down by the injury.
- On Summers: "Durrell had the best summer. He's in the best shape of his life. Runs effortlessly."
- Draymond down 10-12 pounds. Derrick Nix down to 270.
- Austin Thornton's mysterious offseason injury was two broken vertebrae in his back. He missed six weeks but is back now.
- Delvon Roe says his knee feels "150%." Note that this can be a mathematically accurate statement if you define 100% as the level he's now played two full collegiate seasons at.
- Korie Lucious may not play in the opener against Eastern due to possible suspension or injury. Doesn't sound like anything's been decided. Lucious: "I made a mistake and have to deal with the consequences. I'm going to take my punishment because I did the crime. Whatever coach decides, I'll just have to deal with it."
- Dave Mayo states definitively that Lucious won't plan in the opener (I tend to trust the less definitive State News report); he also says Izzo speculated that Lucious could be back on court late next week, which is good news.
- Izzo says the team may need to play some zone defense because of lineups. Quote: "That's foreign territory for me." I'm a bit skeptical here. MSU hasn't played zone defense for any significant amount of time since the 2006-07 season when the team's lack of depth forced Izzo to use it to avoid foul trouble inside. Izzo may be toying with the idea--potentially as a way to compensate for Green playing at the 3 spot--but I think it'll be a pretty big shock if he really decides to utilize a zone look regularly. For one thing, this should be a dominant defensive rebounding team; that advantage would be neutralized to some degree by playing zone.
Finally, Draymond Green:
We'll consider anything less than a national championship a failure
I don't completely agree with that statement (I've been saying that not winning the national title would be a disappointment, but not necessarily a failure). But I love the sentiment.