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The Definitive, Indisputable, Totally Factual Player Rankings: Ohio State Edition

Find out how Michigan State players performances against Ohio State compare to rides you can build in the original Roller Coaster Tycoon

NCAA Basketball: Michigan State at Ohio State Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

For all of 2017, Mike Castellani AKA SpartyInTheUSA is going to let you dive into his brain and see the odd yet spot on player rankings of your Michigan State Spartans. Buckle up, Spartans.

Miles Bridges – This was the Miles Bridges we all were hoping to see when he committed to Michigan State a little over a year ago. It finally feels as though he is getting past the point of experiencing the growing pains that come from the jump to college from high school, and he looks to be fully recovered from the early season injury. Miles signature was all over this game, especially on the offensive end where his 4 – 5 3 point shooting was badly needed. Towards the end of the first half, Miles blocked an Ohio State shot at the rim and then grabbed an offensive rebound on the next possession that led to a Langford 3 to swing momentum back Michigan State’s way and keep us within striking distance (3 points) at the half. It was nice to see an improved sense of urgency from Miles, as he will be a key offensive option as we get into the thick of the big ten schedule. He was less hesitant with the ball in the second half, and getting to the rim in ways that only he can. I thought he was the victim of some bad calls (cough charging cough), but he kept his cool and kept MSU in this game against a hungry and talented Ohio state team. If MSU is going to make another late run in March, MSU needs Miles Bridges to be playing the basketball he did against the Buckeyes. If you’re building a successful park in Roller Coaster Tycoon, you need to have a Shuttle Loop or two Roller Coaster throughout your park. The ride is short, allowing plenty of guests on in an hour, and it’s exciting. It also is small and compact, and the versatility of the Shuttle Loop is unlike any other ride seen in the first installment of the popular Hasbro game. You can extend the track and make it a little longer or you can crank up the launch speed and give the guests a more exciting ride. Miles Bridges is your Shuttle Loop, the key cog in your park that drives the majority of your other business due to its’ versatility and excitement.

Tum Tum – I liked Tum’s game today, I thought he was exactly what we needed and have kind of come to expect from him. It was clear early on that Izzo wanted to push the pace against this team, and Tum was the driving force behind that. Ohio State started putting men on Tum in the full court after the first TV timeout, in what I assume was an attempt to slow down the Spartan fast break. Although this was effective, there were still a few instances where Tum was able to break away for a quick run out that would often lead to a transition jump shot or get the defense immediately off balance and struggling to catch up to our ball movement. Tum’s main contribution today was his ball handling, as he finished with 8 assists and only 2 late turnovers. It wasn’t the sexiest or most flashy performance today, but it was exactly what this MSU team needed with Winston struggling. Tum’s game today reminded me a lot of the Information Kiosk in Roller Coaster Tycoon. Strategically located at the front and middle of the park, the Information Kiosk provides park maps to customers who are struggling to find the park exit or a specific ride as well as umbrellas. Whereas it won’t give you the profits you need to build new rides, it is a must to have in your park as it assists your guests in finding key attractions.

Tum Tum was dishing out assists like park maps

Eron Harris – This was a head scratcher for me. Early on Harris was aggressive and Izzo was calling plays to get him open shots. Harris drew a foul and made a jumper in the first 3 possessions down the court. Not long after that, Izzo put Eron on the bench and he would only see 13 minutes the entirety of the game. Izzo has his reasons for the low minutes this game I’m sure, just as I’m sure he expects more from his senior. Eron’s offense would have been nice to have to space the floor, but we didn’t get much chance to see it. In one of the first levels of Roller Coaster Tycoon, you take over a park that already has a huge, curvy roller coaster built called Dynamite Blaster. The problem is, the ride is ridiculously priced and nobody really rides it until you figure that out and lower the price. Once the price is lowered to a more average price, the customers lose their minds and begin lining up in droves to ride it. Eron has a lot of potential and more talent than I would know what to do with, but there is a flaw or two that is holding him back from becoming a reliable night in night out guy.

Cassius Winston – After losing his starting spot to Nairn, Cassius didn’t see the floor until after the first TV timeout and was absent from the first group of mass substitution Izzo made. After displaying an ability to move the ball and adjust quickly to the college game, Winston looked like he regressed a lot against Ohio State. His shot selection included a few bad forces, and he looked out of place and bothered by the size of Ohio State’s guards. As a freshman you expect to see games like this every once in a while, and a subpar game against a big ten team on the road is not exactly reason to panic just yet. Occasionally in Roller Coaster Tycoon, despite carrying a park map, a character will get lost and wander around semi aimlessly until you either move them to the park exit manually, or until they find their way out. When that would happen, you would get this message, which I think summed up Winston’s performance pretty well.

Cassius looked lost against Ohio State

Nick Ward – Nick Ward’s homecoming was a little less exciting than what he was looking for, I’m sure. I don’t think he had any good scoring chances until about 12 minutes left in the first half (I have 12:43 written down). I’d say it’s accurate to say he struggled with the size and versatility of Ohio State’s bigs such as Loving and Thompson, but the offense was clicking early, 6 for 6 to start the game, and you’d think Nick Ward would thrive when our jump shots were falling and the defenders to close out on our shooters. Nick finished with a respectable 9 points, but his foul issues cost him some playing time. Going forward, Nick has to be more consistent which is the exact same story as the Log Flume. The Log Flume is a great ride, but it’s also water based. When you’re in a sunny and warm part of the year, the Log Flume will be one of your main profit centers. However, when it’s winter or raining, people avoid it. Going forward, a summer Log Flume version of Nick Ward will win us a lot of big ten games.

Matt McQuaid – Matt looked a little out of place in this one. Izzo opted to play him over Harris a lot, but McQuaid didn’t look up to task. His 5 points, 0 rebounds and 1 assist in 22 minutes is not exactly an eye opening stat line, and he looked like he was a step behind. There were times I though Tum did a great job of pushing the pace, collapsing the defense, and getting the ball out to the perimeter. There were a few times where the ball would come to an open McQuaid who would either pump fake or hesitate which allowed the defense to catch up. We don’t have a Bryn Forbes this year obviously, but McQuaid is probably our next best option to be a pure catch and shoot guard. One of the attractions you can actually build in Roller Coaster Tycoon is a movie theatre. If you’re asking me why anyone would pay admission to an amusement park and watch a movie, I can’t answer that. I just know that I always built one when there was a lull in the game, and the theatre always felt out of place jammed in there next to Roller Coasters and Go Kart type attractions. Unfortunately, Matt’s game against Ohio State compares to the movie theatre in an amusement park type situation.

Josh Langford – This was a great chance to be a huge game for Josh Langford, but things got a little away from him in the second half. He hit a 3 to open the scoring for either team, and hit a 3 to end the first half in what looked like it could be a great shooting day, but he failed to register any second half points as MSU struggled to find options on offense. On the Katie’s Dreamland level of Roller Coaster Tycoon, you are gifted a great collection of pre-built Roller Coasters to start your park. However every year, one of them crashes. It’s either the Storm or Batflyer, one of them explodes with causes your park rating to understandably plummet. In the first part it’s great; in the second half it crashes and burns. Josh Langford’s game against Ohio State compares to the roller coasters in Katie’s Dreamland. Great first half, not a great second half.

Tom Izzo – It always feels weird to criticize or offer my opinion on anything Tom Izzo does, since he is responsible for the majority of banners that hang in the Breslin rafters and my contributions to the basketball team are limited to about a total of $500 spent on red snow cones during my Izzone days. That being said, Tom’s substitution patterns and decisions to go away from Eron Harris while playing Matt McQuaid down the stretch were just plain bizarre. I would have liked to see Izzo ride the first unit a little more, since they were responsible for MSU’s hot shooting start, and I would have liked to see more plays for Langford in the second half. MSU’s next game is Saturday at Indiana, so let’s hope Izzo figures things out by then. In a similar sense, the boat hire ride on Roller Coaster Tycoon was flat out confusing. It’s supposed to be like a real life paddle-boats, but guests can almost never make it back to the dock and the game often glitches and the guests that do make it back get stuck on the tracks for eternity. Tom Izzo’s decisions during the Ohio State game are like the boat hire, confusing.