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MSU basketball: 5 things we want to see this Big Ten Tournament

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One more weekend of basketball before it really, really counts

NCAA Basketball: North Florida at Michigan State Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Gang, it’s (apparently) that time of year again.

It’s conference tournament time for the Big Ten, and that means it’s MSU’s favorite time of the season.

This is the final dress rehearsal before MSU chases another Final Four later this month and, of course, there are still a few things we want to see with this team. Other than a championship, that is. And no injuries, of course.

Have any others you want to see? Dish it out in the comments.

Miles Bridges bouncing back quick

The last game of the regular season probably won’t make the Miles Bridges highlight film. During his 3-of-15 performance against Wisconsin, you couldn’t help to think that maybe all those allegations surrounding his family were throwing his mental game off.

Are we worried about Bridges’ game? Certainly not — we just want him to prove everyone last game was a hiccup and that he’s ready to take on the world this month. That starts at the Big Apple AKA Big Ten Country (yes, I’m laughing typing that).

NCAA Basketball: Michigan State at Northwestern Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Joshua Langford extending his hot hand

Langford was impressive two games ago against Illinois, scoring 16 points on 5-of-11 shooting (3-of-4 from 3-point range). Last game against Wisconsin he was OK, taking just three shots en route to five points.

However, it’s hard to not hope/think/get excited that Langford is getting back to his vintage self. He had a bit of a bumpy stretch before the Illinois game, shooting 35 percent in the six games prior.

Obviously the team has fared well despite Langford not being a drop-dead shooter in that stretch. It’s just when he gets going too, he can help make this team unbeatable.

A Rematch vs. Michigan

The team needs this. The fans also need it.

The team needs this for a few reasons. First, Michigan will be a good test for the Spartans as they’ll get experience playing a solid outside shooting team. And it’s not every day you get to face a versatile big like Mo Wagner (no matter how annoying he is) right before heading into the NCAA Tournament. It’s also a quick turnaround game against a well-coached team and, as good as MSU is, they’re still young and don’t have a ton of collective tournament experience.

The fans need this for obvious reasons. I can’t take another week of that fan base acting like they suddenly care what happens on a basketball court.

NCAA Basketball: Purdue at Michigan State Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

A Purdue loss in any way

Honestly, I don’t care who it’s against. I have no shame in saying that.

MSU playing their opening NCAA games in Detroit sounds a whole lot better than spending that weekend in Wichita or Charlotte or wherever that’s not Detroit. A Purdue loss can only help those odds of playing there.

Right now ESPN’s Bracketology has Purdue and MSU playing in Detroit with Xavier, that third potential Detroit team, playing in Pittsburgh. CBS Sports has MSU and Xavier in Detroit with Purdue in Nashville. USA Today has Purdue and Xavier in Detroit while MSU plays in Nashville.

What I’m trying to show is that it’s a three horse race for two spots in Detroit. Purdue dropping a game this weekend only helps that cause.

Limited turnover damage

This one is really wishful thinking as MSU’s turnover ratio is -3.3 per game. That’s pretty bad. Like, “331st in the nation” bad.

The team doesn’t force a lot of turnovers and, even more obvious, they’ve had a bit of a turnover problem all season on offense. I’m not hoping for a flawless fix -- I’m just hoping they can mitigate that damage.

Asking for a turnover problem to be corrected this late in the season reminds me of the time I desperately prayed and crammed for a ISS 210 exam. I just hope MSU can get better than a D this weekend like I did.

Poll

How far does MSU make it in the Big Ten Tournament?

This poll is closed

  • 4%
    First round loss
    (22 votes)
  • 13%
    Semifinal loss
    (61 votes)
  • 13%
    Finals loss
    (60 votes)
  • 67%
    WINNING THE WHOLE THING, BABY
    (299 votes)
442 votes total Vote Now