Where: Breslin Center, East Lansing, MI
When: 6:30 pm (ET), November 18, 2019
TV/Radio: BTN/Spartan Sports Network radio
Charleston Southern 1-3 : #282 (Kenpom)
1 - Shuller (6’2” so), Anderson (6’0” so)
2 - Buskey (6’1” jr), Battle (6’3” fr)
3 - Fleming (6’4” jr), Price (6’3” jr)
4 - Jones (6’6” jr), Porter (6’8” fr)
5 - LeXander (6’8” so), Bowser (6’9” so)
This team isn’t great - they don’t shoot it well, they turn it over a fair amount, and they don’t get to the ft line. They do crash the glass (probably not a great call given their deficiencies), they don’t get their shots blocked that often (thus far in the season), and they do force a fair number of turnovers. Their two back-up guards (Anderson and Battle) are their most efficient players (at 125.8 and 111 Ortgs respectively)
All name team Phlandrous Fleming (using 27% of possessions), who is surely a wizard out of Harry Potter, Dontrell Shuler (using a staggering 35% of possessions), and Ty Jones (24% of possessions), are the high usage guys, while additional all-name entrants Deontae Buskey and Duncan LeXander as low-usage low-efficency starters.
This game should be a walk in the park, for better or worse. Big keys will be the two freshman - Watts and Hall - continued improvement, and continued shot-making will be vital from those two as we head towards Maui next week. I doubt that Izzo pulls the trigger just yet, but we may begin trending towards Malik Hall starting at some point down the line. Regardless of Joey Hauser’s impending hearing before the NCAA review board (today), a non-Hauser big rotation of Hall and Tillman as starters (with Bingham jr and Kithier off the bench) feels like the best configuration of talent and solidness.
Kithier has hit 1-2 three-pointers on the year, Tillman has hit 1-7 (a number that should, and likely will, start trending towards +30% in the near future), and Bingham jr is 0-4. All 4 of the bigs will likely end up as +30% 3pt shooters on the season, and the quicker those numbers sort themselves out the quicker this team moves from being solid and tough, to full-on balanced and scary.
The Seton Hall game showed a ton: Brown and Henry are ready to share the spot-light defensively as stoppers with Watts as a third guy in that group, Watts and Tillman were generally poor for most of that game and yet each came up with HUGE moments down the stretch (‘mentality monsters’ in the words of Jurgen Klopp), and Cassius Winston served up another heavy dose of “My-GOD we are so lucky to have this kid.”
Outside of the freshmen duo continuing to produce and improving, it would be super if Ahrens and Loyer could find/keep-finding a bit of confidence on the court as both reserves will continue to be relied on for solid replacement-level minutes at the least.
MSU 90 Charleston Southern 60