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Michigan State Spartans Picked Fourth in Big Ten

Early national picks are in and MSU is picked to finish No. 4.

Michigan State v Indiana Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Despite the lack of football already and the two months to go before basketball season’s new start date, it is getting to be that time of year again for preseason rankings in basketball! Lindy’s Sports released projections for the Big Ten, Andy Katz released his preseason top-36, and Joe Lunardi has the latest bracketology (well, OK, it is from the last month post-draft withdrawal deadline) projections. Let’s start off first with the Big Ten projections from Lindy’s.

Lindy’s Sports

Lindy’s Sports is a bit cooler on Iowa than other outlets earlier projections as you can see, but most notably for readers of this article, have the Spartans No. 4.

Big Ten Rankings

  1. Wisconsin Badgers
  2. Iowa Hawkeyes
  3. Illinois Fighting Illini
  4. Michigan State Spartans
  5. Ohio State Buckeyes
  6. Rutgers Scarlet Knights
  7. Indiana Hoosiers
  8. Michigan Wolverines
  9. Minnesota Golden Gophers
  10. Purdue Boilermakers
  11. Maryland Terrapins
  12. Penn State Nittany Lions
  13. Northwestern Wildcats
  14. Nebraska Cornhuskers

In addition, Lindy’s projects Wisconsin to make a run to the Elite Eight, Iowa and Illinois to advance to the Sweet 16, MSU and OSU to make the second round, and Indiana and Rutgers to lose in the first round. Seven teams is a large group, but noticeably smaller than the total that would have likely made the tournament last season when as many as 10 schools were expected prior to cancellation.

Lindy’s Sports also makes predictions for who will qualify for the All-Big Ten teams, and Michigan State is well represented in numbers.

First Team All-Conference

  • Ayo Dosunmu (Illinois)
  • Marcus Carr (Minnesota)
  • Trayce Jackson-Davis (Indiana)
  • Nate Reuvers (Wisconsin)
  • Luka Garza (Iowa)

Second Team All-Conference

  • Joe Wieskamp (Iowa)
  • Rocket Watts (Michigan State)
  • Trevion Williams (Purdue)
  • Aaron Henry (Michigan State)
  • Kofi Cockburn (Illinois)

Third Team All-Conference

  • Ron Harper Jr. (Rutgers)
  • D’Mitrik Trice (Wisconsin)
  • E.J. Liddell (Ohio State)
  • Seth Towns (Ohio State)
  • Joey Hauser (Michigan State)

Katz Top 36

The Big Ten is well represented in the rankings. As for competition in league play it will come as no surprise it will be stiff as the Big Ten has the most of any conference in both the top-five and top-10 with Illinois No. 4, Iowa No. 5, and Wisconsin No. 6. After that is our own Michigan State at No. 12, followed by Rutgers No. 13, Michigan No. 17, Indiana No. 18, and Purdue No. 32, with Ohio State receiving “Under Consideration” mention.

It should come as no surprise the Big Ten, while expected to be down some in talent compared to last year, is still a murderer’s row of stiff competition ahead this season. The conference is still stacked with depth and a bench of quality coaching staffs. Having said all of that, even after losing Cassius Winston and Xavier Tillman, putting on my homer glasses I am not sure I would have a good argument for or against ranking MSU behind Tennessee at No. 10, though.

Lunardi Post-Draft Withdrawal Deadline Brackets

Again, nobody reading this is unaware of the fact bracket projections are fairly useless this far out in terms of accurate predictions for the big dance. They are, however, a useful metric for gauging preseason expectations.


Iowa-2 seed


Wisconsin-2 seed
Purdue-8 seed


Michigan State-3 seed
Illinois-4 seed
Indiana-7 seed


Ohio State-4 seed
Rutgers-6 seed
Michigan-7 seed

Let me all call your attention to that last region where Rutgers is a higher seed than Juwan Howard’s Wolverines squad. You hate to see it, folks. College basketball starts November 25!