The Michigan State men’s basketball team has started the 2021-2022 season with a 10-2 overall record, including a 2-0 mark in Big Ten play. The Spartans have won five games in a row, and have been victorious in 10 of the last 11 games. MSU is starting to look like a true contender in the Big Ten Conference this season, and a big reason for the team’s early success is due to Northeastern transfer point guard Tyson Walker.
Walker got off to a bit of a slow start with the Spartans. He would hesitate to take shots and didn’t look completely comfortable as he adjusted to playing for a traditional basketball powerhouse program in the Big Ten. However, it has been evident how much Walker has grown over the past few games, and he looks to be playing much more confidently. Walker has played with poise and has elevated his game to the next level. He is doing exactly what he needs to be doing for the Spartans to win games.
Over the past four contests, Walker is averaging 11.5 points (scoring in double-figures in each of those games), seven assists, two rebounds and two steals per game. He also has only turned the ball over a total of six times in those four games (1.5 turnovers per game), after struggling with turnovers to begin the season. In fact, during Michigan State’s current five-game winning-streak, Walker has recorded 38 total assists (7.6 per game) versus 12 total turnovers (2.4 per game), which is an outstanding assist to turnover ratio of 3.17 during that span.
Walker is also shooting well from the the field over the past four games, especially from three-point range. Overall, he is converting at about a 46 percent clip from the floor, and has made six of his 11 shots from deep range (about 55 percent) during that span.
On the season overall, Walker is averaging 7.3 points, 5.5. assists (third in the Big Ten), 1.5 rebounds, 1.4 steals and 2.4 turnovers per game. He has made 42.7 percent of his shoots from the floor, and while the volume is fairly low, has converted at at an incredible clip of 61.1 percent from three-point range (11-for-18).
If Walker keeps up with his current pace of play, expect his numbers on the campaign as a whole to increase astronomically (although, he likely can’t possibly keep up with his extremely hot-shooting from behind the arc, but should be solid from deep all season long). If Walker’s game continues to ascend, don’t be surprised if the point guard earns All-Big Ten accolades by the end of the year.
While he isn’t a team captain, and is still just 12 games into his Michigan State tenure, Walker is quickly becoming a leader for the team as well. Walker was able to calm down his head coach, Tom Izzo, after Izzo was called for a technical foul in the last game against Oakland. Junior forward, and team captain, Malik Hall called Walker the team’s “QB1” after the Spartans’ victory over the Golden Grizzlies.
Maybe there is just something about transfer players with the last name Walker making an incredible impact at Michigan State.
Michigan State, currently ranked No. 11 in the Associated Press poll, returns to action on Wednesday, Dec. 29 at the Breslin Center against High Point. The Spartans take on the Panthers at 3 p.m. Eastern Time and the game will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.