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Michigan State Basketball: Austin Thornton reportedly returning to be video coordinator

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NCAA Basketball Tournament - St Louis v Michigan State Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Former Michigan State Spartans men’s basketball player Austin Thornton is reportedly being tapped as the new video coordinator for the program. WLNS reporter Audrey Dahlgren first reported the news, stating that she privately confirmed it with her own sources. Thornton replaces former video coordinator Drew Denisco who served in that role for the past six seasons. Denisco left last month for an assistant coaching position with the Eastern Michigan Eagles.

Thornton played four seasons at Michigan State from 2008-2012, rising from walk-on to co-captain during his time in East Lansing. The native of Sand Lake, Michigan, was listed in his playing days as 6-foot-5 and 210 pounds.

Thornton played in 131 total games for the Spartans and got the start at guard in 22 of them. He averaged 11.3 minutes per game over his career and 2.5 points. His senior season was the highlight as he started in 16 of 37 total games, averaged 21.8 minutes, 5.2 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 0.3 spg, and shot 47.7 percent from three-point range on an average 1.8 attempts per game. Thornton was co-captain his senior season alongside Draymond Green.

The Spartans made two Final Four appearances and another Sweet 16 appearance during his four seasons with the team, highlighted by the national title game appearance in Detroit in 2009. The team also won the 2009, 2010, and 2012 Big Ten regular season championships, along with the 2012 Big Ten Tournament title.

Thornton was a four-year starter in high school at Cedar Springs. He helped the Red Hawks win three conference titles and four district championships in addition to a regional title. He was an all-state player his senior season in 2007.

Thornton most recently worked as the boy’s varsity basketball head coach at Sparta High School, assuming that role in October 2020.