(Eds: With AP Photos.) By LARRY LAGE AP Sports Writer Michigan State needs freshman Denzel Valentine to turn his potential into production.
''I'm expecting big things out of him,'' Spartans coach Tom Izzo said.
The versatile guard likely will play an expanded role when the 12th-ranked Spartans (18-4, 7-2 Big Ten) host No. 18 Minnesota (18-4, 5-4) on Wednesday night.
''He's not a freshman anymore,'' Izzo said. ''One way or another, we're going to need him.''
Backup point guard Travis Trice wasn't in uniform during Monday's practice while starting shooting guard Gary Harris participated in some drills with his teammates. Trice and Harris were both knocked out of last week's win against Illinois. Harris had back spasms. Trice had a head injury and needs to pass a concussion test to play.
Izzo said he doubts Trice will be in the lineup against the Golden Gophers and said Harris probably will be able to play.
''If those two guys couldn't play, we are down to the nitty gritty...