Originally posted on The B1g Time  |  Last updated 2/23/13

 

1. The Point Guards: Whenever Keith Appling and Aaron Craft match-up you know it will be a battle. They are two of the best on ball defenders in all of college basketball, but Appling won this matchup earlier in the year. In their first meeting Appling finished with 15 points, while holding Craft to just 5 on 1-5 shooting. Both point guards are coming off of poor offensive outings, each scoring just 6 and hoping to rebound from it on Sunday. Can either player respond, or will the stout defense prove too much for either guard? It will be fun to find out.

2. Slow Down Deshaun Thomas: Can anyone slow down Deshaun Thomas? Seriously? Is there anyone who can slow this man? I really am not sure that anyone in the B1G or country can prevent Deshaun from getting his. The least amount of points he has scored this year was 11 against Penn State, but OSU won that one handily. If Deshaun wants to score, he is going to score and then score some more. The Spartans found this out when OSU traveled to East Lansing and Thomas dropped 28 on Tom Izzo and co. Michigan State ended up winning that game by three, so maybe the plan is to let Thomas get his but stop everyone else? Seems much more realistic than trying to slow down Deshaun Thomas.

3. Get the Ball to Harris: I did a piece on Gary Harris earlier in the week, but this man has been the scorer the Spartans desperately needed. He’s been averaging 14.6 over his last 5 games and coming off of a 19 point performance in a loss against Indiana despite popping out his shoulder during the game. Harris will get a lot of minutes and has been given the green light to shoot at will. Michigan State must continue to find open looks for Harris, especially if they hope to leave Columbus with a victory.  

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