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MSU Men’s Basketball earns No. 4 preseason ranking from the Almanac

September 20, 2023
<p>The Spartans celebrate at Nationwide Arena on March 19, 2023, during the second round of the NCAA tournament. Michigan State defeated Marquette 69-60 to advance to the Sweet 16.</p>

The Spartans celebrate at Nationwide Arena on March 19, 2023, during the second round of the NCAA tournament. Michigan State defeated Marquette 69-60 to advance to the Sweet 16.

Michigan State’s men’s basketball team earned a No. 4 preseason ranking from The Almanac ahead of the 2023-2024 season, with a number of players receiving individual recognition.

Graduate student guard Tyson Walker was ranked No. 10 in The Almanac’s Top 100 and was named a preseason Third Team All-American, while senior guard AJ Hoggard, Walker’s right-hand-man in the backcourt, was rated No. 42 in the Top 100

Last season, Walker led all MSU scorers with 14.8 points per game, shooting nearly 46% from the field and 42% from 3-point range. Hoggard’s impact in 2022-2023 came more as a facilitator, recording almost 6 assists per game, yet he showed flashes of scoring ability at times. Both earned All-Big Ten honors en route to a Sweet 16 appearance

Following an up-and-down season in which MSU finished 23-11 and fourth in the Big Ten, the Spartans are in prime position to return to their 26th-straight NCAA tournament with four returning starters and a top-ten incoming freshmen class. 

Graduate student forward Malik Hall and junior guard Jaden Akins also return to MSU’s lineup

Akins, who tested the waters of the NBA draft this past offseason along with Hoggard, will look to make an even larger imprint coming off a season in which he battled foot injuries but still finished with nearly 10 points and 4 rebounds per game. Hall also dealt with injuries in 2022-2023, sidelining him for 11 games during the regular season. A healthy, more consistent Hall would be a massive piece for the Spartans in 2023-2024. 

Suiting up in the green and white as freshmen this season are forwards Xavier Booker and Coen Carr along with guards Jeremy Fears Jr. and Gehrig Normand

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