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That Michigan State game just got a little bit tougher

That November 12th game against Michigan State in the United Center got a little more difficult today when Spartan guard Gary Harris announced his return to college for a sophomore season. The Big Ten Freshman of the Year, formerly a UK target, ranked second in scoring for Tom Izzo’s club last season and was a finalist for the Wayman Tisdale Award, given to the nation’s top freshman. He will provide experience, great defense and hot shooting at two-guard across from Aaron Harrison in the early season matchup.

Michigan State big man Adriean Payne is still deciding on his basketball future. If he returns, Michigan State will likely be No. 2 in the preseason polls, which would put the top two teams in the country against each other in the Champions Classic.

Beat The Spartans.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

46 Comments for That Michigan State game just got a little bit tougher

  1. WildcatByTheGraceOfGOD
    4:03 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Well if this won’t be a TRUE test for our young guns I don’t know what is. This will be the ultimate wake-up call and welcome to the big leagues all wrapped into one tight mean green package.

    Man I’m glad the new season is underway now!!

  2. Brad in Portland
    4:03 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Bring. It.

  3. KBF
    4:04 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    I love it! We will destroy #2 Michigan State and top 5 Louisville.

  4. bosshog
    4:10 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Good for them….hope they are ready to bring it for forty minutes full steam ahead because we will have about 10 players at that level. So I

  5. Russdiculous
    4:10 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    All these dudes are overrated!

  6. Class of 2014
    4:13 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    #1 Recruit in 2014 Jahlil Okafor scheduling in-home visits for next week, Kentucky not included. Tyus Jones + Jahlil Okafor = package deal.

  7. Mike
    4:15 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Stay…go…who cares? It’s inconsequential. No one can beat us with our depth. One guy not playing defense or flat out getting beat? We can always slide over a better player. No team can match up with us next year.

  8. han
    4:16 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Michigan is returning a lot from ship runner up. They could be a lot of trouble next year too

  9. Rei
    4:17 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Burke and Hardaway are gone. Michigan won’t be any good.

  10. Axe Cop
    4:17 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    The more the merrier. Tough games will only pay dividends later in the year.

  11. fb>bb
    4:18 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    We will have a tough enough schedule next year assuming Baylor in Dallas counts as the SEC/Big12 game. If it doesn’t count you know they will match us up with Kansas in addition to playing top 5 teams UofL, at UNC, Mich. St, at Florida, Florida, Florida-SEC. Providence isn’t bad either.

    It will be the end of January before this team can handle a schedule like that.

  12. SexnNursinHomes
    4:19 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Who is their point guard? If they don’t have a good point guard, it doesn’t matter.

  13. Brian
    4:26 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    So why does my post about guys returning until their junior year get removed. Really????? It would be obvious that it would be crazy not to go this year because most of our team will be going to next year’s draft. A freshman returning for next year would almost be a fool to try the draft next year. They would almost have to wait until their Junior season. WTF? KSR. Yall let Friggin U of smell fans on here to Effin troll, but….never mind… lets see if this gets posted!!!!!

  14. Axe Cop
    4:26 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    And speaking of next year’s squad, how will they top last year’s BB Madness? Last year’s was so epic I don’t see how they will top that and give next year’s team something proportional to their talent and expectations.

  15. schedule
    4:27 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Hey guys! I need help. When does the 2013-2014 men’s basketball schedule come out?

  16. Ukbball4eva
    4:27 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Does anyone know when tix go on sale? And how u get 2 sit in the section designated 4 UK fans???

  17. David from Bowling Green
    4:28 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    I thought everyone was saying we are going 40-0 next season? One guy returns to MI State and all confidence is gone? What happened?

  18. B-man
    4:30 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Mich St, UNC and Louisville…pretty tough nonconference schedule next year. Even with the team we have next year, I don’t think we’ll blow out teams like many (I’m looking at you Matt Jones) think. The Mich St game will most likely be the toughest game on our schedule all year AND it will most likely be one of the first 5 games we play. That will be a very early and tough test for a team without a significant amount of time playing together.

  19. SCCat
    4:34 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    i will be at this game representing Frankfort KY like a true wild man. where is the Chicago equivalent to Jack Dempsey’s?

  20. Big Blue Swagger
    4:36 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Between Gary Harris (2 guard) and Kieth Appling (returning PG) and Adriene Payne, our newbies will have their hands full. I will never undersell Tom Izzo– he’s a great coach– at both X&Os, motivation, and in game adjustments. His teams always compete. It will be an ugly introduction into college basketball but I’m confident we will beat them! GBB

  21. Jacob Brooks
    4:39 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Anyone else noticed we get the toughest team in the classic each year. First year we played Kansas (national runner up) while Duke got an average MSU team. This year we got Duke who was #1 most of the year so Duke got the worst UK team in 4 or 5 years and next year we get the probable preseason #2.

  22. SexnNursinHomes
    4:43 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    20- good. Thanks for posting who their pg was. Appling a pretty decent point. I thought he was a senior this year. I still think we win by 10. But they will be pretty tight. Considering that Izzo only wins 16% of the time when he is in the final four.

  23. Big Blue Swagger
    4:44 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Basketball schedule is generally released in mid-August.
    Tickets to sit with other UK fans are given out first to K-Club donors and usually send out requests for these tickets in Aug/Sept. last couple years, face value was around $90/ticket.

  24. DH
    4:46 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    21) If that’s the case, let ’em keep doing it! I’d MUCH rather play the best team available. That’s how you measure yourself and get better.

  25. Big Blue Swagger
    4:47 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Sexn-- I think Appling was a Jr. but not 100% certain…. Would be nice if he graduated and we were playing an inexperienced PG 🙂

  26. schedule
    4:47 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Thanks 23!

  27. Hazard Kidd-Katt
    4:48 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

  28. Cking9698
    4:51 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Anybody who thinks 40-0 is happening is an idiot.
    This squad will lose to Mich State, & will likely lose at UNC. Panic will ensue, but come march UK will be the second coming of UNLV -90.

  29. SexnNursinHomes
    4:53 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    25- totally agree……

  30. Catlanta
    5:01 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Because of how early in the season this one is, I think this will be the hardest game we play all year.

    Whether or not the team can go 40-0 might really come down to this one.

  31. Cat Fan in Georgia
    5:15 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    28 – I agree. They MIGHT go 40-0 but anyone who sets that as a goal has totally lost sight of what the REAL goal is. You think Louisville fans/players/coaches have lost any sleep over those games that they lost? You think UConn women have lost any sleep over those three losses to Notre Dame? Nope.

  32. brain
    5:41 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Gotta beat the best to be the best. Bring it on.

  33. Jacob Brooks
    5:42 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    28) So your positive we lose to Michigan state and think we most likely lose to UNC? Sure we might lose both but you don’t evem know what Payne is doing yet and he’s s huge key to their success next year.

    I’d say both are coin flips at worst and I’d be shocked if we didn’t at least go 1-1

    Who does UNC have that’s scaring you so bad. McAdoo? We’ll be better than them at 4 of the 5 starting spots. The big incoming recruit is Kennedy Meeks who would be our 4th best option at Center.

  34. derp
    5:44 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    28 and 31… you too are fuggin morons.

  35. bobert
    5:45 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    We gonna make Gary Harris eat they feet.

  36. derp
    5:45 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    28… Anyone who thinks this team doesn’t have a great chance at going 40-0, especially with Wiggins, is an idiot.

  37. Cat Fan in Georgia
    5:52 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    34 – What’s moronic about saying that the REAL goal, the only goal that means anything, is cutting down the nets in Dallas. I’s like to see them go 40-0 as much as anyone, but if they lose a game along the way (or even if they lose three or four), who cares at the end of the day?

  38. Bigbluenationbigredmachine
    5:58 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    So does mean it’ll be #1 vs #2 to start the season off?

  39. It's ok
    6:34 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    6) we’ve already got a center for 2014, and jones is no longer top ranked pg. I’d take Towns and Mudiaye over okafor and jones. Ha It’d be cool to get them all though 🙂

  40. Boogie
    6:41 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    @6 Tyus Jones is softer than Ryan Harrow and has half of Harrow’s skill set. Karl Towns is equally as good as Okafor, but Towns has a better attitude. But Gary Harris is a hell of a player, although I saw him struggle trying to score on long arms (aaron harrison & Willie at the rim). Michigan St is a tournament team I don’t see them beating us in the early season.

  41. Mike
    6:42 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Am I the only 1 who thinks James Young is better than Aaron Harrison? I think if we get Wiggins, Aaron Harrison will probably be the 1st sub off the bench for either guard spot, I assume he’ll probably be our backup point guard whether he starts or not. But anyway, I’m guessing Gary Harris will be seeing plenty of James Young too when we play them. Of course if we don’t get Wiggins then Young may be getting most of his minutes at the 3 spot.

  42. Cking9698
    6:43 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Derp your an idiot….why don’t you put your money where your mouth is big boy? I don’t care if we had Anthony Davis joining next year…our beloved cats will not go undefeated. This team hasn’t even played yet…and yet we anoint them as 2014 champs. This will be a tough schedule, and we will take our lumps.

    Unc is not an easy place to win in. Regardless of who they have. It will be a challenge.

    Michigan state will be ready to whip our asses at the united center. If we win that I would be flat out shocked. I plan on being there.

    Stop with the 40-0 garbage….enjoy this team. They won’t be perfect, but in the end they will be as strong as anyone. All these idiots thinking we will be unstoppable out of the gate, are in for a major letdown.

  43. Boogie
    6:50 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Aaron Harrison is a flat out superstar. Just because his hoopmixtape isn’t exciting as some, he has the ability to do any move on the basketball floor at any time. Plus he is lights out from the arc. Kid can really play. James young isn’t quite there yet but he will develop and contribute greatly to a championship run

  44. fb>bb
    8:51 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    In college basketball defenses will pack it in and dare you to beat them from the outside. I don’t care how much talent you have, you have to be able to hit from outside and hit free throws.

  45. Reality Check
    8:54 pm April 18, 2013 Permalink

    Even the Fab 5 lost 9 games. 40-0 is never gonna happen. Wake up fools.

  46. Jeff Garlin
    9:38 am April 19, 2013 Permalink

    45. This team is better than Fab 5 and the 2012 team only lost two! 40-0 can easily happen! There’s your. “reality check” for the day!