2005 Michigan State Spartans Basketball Preview
2005 Michigan State Spartans Team Preview
Who is the only active coach with four Final Four appearance in seven years and leads all active basketball coaches in winning percentage? It’s Spartan’s head honcho Tom Izzo who after ten years at Michigan sports a 233-97 record. Izzo seems to be a total coach-- great motivator, fine assessor of talent, and an all around positive force. Last season the Spartans led the Big Ten in scoring, field goal and free throw percentage, and rebounding margin and were second in assists. The Spartans are a team that always seems to know exactly where the ball is or should be.
Despite losing three key team members Michigan still looks formidable. One reason is certainly guard Maurice Ager who is able to score from just about anywhere. Ager knocked in an average of 14.1 points each game and handled 3.9 rebounds. Ager has athleticism, moves, and smarts-- a dynamic presence that is almost impossible to stop.
Junior guard Shannon Brown is a fine compliment to teammate Ager. At 6’ 4” the speedy Brown has no problem cutting across defenses to find the open hole, finding the lane, and getting above the rim to slam in dunks. he also possesses a sweet free throw motion that helps him hit almost 85% from the line.
The Spartans are also strong where many teams are not-- at center. Paul Davis, who measures 6’ 11”, seems ready to be even better than last year’s 12.3 PPG and 8.0 RPG. As Davis enters his senior year critics and prognosticators are both looking for him to become a dominant force under the boards.
The power forward position is the main concern for this team. Can senior Matt Trannon be the one to provide inside defense and rebounding? Or will it be first-year player Marquise Gray who was redshirted with an injury last year? This team will have no problem pumping in points, that’s a given. It has a good chance of dominating its conference. But when it comes to the Tournament will it be able to hold-off and contain powerhouses such as Duke or Connecticut?
For more info on the 2005 Spartans check out the official Michigan State athletic site.