Gary Harris comes into Michigan State University as the most highly touted freshman in years. Ranked as the number eleven recruit on the ESPN100, expectations are through the roof. With all the hype, a lot is expected of Mr. Harris. The hype aside, can Harris come in right away and contribute?
Like Keith Appling did two years ago, Gary Harris will come in and contribute immediately. As a natural scoring guard, Harris should fit in seamlessly to Izzo’s offense. Harris being 6’4 and 200 pounds, he should continue to get to the rim successfully, as he did in high school. Though Harris isn’t a lights out shooter, he can hit the open three, which should command respect from opposing defenses. Offensively, Harris may need some time to acclimate to the college game. Where Harris really will help the Spartans is defensively.
With long arms and excellent athleticism, Harris is a stellar on ball defender. With Harris and Appling both in the backcourt, opposing guards will have trouble scoring. Having this type of defensive pressure on opposing guards all game, should leave them tired and vulnerable on their own defensive end. This can open up the driving lane for both Appling and Harris. Easy baskets for these two could be key to the Spartan’s offense. Defense wins championships and with Appling and Harris in the backcourt, a Big Ten championship is not out of the question.
Freshmen constantly come into college basketball and make key contributions. Anthony Davis, Harrison Barnes, Cody Zeller, have all came in as freshman and helped their respective teams. Gary Harris will follow in this mold and be a key contributor for the Spartans this upcoming season. With his key contribution the Spartans could be scary, not only to teams in the Big Ten, but to teams across the nation as well.