Tom Izzo has had some elite shooters come through his Michigan State basketball program over the years, but who have been the best?
When you think about Tom Izzo-coached teams, the first thing that usually comes to mind is hard-nosed defensive squads that rebounded at a high level. They usually played a gritty, physical game and worn opponents down with that style of play.
Just because Michigan State teams over the past two-plus decades have been known for physical basketball doesn’t mean that the Spartans haven’t had some sharpshooters.
Sure, Izzo would rather beat teams in the paint than settle for threes, but why not do both?
In recent years, Izzo has placed more emphasis on spreading the floor, moving the ball around and finding the open man either around the perimeter or in the post. He met with Warriors coach Steve Kerr a couple of years ago and adopted some of their offensive philosophies and the offense has benefitted greatly from it.
There’s still an emphasis on defense and rebounding, but you’re seeing more high-powered Michigan State offenses than ever before and that was never more evident than with the 2015-16 team that lost to Middle Tennessee State. That was arguably the best shooting team in the Izzo era but unfortunately it died by the three in the NCAA Tournament.
Through the years, even in the early days of Izzo, there have been some incredible sharpshooters at every position for Michigan State.
Let’s piece together the ultimate sharpshooting squad with three guards and two forwards/centers because, well, Michigan State is new to the floor-stretching big man game.
Note: Shawn Respert deserves a mention for being arguably the best shooter in school history, but he just missed the Izzo era.