1. AJ Hoggard, Tyson Walker combine for 30 points, 10 assists
Michigan State should win this game comfortably, so I’m not going to waste a prediction on the final score or spread prediction (although I think the Spartans cover -21.5). Instead, I’m going with some praise for what I believe is the best backcourt in the Big Ten.
Against Grand Valley, we saw Tyson Walker and AJ Hoggard combine for 20-plus points and nine assists while stealing the ball at a high clip. We’ll see them play well together again.
Walker is going to get hot early and hit some early threes while Hoggard takes advantage of his size and aggressiveness and gets into the lane for some easy finishes around the rim. Plus, driving on either of these two just doesn’t work well for opposing guards and they’ll be swiping a few balls for easy transition buckets.
Hoggard is going to finish with 14 points, seven assists, and three steals while Walker has 16 points, three assists, and four steals.
Not a bad opener for the dynamic backcourt, potentially without Jaden Akins.