SPARTANS MUST IMPROVE TO BEAT TEXAS

     I'll use the word "sloppy."  I think MSU's men's basketball team gets too sloppy at times and that must drive Tom Izzo nuts, considering the stickler he is for perfection in these games and at practice.  But the MSU players do strange things at times, especially when there's no clue a bad pass, or poor decision is about to be made.

     Tom's best player to me is Raymar Morgan, but he can't do it alone.  His guards are inconsistent, at least they have been throughy nine games and yet MSU has a 7-2 record.  The Texas game Saturday should be a good litmus test of where this team is-- good or needs plenty of more work?  Tom is confident his team will step up to the plate and give the fifth ranked Longhorns all they want when the teams meet in Houston at 2pm.  I'm not sure Texas doesn't have some issues to solve either.

     This will probably be a season of trial and error requiring Tom's patience.  Nothing seems to come easy for this team unless it plays Alcorn State again.  Goran Suton needs to keep playing, keep improving, keep getting stronger.  If he does, then Izzo will have some more options on his front line.  He still doesn't have consistent scoring after Morgan and he gets that only if Morgan can stay away from foul trouble, not always an easy task.  These MSU players collectively are not great free throw shooters and that could get them down the stretch in a key game also.

     I don't see any other Big Ten teams that look that much more talent laden so we'll stay with MSU as a solid Big Ten contender until further notice.  If Izzo is frustrated by his team at times he can't be as unhappy as his peers on campus-- Suzy Merchant and Rick Comley, both of whom are ready to jump off a cliff given what they've seen from their own teams recently.

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