#1 Michigan State to face #2 Kentucky in Champions Classic

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EAST LANSING, MI (WILX) -- For just the second time in history, the top two teams in the College Basketball AP Poll will face off their season opening game.

Michigan State is traveling to New York Monday night in preparation for the big game Tuesday.

Michigan State will play in the Champions Classic in New York City at Madison Square Garden against the #2 ranked Kentucky Wildcats. One of the big questions is how will the freshman react to playing their first college basketball game in the Mecca of Basketball.

"I hope they're nervous, I really do and I hope they're excited. That's the privilege you get of playing a schedule like this. You could have gone to a million schools that never play in these kinds of games," said Tom Izzo, MSU head coach.

"Anything I can pass to them is, it's going to be a lot more fans, a lot more expectations and a lot louder. It's going to be a bigger stage but we're still playing basketball. You can't make it bigger than it is, you got to lock in and focus. You have been through harder things with coaches and practices than what you're going to go through in the game, you know, it's just that he's been preparing you for this moment. Just keep it basketball and you'll be fine, don't make it something bigger than it is," said Aaron Henry, MSU sophomore.

"I can't even explain how happy I am right now you know to play at Madison Square Garden and play against a good team. Just go out there and have fun with my guys, I'm very excited for that game," said Rocket Watts, MSU freshman.

The Spartans and Wildcats are expected to tip off around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday night on ESPN. Duke and Kansas play first at Madison Square Garden.

Michigan State's home opener is this Sunday at 7 p.m. when the Spartans host Binghamton.

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