In yesterday’s article, I mentioned the matchup between Georgia and Michigan State we had coming up this afternoon as likely the headliner and most fun of the day. Michigan State, having just come off a loss to Virginia Tech last night, and being ranked third overall in the nation, was in desperate need for a win today against Anthony Edwards and the Dogs. Georgia on the other hand, having just lost to Dayton the previous day, also needs to put a win on their own record.
Let’s be honest though, the expectation level for these two teams is strikingly different. Despite the fact that UGA did surprisingly land Edwards, they have no other noteworthy, or players considered top prospects, talent on their roster. The team essentially belongs to AE, and at most we expect a first or second round March Madness exit from them. In contrast, Michigan State is a team with experience both in the frontcourt and at point guard with senior Cassius Winston at the top of their depth chart. Coming into the season as a top five ranking in lock, most analysts fully expect at least another trip to the sweet sixteen from this squad.
The game itself did not disappoint, with Michigan State bouncing back from yesterdays loss in a valiant effort to outrun Edwards 33 point second half explosion. Edwards obviously lacked some overall help from the rest of his team, with the second highest scoring total coming in at 13 points from Rayshaun Hammonds, the second leading scorer for them at roughly 15 points per and 9 boards. Cassius lead a well rounded effort from M State, which he did by dropping 28 and 8 on the Bulldogs, though it was accompanied by 15 from Tillman, 14 from Henry, 9 from Hall, and various other chip ins from the rest of the roster.
The most noteworthy or news related content to come out of a game like this is just how well Edwards played in a game that mattered. Not only did he drop 37, but he piled up 6 boards, 4 steals, and 3 blocks. Though Winston is the veteran here and a prospect in his own right, it’s undeniable that the star freshman will be the talk of the draft and CW will likely be a late first round pick.
While Michigan State will undoubtedly advance farther into the March Madness Tourney than Georgia, the Dawgs certainly house the better pro prospect, and we saw several on display in today’s game.
I’ll leave you with this, if you’re an NBA fan please go watch some Jaylen Brown tape from this season, and then watch Anthony Edward’s UGA highlights. He’s without question my pro comparison to him, and likely a good example of what his ceiling may be.