The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly From Michigan State's Exhibition Opener

The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly From Michigan State's Exhibition Opener

A few observations from No. 2 Michigan State's 80-72 exhibition win over Ferris State on October 26, 2017.

Oct 26, 2017 by Brett Regan
The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly From Michigan State's Exhibition Opener

All it took was six seconds for Michigan State star sophomore Miles Bridges to catch the opening tip-off, finish with an easy dunk, and make it look like the No. 2 Spartans were going to cruise to an easy victory on Thursday night. However, that was far from the case.

Playing in its first exhibition game of the season, Michigan State certainly had to knock off some rust before using a late second-half run to take care of Ferris State 80-72 at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, MI.

There is nothing for the Spartans to be too alarmed about following their first tuneup of the season, but here are some observations from the contest:


Jaren Jackson Jr. And His Crazy Length: The buzz about the McDonald’s All American was crazy as soon as he stepped on campus, and the 6-foot-11 power forward definitely proved the hype was real in his debut. Coming off the bench, Jackson dropped 14 points on 5-for-9 shooting and eight rebounds in 21 minutes and used his 7-foot-4 wingspan to swat eight of Michigan State’s 13 blocked shots on the night. The freshman put on a show and looked really good in the process. 

Cassius Winston’s Second Half: When the Spartans needed an offense spark to put Ferris State away, the sophomore floor general answered the call. Winston scored 20 of his game-high 26 points in the second half and dished out a game-high five assists with just one turnover. It was a quality game for the young point guard, who started the game over Lourawls Nairn Jr., and could be a sign of great things to come this season.

Poster Dunks: The game might not have been the blowout many were anticipating, but there was no shortage of highlight plays. Jaren Jackson Jr. had a nasty poster dunk in the first half, and then Miles Bridges threw this down on his way to 19 points.


Outside Shooting: Perhaps it was first-game jitters. Maybe it was an off night. Whatever the case, it just was not a good shooting performance for Michigan State. Joshua Langford went 0 for 12, Matt McQuaid was 2 for 10, and the Spartans combined to shoot under 35 percent for the game and 26 percent from 3-point range. In fact, they were 3 for 21 behind the arc before McQuaid buried a triple from the top of the key that gave them the lead for good. This is nothing to be concerned about unless it becomes a trend in the next couple of weeks.


The Fall That Scared Everyone: With 7:29 remaining in the first half, Miles Bridges jumped to contest a shot and landed hard on his face in a fall that completely sucked the energy right out of the building. You could have probably heard a pin drop at the Breslin Center as the star forward laid on the ground for a few moments — and rightfully so. Bridges is one of college basketball’s biggest stars, and no one really knew just how bad the fall was at the time.

Thankfully, Bridges got up and went to the locker room, received a few stitches, and started the second half. The fall itself was ugly, and scary, and it was the only real uneasy moment in a game that was far from perfect.