Kansas Set For Bout with Michigan State


Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

It’s another installment of the Champions Classic.

Now in its fourth year, the Kansas Jayhawks will take on Michigan State following the earlier matchup between Duke and Kentucky.

The field represents three of the four winningest programs in NCAA history (Kentucky No. 1, Kansas No. 2, Duke No. 4), as well as three of the top 5 ranked teams in the country this season.

Combined, the two games will also feature two dozen future NBA players, most of which will likely be highly productive players at the professional level.

The glamour game is Duke and Kentucky, but the grind-it-out, hard-nosed battle will most certainly involve KU and Michigan State.

Bill Self coached Illinois prior to his arrival in Lawrence, and knows what Big 10 basketball is all about. Self understands MSU coach Tom Izzo will want the game played in the 60’s and come down to rebounds and loose balls.

This year, however, Izzo does present a team with more athletic ability and offensive firepower than his typical Spartan teams, which would match up better with a Kansas team that features incredible depth and scoring.

Still, Self and Izzo both preach defense and demand it from their players each time they take the floor.

Kansas had two very distinct advantages, Tuesday night.

One, the Jayhawks, according to Self, are probably a month ahead of where they normally are at this point due to the competition and play in the World University Games in June and July. KU went 8-0 and won the gold medal with its current roster, including freshman. The only three that didn’t play were freshman Cheick Diallo (NCAA eligibility), Brannen Greene (hip injury), and Devonte Graham (leg injury).

Diallo is still awaiting word from the NCAA, but Self has full use of Greene and Graham, which gives him two uber-talented and experienced players.

Michigan State will have Denzel Valentine, a senior that has given the Spartans an incredible 3+ years thus far, but will be without one of its best players, Gavin Schilling, who is battling turf toe.

Regardless of two premier players missing in action tonight, the game is guaranteed to be one of the more entertaining of the early college basketball schedule.

Michigan State holds an all-time 6-5 record over KU, but the Jayhawks are considered the favorites on Tuesday in Chicago.

Kansas’ next home game isn’t until Dec. 1, as the Jayhawks are headed to the Maui Invitation over Thanksgiving. Tickets For Less has a variety of incredible seating options for all Jayhawk home games at Allen Fieldhouse. In need of seats? Visit Tickets For Less to choose from seats located throughout The Phog. Don’t miss out on your chance to watch the Kansas Jayhawks make a run for another national title in 2015-2016. Go Jayhawks!


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