Michigan State opens its home basketball season Friday night when it hosts Mississippi Valley State. The No. 13-ranked Spartans are 0-2 after losses against Arizona and Kentucky on opposite ends of the county — Hawaii and New York City.
So safe to say they’re looking forward to being home for a few days. Mississippi Valley State has lost its first three games of the season.
Michigan State freshman Miles Bridges had 21 points and 7 rebounds in his debut against No. 10 Arizona but had a tough night in the 69-48 loss to No. 2 Kentucky on Tuesday. He was limited to 6 points on 2-of-11 shooting and turned the ball over 9 times — but still pulled down 12 rebounds and had 3 blocked shots.
Michigan State didn’t have a single player score in double figures against Kentucky, although sophomore forward Kenny Goins equaled career highs with 9 points and 8 rebounds. Freshman point guard Cassius Winston also had 9 points.
This is the first of two home games this weekend; Michigan State hosts Florida Gulf Coast on Sunday night.
Here’s everything you need to know about how to watch/listen to this matchup:
Michigan State vs Mississippi Valley State: game time, details
Time: 7 p.m. (ET) tip-off
Date: Friday, Nov. 18
Location: Breslin Center, East Lansing, Mich.
The line: N/A.
Which TV channel is Michigan State vs. MVSU on?
The game will be broadcast online only via BTN Plus.
How can I watch Michigan State vs. MVSU online?
How can I listen to Michigan State vs. MVSU on the radio?
The game can be heard on radio over the 38-affiliate Spartan Sports Network, including flagship stations WMMQ-FM (94.9)/WJIM-AM (1240) in Lansing and WJR-AM (760) in Detroit. It is also on Sirius/XM Channel 81.
Who is calling the Michigan State vs. MVSU game?
Kevin Gehl will handle play-by-play for BTN Plus with analyst Kevin Pauga. Will Tieman will call play-by-play with analyst Matt Steigenga on the Spartan Sports Network.
Find a flow on offense
Michigan State has committed 38 turnovers in its first two games. Playing Mississippi Valley State won’t offer the same challenges as Arizona and Kentucky, making this the kind of game where Michigan State can begin working out the kinks of its offense. Bridges has committed 13 of the turnovers. He is going to be the focal point of the offense so he must take care of the ball better.
It’s not just Bridges. The Spartans have already gone through long scoring droughts in both games. They need to find a consistent rhythm to the offense. They have just 24 assists on 45 made field goals thus far.
Can Eron Harris get on track?
The senior guard has scored just 9 points and averaged just 16.5 minutes in the first two games. He had foul issues against Arizona but against Kentucky, head coach Tom Izzo was upset with Harris’ lack of defense and sat him on the bench.
Harris had a primary defensive role last season but the expectation is that he’ll be more of a force on offense this season. He averaged 17.2 points a game as a sophomore at West Virginia before transferring to Michigan State. He averaged 17.8 points in four games last season when Denzel Valentine was injured and unable to play.
Play with intensity the whole 40 minutes
Izzo called the performance against Kentucky “embarrassing” and his goal this weekend is to find out which players want to live up to the program’s standards of hard play. Mississippi Valley State and Florida Gulf Coast aren’t Arizona and Kentucky but Izzo said this weekend is about correcting the ills of the first two games and making sure Michigan State takes care of its own business.
Kevin Goheen covers Michigan State for Landof10.com. Follow him on Twitter at @CincyGoGo