MSU and Memphis get underway here at The Palace of Auburn Hills momentarily. And here is a quick primer.
MSU starters: G Keith Appling, G Gary Harris, G Branden Dawson, F Adreian Payne, C Derrick Nix
Memphis starters: G Geron Johnson, G Joe Jackson, G Adonis Thomas, F D.J. Stephens, F Shaq Goodwin
Officials: Roger Ayers, Michael Roberts, Dwayne Gladden (2 of the 3 reffed MSU’s first-round win over Valparaiso)
Here’s my overlook from Thursday. Some other key things to watch for:
* Memphis struggled with foul trouble in its first game against St. Mary’s. The Spartans can exploit that with its much quicker perimeter presence.
* Tigers struggle at the free-throw line, shooting just 66.2 percent.
* Stephens loves to block shots. Nix can’t take the ball up soft against him, regardless if he’s covering him. Pump fakes should be at a premium, as the Tigers bite on them.
* Appling vs. Jackson should be interesting. The Memphis guard said he knows what the MSU star does well and doesn’t do well from their time as teammates on USA Basketball.
For more, follow Graham Couch, Joe Rexrode and myself on Twitter throughout the game.