Happy Thanksgiving basketball fans. It's a light Big Ten Schedule today, with only two Big Ten matchups taking place. The Michigan State Spartans look to stay undefeated against Boston College and the Iowa Hawkeyes also try to keep their record unblemished against Dayton.
Let's take a look at each game.
Game of the Night: Michigan State Spartans vs. Boston College in Fullerton, Calif. (6:30 PM ET | ESPN2)
The Spartans will look to stay hot in a game played on a neutral court in the Wooden Legacy tournament. Tom Izzo's crew has looked impressive so far, taking down fourth ranked Kansas 79-73 and winning their other three games but an average of 32 points. Those other contests may have come against Florida Atlantic, Arkansas Pine-Bluff and Eastern Michigan, but so far the Spartans look pretty legit.
One of the most encouraging things about the Spartans start is how they've spread the scoring throughout the lineup. Five players (Denzel Valentine, Bryn Forbes, Javon Bess, Deyonta Davis and Matt Costello) are averaging over 9.5 points per game, which has allowed Valentine to continue to be a jack-of-all trades stud who excels at everything. So far, the senior is averaging 15.3 points, 9.8 assists and 9 rebounds in just over 30 minutes a game.
Something to watch on Thursday and over the rest of the non-conference schedule is how the Spartans' new players continue to progress. Davis has come along nicely so far, scoring double digits twice, including a 16-point effort in just 18 minutes on Monday against Eastern Michigan. It will be interesting to see how much his playing time increases (right now its 20.3) as the season progresses. The same can be said for Eron Harris and Matt McQuaid. Their contributions haven't been huge yet, but both are playing about 18 minutes a game and both have looked impressive at times. McQuiad nailed three 3-pointers against Kansas, and Harris is coming off a 10 point, seven rebound, four assist game of his own against Eastern Michigan.
Boston College hasn't beaten anyone too impressive yet, but the Eagles have still won their three games by an average of 20 points. Senior guard Eli Carter leads them in scoring at 18.7 points per game.
- Michigan Wolverines vs. Charlotte in Paradise Island, Bahamas (9:30 ET | AXS TV)
The Wolverines are desperate for a win after losing two in a row, including a 74-60 contest to UConn last night. One key for Michigan will be getting its supporting guys more involved. Against the Huskies, Caris LeVert and Derrick Walton combined for 31 points (LeVert had 21) but the rest of the team combined for just 29.
Thankfully for the Wolverines, Charlotte is off to just a 1-3 start this season. Michigan can't really afford to take anyone lightly right now, but this game is a good opportunity for them to get back in the win column.
- Iowa Hawkeyes vs. Dayton in Orlando, FL (9:00 PM | ESPN2)
The Hawkeyes are coming off an 89-61 beat down of Marquette a week ago. Six of Iowa's players (including all five starters) scored in double digits against the Golden Eagles, as the Hawkeyes shot 54.5 percent from the field and from three. The star of the night was probably junior guard Peter Jok, who scored 20 points on 7-12 shooting in just 18 minutes. Marquette might be pretty bad, but it was still an impressive performance.
Tonight's game could be a little more interesting as Dayton is also 3-0 and has returned three starters from last years NCAA Tournament team. This game will be a good test for an Iowa team that hasn't played a close game yet this season.