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Michigan State Misses Out on Brandon Johns

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Second Round-Kansas vs Michigan State Brett Rojo-USA TODAY Sports

On Thursday morning, 2018 forward Brandon Johns announced his commitment to John Beilein and the Michigan Wolverines.

A 6-foot-8 four-star forward ranked 54th in the 2018 class according to 247 Composite; Johns also held offers from various Big Ten schools such as Indiana, Michigan State, Purdue, Wisconsin, and Ohio State.

What makes this Johns' recruitment interesting is he's a hometown kid.

No, Johns is not a resident of Ann Arbor, in fact, he lives in East Lansing, the home of Michigan State University. Being from East Lansing, Tom Izzo and his staff have had complete access to Johns and distance working in their favor to do anything they can to put him in a Sparty uniform.

Granted, Michigan is one of the best places to play basketball in the country with Beilein leading the charge and the success of their teams in the recent years, but Tom Izzo had a great player in his backyard the past couple years, and he just missed out on him.

As soon as Michigan State started expressing interest in Johns, people ranging from his family to national media expected Izzo and his staff to keep him home in East Lansing. Now, Johns admitted he wasn't a lock to select Michigan State which worked in Michigan's favor because the Wolverines seemed to prize Johns as a valuable piece to the future success of the program more than Sparty did.

So, what does Beilein heading into enemy territory and taking away the top player in Michigan from East Lansing mean for Michigan State and the future of Great Lake State Rivalry?

There's no question Michigan State has as good as a chance as any program in the country to make a Final Four in the next year or two.

Obviously, Naismith Player of the Year Candidate and rising sophomore forward Miles Bridges will be the go-to guy for the Spartans next year and the chances of them winning their first title since 2000 will rest on his shoulders.

The one question is, though, who will replace Bridges as the primary scorer on the Michigan State roster as he will likely enter his name in the NBA Draft at the conclusion of the upcoming season?

At 6-foot-8, Johns is classified as both a three and a four at the forward position. His versatility on both sides of the floor is what makes him unique for someone of his height and length.

2018 Top 100 SF Gabe Brown has pledged a commitment to the Green and White but is more of a catch and shoot type of player while Johns knows how to create better for himself and teammates like Bridges.

Could guys like Josh Langford, Jaren Jackson, Nick Ward also become reliable scorers? There have been flashes of their scoring capabilities, but there going to need to be consistent to get Tom Izzo his second title at Michigan State.

Kudos to John Beilein though for removing a hometown kid away from one of the most prestigious college basketball programs in the country.

Michigan State has had at least one of the two top high school players in the state of Michigan dating back to 2015 while Michigan has only had one in 2013 in Derrick Walton.

Could Johns' recruitment become an omen to Michigan taking away top in-state recruits from Michigan State?

This rivalry on the court and the recruiting trail will be a lot of fun to watch in the future.