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Preseason No. 2 Michigan State kicks off its 2017-18 campaign on Friday night, as Tom Izzo and the Spartans face off against Atlantic Sun foe North Florida.
Tip is scheduled for about 8 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on Big Ten Network. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can watch the game online, on your phone or on another streaming device by signing up for a free trial of one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
Fubo TV: The “Fubo Premier” channel package includes Big Ten Network and comes with a free 7-day trial, allowing you to watch MSU vs UNF tonight at no cost. You can watch on your computer via the Fubo TV website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Fubo app.
DirecTV Now: There are four different channel packages, while “Just Right” and above are the ones that include Big Ten Network. A free 7-day trial is offered with this service. You can watch on your computer via the DirecTV Now website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app.
A year after losing in the Round of 32 and failing to reach the second weekend of the NCAA tournament for the second consecutive year, Michigan State enters the 2017-18 season with its highest preseason ranking since Gary Harris, Adreian Payne and Keith Appling were still on campus.
The Spartans’ title hopes hinge on the play of Miles Bridges. After averaging 16.9 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks as a freshman, the potential Top-10 pick shockingly turned down the NBA for a second year in Lansing and now enters his sophomore campaign as the AP preseason National Player of the Year.
MSU will likely go as far as Bridges takes them this year, but there’s plenty of other talent on the roster, as well. Nick Ward, Joshua Langford and Cassius Winston should all be improved after promising freshmen campaigns, blue-chip true freshman Jaren Jackson is a potentially dominant big man and could join Bridges as a Top-10 pick next June, and Lourawls “Tum Tum” Nairn is there to provide energy and senior leadership.
On the other side of this matchup, North Florida finished third in the Atlantic Sun last year and have been picked by coaches and media to finish in that spot once again this season. The player to watch for the Ospreys will be Wajid Aminu. The younger brother of Portland Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq, he put up 9.1 points, 6.5 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 26.0 minutes per game as a freshman and has been tabbed as the ASUN Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
“Wajid’s length, athleticism and uncanny timing for blocking shots with either hand coupled with his two-handed rebounding allows his defensive prowess to dominate on a nightly basis and ignites our break and fast pace play,” head coach Matthew Driscoll said.
The 6-foot-7 Aminu is likely to matchup with Bridges, which will provide a really good test for the potential Top-10 pick in his sophomore debut.