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Michigan State basketball is top 20 nationally in assists per game

Not too shabby.

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Michigan State basketball
© Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Michigan State basketball ranks in the top 20 nationally in terms of assists per game. Yet another elite passing team under Izzo.

Michigan State basketball is regularly one of the best teams in the country when it comes to average assists per game. That is no different this season. The Spartans find themselves in the top 20 nationally when it comes to average assists per game.

Let’s take a quick look at how MSU stacks up against the rest of the country.

MSU top 20 in assists per game

So far this season, Michigan State is averaging 18.4 assists per game. That has the Spartans No. 4 in the Big Ten and No. 16 in the country. The other Big Ten teams ahead of MSU are Minnesota (shockingly), Iowa, and Purdue. BYU leads the nation at 22.2 assists per game, a substantial lead over the Spartans.

Leading the way for the Spartans is AJ Hoggard with 5.1 assists per game. Jeremy Fears and Tre Holloman are second and third on the team with 3.3 and 3.2 assists per game respectively.

The Spartans got off to a slow start this season when it comes to assist totals. They failed to hit 20 assists in four of their first six games. Their season low so far this season is only 10 against Arizona, which is surprising to me since we were competitive in that game.

MSU has greatly improved its assist totals during their three game win streak, with 18 against Baylor and 23 against Oakland. However, those don’t even come close to the total they put up in their last game. In their dominant win over Stony Brook, the Spartans nearly set a program record with 33 assists. This total rising is definitely one leading reason why we’ve looked so much better recently.

Recent program success in assists per game

As I mentioned earlier, MSU is routinely one of the top teams in the country in assists per game. This is first seen in the last three seasons when the Spartans had some “down years”. Even during those down years, the worst we finished nationally in assists per game was last year when we were No. 52 in the country. The 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons saw Michigan State basketball finish in the top 25 both seasons at 24 and 22, respectively.

The three years before that however, we went on a legendary run. The three prior years saw MSU finish in the top three nationally each season. This includes No. 2 in 2019-20, No. 3 in 2018-19, and No. 1 in 2017-18.

These three years coincide with Cassius Winston’s final three seasons in East Lansing. As the assist leader in Big Ten history, it is no surprise we found this much success nationally.

Personally, I’d love to see Michigan State take its number this season into the 20s. That would most likely make them Top 10 in the country and would likely mean we’re continuing to have a great season. Tyson Walker is only averaging 2.5 assists per game which is less than I would hope from him. So I think he is the most likely candidate to increase our team total by 1.5 to get us into the 20s.

Lead writer for Spartan Shadows since April 2023, writing over 450 articles. Michigan State basketball, football and recruiting expert. Class of 2019 graduate from Michigan State University specializing in Sports Management. Daily MSU runs a popular X page (@daily_msu) covering all things MSU Sports.

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