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Tom Izzo says Jaxon Kohler could be back soon

This team needs him.

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Jaxon Kohler
© Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Jaxon Kohler hasn’t played yet this season and it’s clear that the Spartans miss him. Tom Izzo said he could be back soon.

Jaxon Kohler has been out all season due to an injury, but that could be changing soon. Tom Izzo stated recently that Kohler is progressing well in his rehab and could be back practicing next week.

Here is the report from Chris Solari of the Detroit Free Press.

Potential return date for Kohler

You never know if coaches are being 100 percent honest when discussing player injuries. A lot of coaches share as little information as possible and others aren’t comfortable sharing a return date at all. Tom Izzo has actually given us a fair amount of information this time, so much so that I think it’s time to finally start getting excited about Jaxon’s return.

Kohler will need some regular practice time before he plays in a game, as is the norm for all players. But the fact this could be next week is huge. This timeline does line up for a potential return before Christmas, as Izzo mentions. Michigan State’s next two games are against Nebraska and Baylor. These are two good teams and I don’t think it would make sense to rush Kohler back against difficult competition. I think it makes the most sense to bring him back during the next stretch of games after those two.

Michigan State has an easier stretch after they play Baylor, including games against Oakland and Stony Brook. Both teams are .500 or worse, so that could be a good opportunity to ease Jaxon back in. These games are on Dec. 18 and 21. Based on all of this information from Izzo, my guess is Jaxon will return on Dec. 21 against Stony Brook.

Kohler’s return will be a huge relief for Spartan fans

Jaxon will bring something that this team has been missing desperately when he does return: An offensive presence in the post.

Malik Hall has done well in this regard and I think AJ Hoggard is capable as well, but Kohler will be our best threat down low. He isn’t the biggest or strongest guy, but he makes up for it with impressive post moves and footwork.

We don’t have a big right now that we can confidently throw the ball to in the post and expect to create their own shot. Carson Cooper and Mady Sissoko have their strengths they bring to this team, but that isn’t one of them.

Enter Jaxon Kohler. He is that post player who can create his own shot, which Michigan State needs badly.

Having that presence down low will also open up more opportunities for our guards. Right now, opposing defenses can focus on shutting the guards down due to MSU not having a legit threat in the post. When Kohler returns, teams will have to respect his post game which will open up more space and driving lanes for AJ, Tyson Walker, and Jaden Akins to thrive.

Something needs to change for this team. We’re sitting at 4-4 and it honestly feels even worse than that. Hopefully Kohler’s return will be the spark we need to get back to playing the Michigan State basketball we all love.

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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