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BB RECRUITING

Where does Coen Carr rank amongst other legendary MSU rim rockers?

Coen Carr is special.

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Coen Carr
© Michael Caterina / USA TODAY NETWORK

Incoming four-star Coen Carr is known for his athleticism and rim-rocking dunks. But where does he stand against other MSU dunking greats?

It’s no secret that incoming freshman Coen Carr is immensely talented and the best athlete in the 2023 recruiting class. Currently, Carr sits as a four-star, the 24th-ranked player via ESPN. This ranking is slightly higher than in previous months, as he was previously well below fellow Spartan commit Jeremy Fears.

Carr’s recent jump is due to his elevated level of play over the last month. His playmaking has begun to catch up to his incredible athletic ability. His performance in the Iverson Classic was a great showcase of how he has improved his game all around over the last few weeks, finishing with 19 points and seven rebounds.

With that being said, Carr is still known for his high-flying, vicious dunks. After winning yet another dunk contest, Carr has clearly found his calling card. He may produce countless highlight reels punishing rims, but where does he rank amongst Michigan State’s all-time high flyers?

Let’s take a look back at some other high-flyers from Tom Izzo’s time at the helm.

But first, some Coen Carr highlights.

Incredible stuff

Jason Richardson, G, 6-foot-6 (2000-01)

As a part of MSU’s last national championship team, Jason Richardson was one of the first to electrify the crowd during the Izzo era with a high-flying dunk. Often lauded as Michigan’s best high school dunker ever, Richardson was dunking at just 14 years old. He is quoted as saying “I wanted to rip the rim off every time I dunked.” His passion for sending fans into a craze with a dunk didn’t stop back in Saginaw as Richardson continued living above the rim in East Lansing.

During his expedited stay at MSU, Richardson compiled an extremely impressive highlight reel, eventually moving on to the NBA and becoming a two-time NBA Dunk Champion.

As a side note, Richardson’s son, Jase Richardson (a 2024 target for Tom Izzo), recently proved he got much of his dad’s jumping abilities as he delivered a hard ‘and-one’ dunk at EYBL Session 2.

Shannon Brown, G, 6-foot-4 (2004-05)

Out of Chicago, Shannon Brown is one of the highest-ranking recruits for Izzo. Brown was the third-best player in 2003, only trailing Lebron James and Luol Deng. While it took some time for Brown’s offense to catch up to his athletic ability (not unlike what I expected from Coen Carr), Brown eventually would become a major piece for Izzo and the Spartans.

As far as flying through the air to get fans in the Breslin out of their seats, Brown took over where Richardson left off. Winning the high school dunk contest, Brown continued his violent approach at the rim for the green and white. He would amass a large list of players he posterized over his three seasons at MSU. When Shannon was on the move through the lane, business decisions by the defense had to be made to either attempt a block or save face and simply get out of the way.

Miles Bridges, G/F, 6-foot-7 (2016-17)

Back in 2016, Miles Bridges took over Twitter with his dunking highlights similar to that of Carr. Bridges was a better all-around player at his time of recruitment than Carr, but both showed no remorse for their fellow high school opponents.

Back in 2015 at the Nike Global Challenge, Bridges threw down an in-game windmill dunk off the backboard that nearly stopped the game. His game style did not change once he began playing for Izzo and the Spartans. Bridges constantly found himself cutting back door to be on the receiving end of a vicious alley-oop. Call it recency bias, but Bridges is one of the best dunkers of the Tom Izzo era.

Will Carr join the like of these Spartan dunking legends? Only time will tell but based on what we’ve seen so far, Michigan State better reinforce the rims at the Breslin, because Carr is comin’.

Writer and contributor for Spartan Shadows. Tyler Dutton, a graduate of Michigan State, is a college and professional basketball specialist with over four years of experience writing on both the Spartans and Pistons.

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