Michigan State guard Josh Langford has reaggravated the same left foot injury that held him to only 13 games last season, according to 247 Sports. The announcement came shortly after the Spartans were ranked atop the preseason AP poll.
Michigan State’s Josh Langford Is Out Indefinitely
Langford was expected lead a veteran Michigan State team alongside player of the year candidate Cassius Winston and Xavier Tillman. He averaged 15 points and 3.6 rebounds over 13 games last season. Tom Izzo did not have much information other than that Langford’s mid-foot stress reaction was back. Izzo was visibly in tears, stating that he “loved Langford and the effort he gave him on and off the court.”
The Spartans will have to reshuffle their rotation with less than two weeks until their opener against Kentucky. Izzo mentioned Kyle Ahrens and Aaron Henry as possible replacements in the lineup. If Henry is chosen, Gabe Brown may slot into fill his small forward role.
AP poll voters may have voted a little differently if Langford’s injury had happened one day early. The announcement may have kept Michigan State from starting at the top. However, the Spartans level of expectations will not change with this injury. This team still has depth, and Langford will still be able to lead from the sidelines and at practices. Izzo is also a fantastic coach who knows how to configure a winning team with his pieces.
Michigan State has put together a tough non-conference schedule, which is not a surprise. This means that Izzo does not have as many “cupcake” games to tinker around with different lineups and still expect to win comfortably. The Spartans play Seton Hall on the road and Duke at home. The Kentucky game is on a neutral court, as are all the games they will play in the Maui Invitational, which could include a matchup with Kansas in the championship. That amounts to four games against teams ranked in the preseason top 15 before hitting the full conference schedule. These tests should provide Izzo with a good idea of who he can trust in pressure situations without Langford.
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