Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Gary Harris' availability for Wednesday
By Joe Kaiser
Michigan State's Gary Harris is getting closer to a return to the court after back spasms forced him out of last week's game against Illinois, but will the highly touted freshman be ready for Wednesday's big game against No. 18 Minnesota?
Harris, who scored 14 in a win over the Fighting Illini, returned to practice Monday but was held out of contact drills and scrimmages according to the Detroit Free Press.
"(Coaches and trainers) kept me out of full contact just so I wouldn't aggravate it again," Harris told the newspaper after practice. "They were just being cautious."
Backup point guard Travis Trice hasn't been cleared to play and is also questionable after hitting his head in the game with Illinois. If neither Harris or Trice play, it will hurt the Spartans' defense and their ability to stretch the floor offensively. Their minutes would likely go to young wings Denzel Valentine and possibly Russell Byrd, who both spent time practicing with the starters on Monday.
Shawn Windsor of the Free Press adds:
"If Harris plays and Trice doesn't, Valentine will help Keith Appling with the point at times, though Izzo suggested he might use Appling all 40 minutes."