Michigan State v Duke

Michigan State’s Gary Harris ready to return from ankle injury

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Michigan State sophomore guard Gary Harris averaged 12.9 points and 2.5 rebounds per game on his way to Big Ten freshman of the year honors this past season, and that’s with him battling through injuries.

About a month and a half ago, another injury has plagued the Spartans shooting guard as he has been sidelined with an ankle injury. Harris expects to be cleared for practice next week, according to ESPN College Basketball Insider Jeff Goodman.

“If there were a game right now, I would play,” Harris told ESPN. “I’m probably about 75 percent.

“I was lucky,” Harris added. “I thought it was worse than it wound up being.”

A healthy Harris coupled with four returning starters is why Michigan State sits within the top 3 of some polls, even bumping Kentucky for the No. 1 spot in several preseason polls. Harris had the chance to be a one-and-done, but elected to return to East Lansing for his sophomore season. According to Diamond Leung of MLive.com, Harris has bulked up a little bit from his freshman year to 210-pounds. The added size will hopefully keep him on the floor because Tom Izzo has big plans for his two-guard in 2013-2014.

“We’re going to use him in 100 different ways,” Izzo said. “He’ll have the ball in his hands more, more pick-and-rolls for him, more pick-and-pops. He’s also really improved his ability to shoot off the dribble and pull up on a dime.”

Henry Ellenson wins Marquette Madness dunk contest

Steve Wojciechowski
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Marquette freshman forward Henry Ellenson won the Marquette Madness slam dunk contest on Friday night with a between the legs dunk.

The 6-foot-10 Ellenson, the top recruit in Steve Wojciechowski’s freshmen class, defeated sophomore Sandy Cohen, fellow freshman Sacar Anim and Wally Ellenson, his older brother.

Ellenson joins the Golden Eagles as the No. 11 overall recruit in the Class of 2015.

Bill Self signs $10,000 check for KU student

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Late Night in the Phog is typically a night to remember for Kansas fans. For Kansas student Jerrod Martin Castro, Friday night’s event is one he won’t forget.

Castro, a sophomore, was selected as a contestant for a $10,000 giveaway. The only thing standing in the way of a big payday was a half-court shot. Brennan Bechard, the Kansas director of basketball operations, attempted the long-distance shot and hit nothing but net.

Kansas head coach Bill Self signed a $10,000 check on the spot.