Michigan State already has a thinning rotation of players to start the 2014-15 season and the Spartans received some more bad news during Friday night’s season-opener against Navy when starting sophomore guard Alvin Ellis left the win with an ankle injury.
According to a report from Kyle Austin of MLive, Ellis went down grasping his ankle with 9:20 remaining in the first half. Ellis later returned to the bench with ice on his right ankle and didn’t return to the contest.
“From what I saw, it didn’t look good,” Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo said after the game. Izzo also remarked that he didn’t think the ankle was broken.
While this might not be a catastrophic injury to the Spartans’ season, Michigan State is already without freshman guard Javon Bess, who has a broken foot, and Cleveland State transfer and guard Bryn Forbes has a broken non-shooting hand that he’s attempting to play through.
Of course, these injuries matter in the short term because Michigan State has its biggest non-conference game of the season on Tuesday in Indianapolis when the Spartans face No. 4 Duke as part of the Champions Classic.
Duke cruised to an easy 113-44 win over Presbyterian on Friday night and the Blue Devils look deep and balanced. Michigan State will have to find a way to stop Duke’s potent offense with a limited rotation in order to have a chance on Tuesday night because it looks like Ellis isn’t going to be able to play.