It was at once a surprising decision and not a surprise at all.
Miles Bridges – the freshman phenom for the MSU basketball team – decided to stay for a second year instead of going to the NBA.
It was a surprise because most people expected Bridges, a potential first-round draft pick, to leave Michigan for the big leagues, where paydays for first rounders reach into the millions of dollars.
It wasn’t a surprise because of the way Bridges chose to announce it: a tweet at mid-day Thursday inviting people to hear his decision at the Sparty statue.
“It’s not about me. It’s about US” the tweet read.
It was highly unlikely that Bridges would invite everyone to a huge personal announcement only to let them down.
Hundreds of people turned up to hear the decision in person.
“I want to win a national championship,” Bridges told the crowd, which responded with a chant of “3 more years!”
The Flint native had an incredible freshman season. He was named “Freshman of the Year” by the Big Ten coaches and the media and his rim-shaking dunks dominated many a highlight reel.
Bridges’ decision means the Spartans could gear up for a championship run in 2017-18. His much-heralded freshman class, which includes Josh Langford, Nick Ward, and Cassius Winston, will stay and grow together. The Spartans also have at least two more highly prized recruits joining the team, and they’ll get a big man back after injuries took both of them out last season.
The Sports Illustrated “Way-Too-Early” poll had MSU at 8th – and it’s likely they made that decision thinking Bridges was leaving. The Bleacher Report had MSU at 12, definitely acting under the assumption Bridges was taking off.
“If he does come back and the Spartans can avoid the type of October injuries that derailed them this year, every single preseason Top 25 ballot ought to have Michigan State in the Top Five,” the article said.
Stay tuned to 6 News for more on Bridges’ decision and the reaction to it.