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Michigan State’s Cassius Winston sheds light on if he will leave for NBA

Feb 7, 2017; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans head coach Tom Izzo talks to guard Cassius Winston (5) during the second half against the Michigan Wolverines at Crisler Center. Michigan won 86-57. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Though some Michigan State fans refuse to admit it (I won’t mention names), the 2018-2019 season was a special one. Not only did they tie for a Big Ten regular season title, won the Big Ten Tournament, and advanced to the Final Four, but they did so without one of their top players heading into the season, Joshua Langford.

With Langford out, junior point guard Cassius Winston elevated his game and leadership abilities to a level not often seen at the college level.

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Winston was nothing short of amazing for the Spartans this season as he averaged 18.8 points and 7.5 assists and was named the AP Big Ten Player of the Year and was selected as a first-team AP All-American.

But what’s next for Winston? Does he return for his senior season to further solidify his legacy in the Spartans’ history books?

Following Saturday’s loss to Texas Tech in the Final Four, a game in which Winston shot just 4 of 16 from the field and had a season-low two assists, the Spartans’ PG spoke to The Athletic about his future. Though he did not come straight out and say it, it sure sounds like Cassius is planning on returning for his final season in East Lansing.

“I really think I’ve just got a whole other level that I can go, know what I’m saying?” Winston says. “My body is not where I want it to be. My legs are not as strong as I want them to be. So it’s going to be a change, another big jump that I can do. The numbers (next year) might not be as crazy, and those types of things, just because we’ve got more players, things like that, but I’m still going to have that kind of impact.”

Of his future, Winston says he wants to “just put myself in a position where I have a chance.”

“I want there to be no doubt, no question. Just, he’s ready,” he continues. “I’ll do everything I can to make it happen.”

Winston is extremely smart and he clearly realizes he has some work to do if he wants to play in the NBA. Returning to Michigan State for his senior season is the first step to making that happen.

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