NCAA Basketball: James Madison at Michigan State

James Madison delivered an early upset on the first day of the 2023-24 season by knocking off No. 4 Michigan State 79-76 in overtime on Monday in East Lansing, Michigan. The victory vs. MSU is just the second Top 25 win in program history after knocking off then-No. 19 Cal on Dec. 29, 1992.

JMU forward Raekwon Horton knocked down a 3-pointer with 8.6 seconds left in overtime and T.J. Bickerstaff knocked down one of his two free throws on the following possession to seal the win. 

Bickerstaff hit a short jumper with 30 seconds remaining in regulation to force overtime. Bickerstaff finished with 21 points and Terrence Edwards Jr. scored a team-high 24 points.

The Dukes were able to hold off a star performance from MSU guard Tyson Walker, who scored a game-high 35 points. Walker had the ball stolen near the 3-point line at the end of regulation. Michigan State finished the game 1 of 20 from deep. 

JMU finished last season 22-1, falling to South Alabama in the semifinals Sun Belt Conference Tournament to end its season. 

Michigan State hosts Southern Indiana on Thursday before facing No. 2 Duke on Nov. 14 in the Champions Classic. As for JMU, it will look to build off its upset win over the Spartans against Kent State on Thursday.

Uncharted territory for Tom Izzo

The last time an AP top-five team lost their season-opener against an unranked opponent was you guessed it... Michigan State in 2005. In that season, the Spartans lost their opening game against Hawaii and Monday marked Izzo's first November home loss at Michigan State in his 29-year coaching career. The last time the Spartans lost a home game in November was in 1986. The Spartans have played most of their marquee nonconference games at neutral sites, but nonetheless, an incredible streak came to a close with the loss to the Dukes. 

Walker was awesome, but Sparty needs more

Walker is not only one of the top scorers in the country, but he also so happens to be one of the most clutch players in America. Walker made a layup with 1:26 left in regulation to give his team a four-point advantage, but they couldn't close it out. Walker was one of only two MSU players (Coen Carr) who scored in double figures. MSU missed 19 of 20 3-point attempts and other experienced players such as Malik Hall, Mady Sissoko, Jaden Akins and AJ Hoggard didn't contribute enough on the offensive end to help Walker. 

MSU has a unique blend of experience and veteran leadership that should allow them to win these kind of games in blowout fashion. That certainly wasn't the case on Monday. Shooting 5% from beyond the arc isn't going to win MSU many games when the gauntlet of the schedule starts.