Appling Hungry for More

"We want to go undefeated, win the city championship and the state championship." – Detroit Pershing junior guard Keith Appling

Last week, fans saw head coach Tom Izzo welcomed two new members to the Spartan family when class of 2009 big men Garrick Sherman and Derrick Nix signed to play ball at Michigan State.

A year from now MSU will bring in at least two more recruits, one of whom will be Nix's teammate Keith Appling. Appling, Scout.com's No. 12 ranked two-guard in the 2010 class, helped lead his Detroit Pershing Doughboys to the state championship game in his sophomore season, only to lose to Saginaw and current Spartan Draymond Green.

The title game loss left an awful feeling in Appling's stomach, and he is hungry to get back to the Breslin Center along with Nix and what may be the state's top team to earn the title that was kept away from them by the defending state champs.

Pershing began practice this week, and Appling can see the appetite his team possesses.

"It been going good so far," Appling recently told GSN. "Everybody's been going hard, just trying to get ready for the season."

Before practice began on Monday, Appling made the trip up to East Lansing to take in the MSU-Idaho game. Michigan State's other 2010 commit, Russell Byrd, was at the Breslin as well.

Appling and Byrd make a formidable duo, but there is room for MSU to add another player in the class, and Appling periodically speaks with fellow 2010 guard Trey Zeigler to try to lure him to East Lansing.

Appling is a combo guard, but will play more at the point during his stint at Michigan State. He can't sign until next fall, so other schools are still sending mail to him in hopes that he will back out of his commitment. The schools that have sent the greatest amount of mail are Memphis, Marquette, Indiana, Miami, and Syracuse.

Appling has immense talent, and may actually be the best player in the state regardless of class, but he definitely is not getting complacent. He worked heavily on his mid-range game and his ball-handling skills during the off-season, and the junior hopes the extra work will help his team achieve their lofty goals.

"We want to go undefeated, win the city championship and the state championship," he said.


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