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Friday, January 8, 2010
Spartans' Sims to join hoops team

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Dion Sims came to Michigan State with the hope of playing both football and basketball for the Spartans.

Now he's getting his wish.

After completing his freshman season as a tight end for Michigan State's football team, Sims will join Tom Izzo's basketball squad on Sunday. Sims, who plays forward, finished fourth in voting for Michigan's Mr. Basketball Award as a high school senior. He averaged 21.9 points and 9.4 rebounds for Orchard Lake St. Mary's school, the alma mater of Spartans star point guard Kalin Lucas.

Michigan State head football coach Mark Dantonio signed off on the move.

Izzo told local reporters: "I have no expectations, just because I don’t know. I think it’s going to be good to have a tough kid around who’s a good athlete who can play, but where it goes from there, I have no idea. Right now, I need that [skill set] on the scout team some, and we'll see what happens."

Michigan State's basketball team, ranked No. 10 nationally, isn't exactly strapped for talent, especially at the forward sport. But this is a pretty cool opportunity for Sims, who becomes the first Michigan State player to participate in both sports since former wide receiver Matt Trannon from 2004-06.

The 6-5, 268-pound Sims has tremendous potential in football and had 11 receptions for 133 yards and three touchdowns this fall for Michigan State.