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Tom Izzo Reacts To Rocket Watts' Transfer Decision

A closeup of Tom Izzo during a Michigan State game.

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - APRIL 05: Head coach Tom Izzo of the Michigan State Spartans looks on during practice prior to the 2019 NCAA men's Final Four at U.S. Bank Stadium on April 5, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

After two years in East Lansing, former four-star point guard Rocket Watts announced he is leaving Michigan State and entering the transfer portal. While Spartans head coach Tom Izzo is no doubt upset at losing one of his prized recruits, he's taking it in stride.

In a statement released this afternoon, Izzo explained that the pandemic made it difficult for Watts to get the necessary practice time with the team. He said that after discussing things with Watts, the two agreed that he deserved a fresh start somewhere else.

"Rocket has made progress in all facets of his life, especially making tremendous strides academically," Izzo said in his statement. "We appreciate the contributions he's made over the last two years and wish Rocket nothing but the best in his future. He'll always be part of the Spartan Family."

In two seasons with Michigan State, Watts started 31 of 55 games and averaged 22.5 minutes per game. He averaged 8.4 points, 2.0 rebounds and 2.2 assists during his time with the Spartans.

Coming out of SPIRE Academy in 2019, Rocket Watts was a four-star prospect and the No. 39 player in the country per 247Sports. He was the No. 7 combo guard in the nation and the No. 2 prospect from the state of Ohio.

Watts chose Michigan State over a stacked list of offering schools that included Connecticut, Florida State, Louisville, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon and Xavier.

Whoever does get Watts will be getting a player of enormous talent and the confidence of Tom Izzo.