Nicholas Sanders, son of Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders, is joining the Michigan State men’s basketball team as a freshman walk-on.

The Spartans on Friday released their 2022-23 men’s basketball roster, which shows Sanders wearing No. 20 — the same number his father donned during his legendary career with the Detroit Lions.

Nicholas, listed as a 5-foot-9, 170-pound guard, attended Detroit Country Day School, where he wore No. 23.

Over the summer, Barry Sanders made an appearance at an MSU basketball practice, where he chatted with the team as Nicholas was considering his college options.


Sanders’ oldest son, Barry J. Sanders, played college football for Stanford (2012-15) and Oklahoma State (2016), his father’s alma mater.

Tom Izzo’s squad finished 23-13 last season, including 11-9 in Big Ten play, and earned an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament as the No. 7 seed in the West. The Spartans defeated Davidson in the first round before losing to Duke.

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