Dec. 18, 1997

Michigan State Men's Cagers Look to Corral Bulls of South Florida

GAME No. 9 -- vs. South Florida	Sat.
Dec. 20	5:00 pm	Tampa, Fla.
												
MICHIGAN STATE PROBABLE STARTERS (5-3 overall) -- subject to change
F -- #13  ANTONIO SMITH (Jr., 6-8, 8.6 ppg, 7.9 rpg)
F -- #44  JASON KLEIN (Jr., 6-7, 10.0 ppg, 2.5 rpg)
F -- #34  ANDRE HUTSON (Fr., 6-8, 6.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg)
G -- #14  CHARLIE BELL (Fr., 6-3, 10.3 ppg, 4.9 rpg)
G -- #12  MATEEN CLEAVES (So., 6-2, 14.9 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 7.1 apg)
     	
SOUTH FLORIDA PROBABLE STARTERS (7-2 overall)
F -- # 4  CEDRIC SMITH (Fr., 6-4, 10.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg)
F -- # 5  ARTHA REEVES (Fr., 6-7, 8.3 ppg, 6.3 rpg)
C -- #13  SCOTT JOHNSON (So., 6-10, 13.4 ppg, 5.0 rpg)
G -- #15  BRIAN LAMB (Sr., 6-3, 6.0 ppg, 2.1 rpg)
G -- #23  SHADDRICK JENKINS (Jr., 6-3, 10.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg)	

GAME INFORMATION -- After posting a win over Wright State on Wednesday evening, the Michigan State men's basketball team ventures toward the Sunshine State for a Saturday (Dec. 20) battle against the University of South Florida. The USF Sun Dome (10,411) on the South Florida campus will serve as the site of the first-ever meeting between Michigan State and USF and tipoff is scheduled for approximately 5:05 p.m. EST.

COVERAGE -- The Michigan State-South Florida game will be telecast by ESPN. Providing play-by-play will be DeWayne Staats while Jon Sundvold will handle analysis. All MSU basketball games can be heard on WJIM Radio (1240 AM/97.5 FM). Describing the play-by-play is Mark Champion while former Spartan cager Gary Ganakas serves as analyst for the for MSU-USF contest.

THE RECORDS -- MSU takes an overall record of 5-3 into the South Florida game. In their most recent outing, the Spartans hammered Wright State by a 95-52 margin at home on Wednesday (Dec. 17). In that game, the Green and White led from start to finish and received double-figure scoring from six players. Leading the scoring parade was sophomore guard Mateen Cleaves with 16 points while freshman guard Charlie Bell chipped in 14. The 95 points represented the highest total by a Tom Izzo-coached Spartan club while the team's 58.2 percent mark from the floor (39 of 67) also marked the best effort by an Izzo-directed team. In games played at the Breslin Center this season, MSU is 4-2, 1-1 in road contests. South Florida hosts the Spartans with an overall slate of 7-2. The Bulls are coming off a 65-56 home win against Northeastern on Wednesday (Dec. 17). USF has captured four of its last five encounters.

THE SERIES -- Saturday's game will represent the first battle between the Spartans and the Bulls in basketball.

THE COACHES -- Michigan State is guided by head coach Tom Izzo (Northern Michigan '77), who is in his third season at the helm of the program. Izzo has a school and career record of 38-31. In games at the Breslin Center, Izzo has posted a record of 27-11, 11-20 on the road. Izzo has directed the Green and White to appearances in the NIT in each of his first two years. South Florida Head Coach Seth Greenberg (Farleigh Dickinson '78) is in his second season leading the Bulls and checks into the MSU contest with a 15-21 won-lost ledger (8-19 in 1996-97). Prior to his current post, he served as the head coach at Long Beach State (1990-96) where he registered a mark of 105-70. In eight years as a college head coach, Greenberg has a career mark of 120-91. He is 0-1 against Michigan State (lost 70-60 to the Spartans in the 1994 Oldsmobile Spartan Classic championship game in East Lansing).

TOM IZZO RADIO SHOW INFO -- The Tom Izzo radio show can be heard throughout the state of Michigan on MSU basketball radio affiliates. The show will be held at Tripper's Sports Lounge on Mondays from 7:00-8:00 p.m.

SPARTANS AMONG BIG TEN LEADERS IN BOARD PLAY -- MSU enjoyed a decisive 49-34 advantage in rebounding against Wright State, the fifth time this year that the Spartans have posted an advantage of 15 or more caroms than their opposition. Entering the South Florida contest, the Spartans hold a 42.6-29.9 per-game edge in rebounding and held down the No. 3 spot in the Big Ten at the start of the week in rebounding margin. Since Tom Izzo has been head coach, the Spartans have outrebounded 54 of 69 opponents and hold a 34-20 record when enjoying an edge on the glass.

TAKING CARE OF THE ROUNDBALL IS KEY -- MSU saw a streak of turning the ball over more than its foe come to an end at six games after finishing with 15 turnovers compared to Wright State's 16. In games where the Spartans have more turnovers than the opposition, MSU stands 3-3 this year while showing a 2-0 mark in '97-98 when it has fewer turnovers, 11-1 since last year. Through eight games, MSU is averaging 17.8 turnovers per contest (17.0 for the opposition).

MSU AND THE BRESLIN CENTER -- MSU's win over Wright State on Dec. 17 upped its all-time record at the Breslin Center to 101-26 (.795) since the facility opened in 1989 (48-7 vs. non-conference opponents, 53-19 in Big Ten contests). MSU has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in 71 games at the Breslin Center while allowing the opposition to reach that mark on just 17 occasions.

QUICK FACTS -- After eight games, MSU is shooting 44.9 percent (107-of-238) from the floor in the first half and 50.6 percent (126-of-249) in the second half ... Opponents are shooting 36.3 percent (76-of-209) from the field in the first half and 42.3 percent (97-of-229) over the final 20 minutes of action ... The Spartans have been outshot from the foul line in five games and are connecting at just a 53.8 percent (85-of-158) vs. the opposition's effort of 65.4 percent (100-of-153) ... MSU is averaging 34.0 points in the first half of play (26.5 for opponents) and 40.8 points in the second half (34.5 for opponents) ... The Spartans have enjoyed a second-half scoring advantage in their last four and in a total of six contests this year ... The Spartans are allowing 61.0 points per game through eight games and have given up 70 or more points just once.

THOMAS DOUBTFUL FOR USF GAME -- Sophomore David Thomas (7.7 ppg, 7.0 rpg), who missed the Wright State game because of a sprained knee ligament suffered late in the Detroit contest, is doubtful for the tilt against South Florida.

MOST POINTS BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
95, vs. Wright State (12/17/97)
90, vs. Illinois-Chicago (12/5/96)
89, vs. Central Michigan (11/28/97)
86, vs. Evansville (12/17/96)
85, vs. Cleveland St. (12/6/97)
84, vs. Detroit (12/14/96)
83, vs. Weber State (12/28/96)
83, vs. Kent State (12/28/96)
83, vs. Cleveland St. (12/3/96)
83, vs. E. Tennesee St. (11/25/96)
FEWEST POINTS ALLOWED BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
41, Ohio State (2/7/96)
43, Kansas State (12/21/96)
45, E. Tennessee (11/25/96)
49, Wisconsin (3/1/97)
50, Geo. Washington (3/12/97)
50, Wisconsin (1/9/97)
50, Washington (3/13/96)
51, Weber State (12/28/96)
BEST FG% SHOOTING GAMES BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
58.2% vs. Wright State (12/17/97)
56.9% vs. Central Mich. (11/28/97)
56.3% vs. N'western (2/27/96)
56.1% vs. Illinois (3/6/96)
54.5% vs. Kent (12/27/96)
53.6% vs. Kansas State (12/21/96)
53.1% vs. Wisconsin (3/1/97)
53.1% vs. Evansville (12/17/96)
53.1% vs. Illinois (1/6/96)
BEST DEFENSIVE FG% EFFORTS BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
23.8% by Kansas State (12/21/96)
29.8% by E. Tennessee (11/25/96)
31.1% by Wright State (12/17/97)
31.3% by Idaho State (12/30/95)
31.7% by George Washington (3/12/97)
32.6% by Ohio State (2/7/96)
33.3% by Cleveland St (12/6/97)
33.3% by Indiana (3/8/97)
33.3% by Wisconsin (1/9/97)
33.3% by Minnesota (1/27/96)

MORSELS FOR MUSING -- MSU has won 14 of its last 15 games when holding the opposition to 60 or fewer points (3-1 in 1997-98) ... During Izzo's stint as head coach, the Spartans post a 25-4 mark in such games ... Since last season, the Spartans are 10-1 when scoring 80-plus points (4-0 in 1997-98) ... Antonio Smith claims nine career double-doubles ... Under Izzo, MSU is 34-6 when leading at halftime (5-0 this year) ... MSU is allowing 61.0 points per game after eight outings vs. last season's average of 63.0 ... Dating from last season, the Spartans have failed to shoot 70 percent or better from the foul line in the last 14 contests ... MSU has forced the opposition into 20 or more turnovers on three occasions this year ... The Spartans have outscored the opposition in 11 out of 16 halves of basketball ... MSU has given up 50 percent or better from the floor in three halves of action while reaching that mark on nine occasions ... MSU has attempted more free throws than its opponents in five contests ... Since Izzo has taken over as head coach, MSU is 30-4 in games when it has outshot the opposition from the field ... The Spartans have held their opponents to less than 10 field goals in a half on three occasions this year ... After eight outings, MSU is averaging 16.1 offensive rebounds vs. the opposition's average of 10.2.

MSU PLAYER NOTES

# 11-- Sophomore David Thomas missed the Wright State game with a knee sprain ... Has started seven games ... Held scoreless for the first time this season in the Detroit (12/13) game (22 minutes) ... Tallied a career-high 12 points vs. Cleveland State (12/6) and his five field goals tied his career high ... Shot 50 percent or better from the floor in five games ... Shooting 54.3 percent from the floor (25-of-46) ... Played a career-high 33 minutes in the Temple contest ... Coca-Cola Classic All-Tournament after totaling 18 points and 20 boards ... First career double-double came against Gonzaga with 10 points and 10 boards (board total tying career high) ... Came up with 10 boards against Central Michigan (11/28), tying him with Antonio Smith for game honors ... 10 points vs. Illinois-Chicago, hitting a career-best five-of-six field goal attempts ... No. 2 on the team in rebounding (7.0 rpg).

cleaves photo
Mateen Cleaves.

#12 -- Sophomore Mateen Cleaves leads the team in minutes (32.6 mpg), scoring (14.9 ppg) and assists (7.1 apg) ... Leads the Big Ten in assists ... Has scored in double figures his last seven games (15.8/avg.) including a career-best 21 points vs. Detroit (12/13) ... Hit six-of-nine from the field and posted a team-high 16 points vs. Wright State (12/17) ... Game-high 17-point effort vs. Cleveland State (12/6) ... Has led or shared for the team's scoring lead in the last four and in a total of six contests ... No. 2 on squad in treys with 15 ... Coca-Cola Classic MVP after scoring 29 points and doling out 19 assists against Central Michigan and Gonzaga ... Career-high 11 assists against Gonzaga was the first time a Spartan had more than 10 assists in a game since Eric Snow's 11 vs. Wisconsin (3/11/95) ... Notched game-high 19 points and doled out eight assists vs. CMU .. Shooting 52.7 percent (19 of 36) from the floor in last three games ... Team-highs in points (17) and assists (5) vs. Illinois-Chicago (11/21) ... Registered team-high seven assists vs. East Tennessee (11/17) ... Has 203 assists in 37 career contests (5.4 apg) ... Has led or shared for MSU's lead in assists in 32 of 37 career outings ... Scored in double figures in 23 outings during his career (16 in '96-97).

#13 -- Junior Antonio Smith paces the team in rebounding (7.9 rpg) ... Recorded his second double-double of the year and ninth of his career with a season-high 13 points along with 10 boards (team high) vs. Detroit (12/13) ... Shooting 60.8 percent (14 of 23) from the floor in the last three contests ... Has three games of double-figure scoring this season ... Hit six field goals and totaled 12 points at Cleveland State (12/6) ... Has led or shared for MSU rebounding honors in four games including a 10-board performance vs. CMU ... No. 2 on the club in minutes (29.0 mpg) ... Has three double-digit rebounding outings this season ... Notched first double-double of the year vs. ETSU (11/17) with 11 points and 10 boards ... 22 career contests of 10 or more boards and five of 15-plus caroms ... Third-Team All-Big Ten pick last year.

#14 -- Freshman Charlie Bell is No. 2 on the team in scoring (10.3 ppg) ... Coming off a 14-point performance vs. Wright State, his second double-figure scoring effort in the last three games and fourth of the year ... Registered a season-long 33 minutes vs. Detroit (12/13) and finished with nine points ... Shooting 50 percent (9 of 18) from the floor in the last two games ... Has at least one trey in his last four contests including a season-best two vs. Wright State ... 29 minutes and registered 13 points vs. Cleveland State (12/6) ... Also paced the squad in rebounding vs. CSU with nine caroms, the first time a Spartan guard had led MSU in boards since Eric Snow grabbed six vs. Weber State in the 1995 NCAA Tournament ... No. 2 on the squad in scoring against CMU (11/28) with a career-best 17 points ... Paced the team in scoring vs. ETSU (11/17) with 15 points while also chipping in seven boards and two assists ... His point total marked the first time that a true frosh had led MSU in scoring in a season opener since Jay Vincent's 25 points vs. Central Michigan (11/28/77).

#30 -- Freshman Doug Davis has played a season-long 17 minutes vs. Wright State (12/17) and posted his first double-figure scoring effort of the year with 11 points ... Sank three treys against Wright State ... Averaging 10.3 minutes per game ... Played 10 minutes (second-longest stint of the season) and scored two points vs. Cleveland State (12/6) ... Hit a trey en route to three points in nine minutes vs. Central Michigan ... 13 minutes off the bench vs. ETSU (11/17) and scored eight points while dishing out three assists.

#34 -- Freshman Andre Hutson is averaging 21.5 minutes per game ... Is the team's No. 2 shooter from the floor, hitting 60% (24 of 40) of his attempts ... Has started the last six MSU contests ... Grabbed seven boards in 26 minutes vs. Detroit (12/13) ... Averaging 6.5 rebounds in the last four contests ... Hit six-of-nine from the field and finished with 13 points (tying season high) at Cleveland State (12/6) ... Has shot 50 percent or better from the field in five contests ... Five-of-seven from the floor, finishing with 11 points, and snared a game-high nine boards in a season-long 30 minutes vs. Temple (12/4) ... No. 3 on the team in rebounding (5.5 rpg) ... Strong effort in the Coca-Cola Classic where he started both games and shot 69.2 percent from the floor -- averaging 11 points ... Tallied a team-high 13 points in the championship game vs. Gonzaga in 28 minutes ... Made first career start against CMU, playing 21 minutes and registering nine points and five boards ... No. 2 on the club in blocked shots with 10 ... 16 minutes off the bench vs. ETSU (11/17) and grabbed six boards, tops among the reserves ... Blocked three ETSU shot attempts.

#42 -- Sophomore Morris Peterson came back to play vs. Wright State (12/17) after missing the previous three contests with a fractured bone in his right wrist (suffered in the Gonzaga game) ... Tallied a season-high 11 points against WSU, hitting five-of-seven from the floor, while also grabbing a season-high five boards ... Averaging 6.8 points and 3.6 boards in five games ... Hit five-of-seven field goal attempts en route to a season-high 10 points against Gonzaga (11/29) ... Posted four rebounds and six points in 16 minutes vs. Illinois-Chicago ... Played 14 minutes vs. ETSU (11/17), scoring five points ... Played in 29 games last season, 18 as a starter ... Has scored in double figures on seven occasions in his career, five of which came last year ... Six of his double-figure scoring efforts have come at home.

granger photo
A.J. Granger.

#43 -- Sophomore A.J. Granger has come off the bench in MSU's first eight games and is averaging 12.9 minutes ... Averaging 2.9 rebounds ... Established career highs in field goals (4) and points (8) in the Wright State (12/17) contest while playing a season-high 19 minutes... Played 16 minutes vs. Cleveland State (12/6) and grabbed a career-high six boards ... Has scored in six of MSU's eight games ...18 minutes at UIC (11/21) and snatched five boards, tops among the subs, and tying his then personal best ... 13 minutes of action vs. ETSU (11/17) and and finished with five points and three rebounds.

MATEEN CLEAVES HIGH-SCORING GAMES
Date      Opponent      Pts.
12/13/97  DETROIT       21
 2/15/97  Illinois      20
11/28/97  CENT. MICH.   19
 1/11/97  OHIO STATE    18
12/17/96  Evansville    18
MATEEN CLEAVES' TOP ASSIST GAMES
Date      Opponent      Ast.
11/29/97  GONZAGA       11
 2/12/97  IOWA          10
 1/18/97  N'WESTERN      9
12/21/96  KANSAS STATE   9
ATNONIO SMITH'S HIGH REBOUND GAMES
Date      Opponent       Rebs.
 3/8/97   INDIANA        19
2/22/97   PENN STATE     17
1/2/97    Indiana        16
1/29/97   Purdue         15
12/14/96  Detroit        15
ANTONIO SMITH'S CAREER DOUBLE DOUBLES
Date      Opp.         Pts./Rebs.
12/13/97  DETROIT       13 /10
11/17/97  E. TENNESEE   11 /10
 3/ 8/97  INDIANA       10 /19
 3/ 6/97  Minnesota     10 /14
2/26/97   Ohio State    10 /10
 2/ 1/97  Michigan      12 /10
 1/29/97  Purdue        17 /15
12/14/97  Detroit       13 /15
12/ 3/97  CLEVE STATE   16 /10

#44 -- Junior Jason Klein is No. 3 on the team in scoring (10.0 ppg) ... Recorded his fifth double-figure scoring effort of the year vs. Wright State (12/17) with 11 points (tying season high) ... Has scored in double figures in five of his last six outings ... Shooting 53.8 percent (7 of 13) from beyond the arc in last three contests ... Totaled 11 points vs. Temple (12/4), tying him for team honors ... No. 1 on the squad in treys with 20 ... Coca-Cola Classic All-Tournament Team pick after scoring 21 points and grabbing 10 boards in the two games ... 11 points in 17 minutes against Central Michigan ... Sank three treys against the Chippewas, tying his career high ... Has two or more treys in all eight contests this year ... Played a career-long 29 minutes vs. Illinois-Chicago (11/21) and hit three treys en route to nine points ... 21 minutes as a reserve vs. ETSU and notched nine points, tops among the subs ... Sixteen career games of two or more treys (five coming last year, three in '95-96).

#55 -- Senior DuJuan Wiley is averaging 13.4 minutes per outing through seven contests ... Played a career-long 22 minutes against Wright State (12/17) and established career bests in points (10) and in rebounds with a team-leading eight ... Also blocked three shots against the Raiders ... Has scored in every game ... Grabbed seven rebounds vs. Detroit ... Team leader in field goal shooting, hitting 69.0 percent (20 of 29) of his attempts ... MSU leader in blocked shots with 15 ... Tied his career high in blocked shots with four in the Cleveland State (12/6) game and also grabbed five rebounds ... First career start came in the ETSU (11/17) game where he played 20 minutes while finishing with a six caroms and four blocked shots, tying career high.

BET YOU DIDN'T KNOW THAT -- Junior forward Antonio Smith has started the last 35 Spartan contests while sophomore guard Mateen Cleaves has the starting nod in MSU's last 32 encounters ... Smith has 498 career rebouds, just two shy of reaching the 500 career mark ... Dating from last year, the Spartans have made three or more three-point field goals in their last 18 games ... MSU has allowed just 26 of its last 157 opponents to shoot 50 percent or better from the field ... Through games played Dec. 17, the Spartans' three losses come to teams with a combined record of 20-5 (Illinois-Chicago 9-1, Temple 6-2 and Detroit 5-2).

SCOUTING SOUTH FLORIDA -- Through nine games, USF is averaging 66.0 points while allowing 59.9 The Bulls are shooting 42.9 percent from the floor while their opponents are connecting at a 38.9 percent rate. Sophomore forward Scott Johnson, 6-foot-10, leads the team in scoring (13.4 ppg) and is tied for the team led in treys with 13. Junior guard Shaddrick Jenkins (10.4 ppg) and freshman forward Cedric Smith (10.2 ppg) round out the double-figure scorers.