No. 5 Spartans Rout Michigan, 91-64
Jan. 30, 2001
By LARRY LAGE
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - Michigan's Chris Young said he was so humiliated that he wished he could hide under his bed.
Instead, Young could only sob in his father's arms after No. 5 Michigan State beat Michigan 91-64 Tuesday night for its first six-game winning streak over its chief rival. Jason Richardson scored 17 points to lead five Spartans in double figures.
"There were people that quit on this game when we were down 20," Young said.
Michigan State (17-2, 6-2 Big Ten) followed up a good start with a 24-0 run midway through the first half to turn the game into a rout.
"It's hard to know what to say after a game like that, because I've been on the other end of it" said Michigan State coach Tom Izzo, who lost his first five games to Michigan.
"I really thought this was going to be a great game. We shot the ball so well, better than I thought we could. And we got back to playing the defense that I think this team needs to play, is capable of playing and hasn't played in the last couple of weeks."
Michigan State made 57.9 percent of its shots overall, all 18 of its free throws and held Michigan to 33.9 percent shooting.
LaVell Blanchard, the co-Big Ten Player of the Week, scored 27 points for the Wolverines (9-10, 3-5). Bernard Robinson added 10 points.
The game wasn't as much of a blowout as the last meeting - when Michigan State pounded Michigan 114-63 in East Lansing - but it was close.
It had to be especially disheartening for the Wolverines because their
inexperienced team had been playing its best basketball of the season while
Michigan State was coming off an nine-point loss at Ohio State.
Bell insisted that the rivalry with Michigan, as lopsided as it has been recently, is still alive.
But did he expect to ever see the Spartans dominate the Wolverines as they have recently?
"Never, never," Bell said. "Especially growing up here in the state of Michigan, following the matchups year in a year out with the Fab Five and how Michigan dominated over the years. When we got that first win (in 1998), we never knew we would win as many."
The Spartans gave an indication of the type of game it was going to be when they jumped out to a 12-3 lead within the first few minutes.
"We definitely wanted to come out and make a statement," Bell said.
Michigan State extended its lead from 26-18 to 50-18 in a span of six minutes.
"Everything we tried worked," Hutson said. "We executed one of our best halves of the year, both on offense and defense."
The Spartans led 56-27 at halftime after making 66.7 percent of their shots and holding Michigan to 21.4 percent.
Michigan State opened the second half with a 16-3 run to take a 74-30 lead, its largest of the night.
Izzo showed some mercy by playing many of his reserves over the last several minutes of the game.
Several thousand Michigan State fans made their way into Crisler Arena, which inspired the Spartans and had to humiliate the Wolverines as they heard taunts, cheers and their rivals' fight song.
Michigan coach Brian Ellerbe disagreed with Young's statement that the Wolverines quit.
"I think Chris is very upset with the loss, he's an in-state kid," Ellerbe said. "I'm sure he didn't mean that. He's an in-state kid that probably feels it a little bit more than the other guys did."
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