Feb. 8, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. -
Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo
I thought we were bad, good, bad, good, bad, good, good. Not to take anything away from them. We started out the game shooting three's, four of the first six shots. We're checking everybody; we did a good job of that. Then we went on a run, as soon as we get a lead we just kind of start going away from what we're doing. Tonight our bigs didn't play as well, give them credit on one game. I thought both (Adreian) Payne fumbling the ball and (Derrick) Nix didn't get a chance to get into the thing. Just didn't play like I want us to play. So we won a game, they came back, give them a lot of credit. We hold them to 20 percent the first half, they shoot 54 percent in the second half, 60 (percent) from the three. We turned the ball over 14 times and half of them unforced. If there was one positive stat, which doesn't make sense because it is an energy stat, that was the number one offensive rebounding team in the conference and I thought that's one thing we put a lot of emphasis on. Maybe mostly (Draymond) Green and (Branden) Dawson by themselves did a hell of a job. We don't out rebound them a lot, but we outrebound them a lot on the offensive end. That was encouraging, but more discouraging than encouraging. I haven't felt that way in a while so I guess I'm ready for a big game.
On the run Penn State made and getting the ball to Draymond Green...
He's supposed to do that and we're supposed to get him the ball. If you notice after that he didn't score but he made two assists. I loved the way we practiced all week; I didn't like our approach today. Game-day wasn't very good. Day-Day, I played him too many minutes straight again. A couple times he got a little tired defensively. After a slow start he did a heck of a job. it's just too bad that we're 12-12 from the line and after that we were 9-22 I think. Day-day missed some but he gets 12 rebounds, 23 points, five assists, one turnover and he could've had a triple-double if someone could've made a layup.
On being nervous that this could be a trap game...
I was. And yet we practiced really well. I was really proud of how well we practiced, just didn't like the game. It is really hard with these games because you're used to having an hour shoot around and now we have a 6:30 game. We weren't getting them out of class. So they get out of class at 2:30 and run over here and we get a 20 minute walk-through in. I shouldn't have even done that maybe that is my fault. It just kind of screwed up things. So our day of the game I had to get them together during our warm-ups. I thought we were kind of going through the motions, nothing bad just going through the motions. But the two practices we had were great. I hate to be this way after a 20-point win, it makes it look like I'm downplaying Penn State and their effort. Everybody in this league has said Pat (Chambers) has done an incredible job, his team playing hard and I agree with that, they really do.
On the play of Keith Appling...
He finally put a smile on his face. He did a lot of things, seven assists and one turnover. When he was on (Tim) Frazier, he did a hell of a job on Frazier. I thought Appling played really good in everything except looking for his shot and shooting a little bit. He's getting more comfortable. He's figuring out that ok I'm going to take some shots and we have to get him back taking them now. I was happy the way Keith played, I really was. That last three was good for him, and good for us.
On the play Branden Dawson...
He did a pretty good job, he has been one bright spot. (Travis) Trice did a pretty good job, considering who he was guarding. Frazier went on that little stretch there late, but he can do that to a lot of people. Tim is a hell of a player. It wasn't easy covering him but he goes 6-18 and 0-3. What he does a good job of is getting fouled. I thought Trice was good but (Branden Dawson) B.J. was great. Even defensively, he switched off on Frazier a couple of times, he can really guard. He had a couple steals and started out the second half good. Him and Day-Day are starting to become a good team. He knows when to cut and Day-Day gets him the ball. Day-Day gave so many guys passes; (Adreian Payne) should have had a couple dunks early. I was pleased with our passing; we had 16 assists on 23 baskets and I think it could have even been better.