Feb. 13, 2007
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EAST LANSING, Mich. -
Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo
That was a big win for us, a real big win. I still think that is a very good Michigan team. It was a heck of a battle. We had a couple good stretches. I thought we had a lot of play out of a lot of guys in different ways. Idong Ibok's basket meant something, Maurice Joseph's layup meant something, a couple steals he had, but I thought Raymar Morgan, Travis Walton and Drew Neitzel did a lot of things offensively, in different ways. Even though Walton only scored one basket. I thought Drew Naymick did a phenomenal job on Courtney Sims - he's a load, he's a good player. It was a win we needed. It's not easy to come off of four losses, there's no question about it, especially when you are playing a good team and your rival. I still think Michigan's got a lot of wins left in them and I mean that. That's a good basketball team, and we took a couple guys away and did a decent job on Deon Harris. He's a heck of a player, and I think that was maybe the difference in the game. I'm really proud of this team because we've been through a lot in the last couple weeks and we came out and played as tough and hard as we could.
On the play of Raymar Morgan...
I told you he's been practicing, for the first time last week. He's starting to get back, he missed some shots early, some layups, but Raymar is a heck of a player and I don't think any of us will appreciate what its been like to be out as long as he was. It's hard for a freshmen to get back and right in the groove of things. I think my staff did a good job, we went to him inside a little bit too. We mixed it around a little bit for him, and got some post-ups and some cuts to the basket - he just did a good job. He did a good job defensively, those guards are hard to check.
Michigan Head Coach Tommy Amaker
Certainly a tough second half for our ball club. Give a lot of credit to the Michigan State kids for their ability during the second half. Drew (Neitzel) carried them in the first half and I thought Raymar Morgan played an outstanding overall game. I'm disappointed that we couldn't do a better job at getting better shots and taking care of the ball. We knew that coming in here this evening, trying to take care of the basketball, trying to get quality shots and positive possessions was going to be key for us. We weren't able to do that enough in a game like this tonight.
On the turnovers...
I thought their pressure was solid. I thought at times we were trying to over penetrate instead of making easier plays. We got the ball knocked off of us, I didn't think we were strong enough with it. We'll get a chance to look at the review of the film, but certainly I thought that we needed to be stronger with the basketball.
On Drew Neitzel and Raymar Morgan...
I think that a lot of times when you think about a game and one player that is critical to a team, you tend to focus on him. Certainly (Drew) Neitzel is that guy for their team. But usually you have a player or two who can have an outstanding game. I thought (Raymar) Morgan was tremendous. He's a very good basketball player. He's good all around, he can step out, he can post, he got on the glass. I thought he made some savvy plays. I thought Neitzel was really crafty with it, not forcing shots in the second half and finding his teammates, and I thought Morgan was the beneficiary of that.
Michigan State Player Quotes
Michigan State junior guard Drew Neitzel
On the win...
You know its tough, we had that four-game losing streak. We were playing some tough teams and had some tough games, but we are a young team and just wanted to bounce back and looked forward to this Michigan game and just getting back on the right path.
On the play of Raymar Morgan...
I was a little fatigued, I'm not going to lie. Some of the shots were way off. This is the player of the game right here (Raymar Morgan). He carried us in the second half. I give him props.
Michigan State freshman forward Raymar Morgan
On his first in-state rivalry game...
It was a huge experience. I know how much it meant to the guys here from Michigan and we just wanted to go out and put it all on the line tonight.
On his strong second half...
I would just like to thank my teammates, they tried to get me involved in the second half. I was a little sluggish in the first half. Drew Neitzel, Maurice Joseph and Travis Walton really tried to get me the ball.