Post-Game Quote: Columbia
 
 
 

 

 
 

Nov. 15, 2013

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Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo

Opening statement...
I'm very disappointed. It's a game that you want to win, a game that you win ugly. I'm very disappointed in it. You go into a game after you get out-rebounded and you get out-rebounded again. I can stand going 0-7 from three, withstand some things, but it's a team that's reading their press clippings, listening to Twitter, team that's got to hope now that Kansas blows somebody out so they move them ahead of us because we proved tonight that we're not ready to handle any kind of success and that disappoints me. (Adreian) Payne played okay on one end, he did some pretty good things. I really thought (Keith) Appling did an incredible job defensively. That kid is a heck of a player, heck of a shooter, (Grant) Mullins, and Keith did a great job on him and if somebody would have made a shot, Keith would have had 10 assists, so I think those two guys I felt played decent. And I thought (Travis) Trice was okay and Alvin Ellis came in and, having not practiced with anything but the scout team, I thought did a pretty good job. Our big guys we still got some work to do, our perimeter guys just looked like they were satisfied with winning a game, one game, and that's disappointing. So I'll take questions and get to work.

On team's practice the day before the game...
When you have a one-day prep like this, fairness to the players, it's hard. They got Wednesday off because we don't want to injury anybody for the NCAA, we've got to take our days off. It was a tough one-day prep, in all fairness to the players, but at the same time we worked on our rebounding and we just didn't get anything out of certain guys. (Denzel) Valentine struggled and (Branden) Dawson rebounded a little bit. (Matt) Costello struggled, and we went awfully small at times because we had so many guys that struggled. I just didn't like, more than anything, I didn't like the heart of our guys and I don't say that very often. It's a good learning lesson. We haven't practiced very well the last couple of days to be honest with you. The day before Kentucky we did, two days before that, and we didn't yesterday. There's only so much you can do before a game, especially in this era of people where we kind of teach everybody not to work hard.

On Columbia's defense...
We didn't work a lot on our man, but we've done it a lot before. I mean, we had shots, we missed shots. We had that 9-0 lead and we subbed a lot of guys, so I think I've got to take some blame for that too. That's not the way we planned it, it's the way it happened, and it kind of took the wind out of our sails. I'm sure it'll be 20% on the players and 80% on me, so I'm going to take most of the blame because I'm the one that's supposed to have them ready to play. I'm the one that's supposed to, you know, rebounding here is a religion, and maybe this team wants to change that, so I've got to make sure that doesn't happen.

On the Influence of media and was your team's performance a surprise...
It surprised me, because I just didn't think that the character of these guys was like that. You know it's one game, and we lost to Wright State when we won the national championship. I'm a big boy, I can understand things, and I've been through a lot of things, but I just didn't like the way we responded to anything. I didn't like the way we responded to the challenge of one of the more embarrassing rebounding nights. There were a lot of effort-related things, loose balls we didn't come up with; we're up three late in the game and a guy goes in and shoots an air ball with thirty seconds left on the shot clock. We seemed a little selfish and this is not a selfish team but that means we didn't respect our opponents, we didn't respect the game, and we really deserved to get beat. Then again, once in a while you've got to win a game when you deserve to get beat. Maybe that's the mark of a decent team. We haven't proven enough to be considered a great team. We're a doggone good team with a long, long way to go.

Columbia Head Coach Kyle Smith

Opening Statement...
It was a really good basketball game. It was great for our program to have the opportunity to play Michigan State, the number 2, probably number 1, team in the country. Our guys really followed their game plan, did a great job and gave ourselves a chance, but we just weren't able to. We knew we were going to have to make some big plays late to have a chance to get that done but didn't work out and hopefully we'll get better from this.

On the game plan for playing a team of this caliber...
Survive. We saw enough to what they did to their exhibition teams. We came in here and their transition is really impressive. It always is. I actually was just a little scared coming in. They hurt us tonight, to be honest, but I knew we'd have to run a little more offense than we'd like to just to keep them on their heels and really make them defend. If that thing gets going up and down they're hard to defend, especially with the emphasis on officiating, like they get in a `transition 1-on-1' situation they're really hard to stop.

On the moral victory of staying competitive...
We take the fact that we came in here and we competed. I'm sure with a lot of teams on the road with college basketball, you know with 18 and 20 year olds, we have a lot of young guys so just the fact that we were competitive will, I think, help us moving forward. The answer you have to guard against is the fact that we'll go back home and will be "Wow, you did great!" but the results aren't what you want. You play to win. We try to compete and win. But the moral victory is that we were competitive, and I expected that. Our guys bring a good effort.

On the environment and shot clock violations...
They are the best coached fans I've ever seen. They duped us. They duped us on a backwards count, or whatever, I think in the first half they counted down with 8 on the clock they counted down 5, then with 3. I go "Gosh dang they got us one." I think my one guy had a brain freeze because he was right in front of me and there's like 4 on the clock and I was like "Take a look." I thought he was duping the guy and was just going to jab and shoot it and then the thing went off and I was like "Well, oh well." And it was loud, it was loud and it's hard to simulate that, let's just leave it at that. But like I said, if we are ever going to get to where we'd like to be we're going to get in some of those environments.