Jan. 29, 2011
The Opening Tip
Michigan State hosts Indiana as former Spartan assistant Tom Crean brings his Hoosiers into Breslin Center. The Spartans are looking to snap a three-game losing streak, while the Hooisers are coming off their first win over a Top 25 team during Crean's coaching tenure. MSU has won 15 straight vs. Indiana in Breslin Center.
The Starting Five
1. Playing The Best
Michigan State arguably has played the most difficult schedule in the nation this season. According to the ESPN.com Inside RPI, MSU's strength of schedule is ranked No. 4. The Spartans lead the nation in games played against the Inside RPI Top 25 (8 - tied with Marquette) and Top 100 (15). Five non-conference opponents lead either their conference or division (Duke, Texas, Oakland, Washington, Bowling Green). MSU's opponent winning percentage of .668 is second best in the nation, trailing only Tennessee (.695). (Through Jan. 28)
2. Big Ten Defense
In conference games, MSU ranks fourth in the Big Ten in field-goal percentage defense, holding opponents to .442 shooting from the field. In the last three games, however, Illinois, Purdue and Michigan have shot .538 from the field, including .480 from 3-point range, raising MSU's field-goal percentage defense from .393 to its current mark. MSU ranks second in the league in blocks (5.63 bpg) and third in steals (6.25 spg) in league games.
3. Limiting Turnovers
The Spartans average 14.3 turnovers per contest. It's an area, however, where MSU has shown improvement lately as the Spartans have committed 11 turnovers or fewer in seven of the last 11 games, averaging 11.4 in that stretch. MSU is averaging just 11.4 turnovers in conference action. MSU is 7-2 when the opponent commits more turnovers or turnovers are equal and 5-6 when it has more turnovers than the opponent.
4. It's All About Boardwork
This year, Michigan State has out-rebounded 13 of 20 opponents, including 12 of the last 16, posting a +4.2 margin. The Spartans are 9-4 when out-rebounding their opponent, and 3-4 when failing to do so. In conference games, MSU ranks second in the Big Ten with a +4.3 margin. MSU has led the nation in rebounding margin in each of the last two seasons, posting a +9.3 margin in 2009 and a +8.6 margin in 2010. The Spartans have led the nation in rebounding margin in four of the last 11 years. MSU has led the Big Ten in rebounding margin in 11 of the last 13 years. In the Tom Izzo era, MSU has out-rebounded 409 of 530 opponents (.772), posting a 323-86 (.790) mark in those games.
5. He's Back
Kalin Lucas tore his left Achilles in the second round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament. He spent the summer rehabbing daily for hours on end and is slowly getting back to the form of a two-time All-Big Ten performer. He is averaging team bests in both scoring (15.1 points) and minutes (30.8 minutes), and has scored in double figures in 10 of his last 11 games, including a 27-point effort vs. Michigan, a personal best for a league contest.
MSU vs. Indiana Notes
Indiana leads the all-time series with Michigan State, 64-46, although MSU owns a 33-21 advantage in East Lansing, including 15 straight wins in the Breslin Center. Tom Izzo is 16-10 in his career against Indiana.
Tom Crean (Central Michigan, '89) is 217-152 in his 12th season as a Division I head coach, including 27-56 in his third season at Indiana. Prior to his arrival in Bloomington, Crean spent nine seasons as head coach at Marquette. In 2002-03, he guided Marquette to a 27-6 record, a Conference USA regular-season championship and a Final Four appearance. Prior to becoming the head coach at Marquette, Crean was an assistant for four years (1995-99) under Coach Tom Izzo at Michigan State. While Crean was at MSU under Izzo, the Spartans went 88-41, won two Big Ten regular-season titles and appeared in the 1999 Final Four. Before working for Coach Izzo, Crean coached one season at Pittsburgh (1994-95) and four seasons at Western Kentucky (1990-94) as an assistant. Crean's first assistant position came at MSU in 1989-90, when he worked under Jud Heathcote as the Spartans won the Big Ten Championship and advanced to the Sweet 16.
The Last Meeting
Michigan State defeated Indiana, 72-58, on Feb. 16, 2010, in Bloomington. MSU shot 63.0 percent in the first half, and did not allow an Indiana field goal over the final 10:15 of the first half to take a 40-30 halftime lead. The Hoosiers stayed in the game, by hitting 13-of-14 free throws in the first half. The Spartans were nearly as accurate in the second half, hitting 55.6 percent, for a game total of 59.3 percent. By contrast, Indiana shot just 34.9 percent for the game. Draymond Green led four Spartans in double figures with 14 points off the bench. Verdell Jones III led all scorers with 20 points for Indiana.
The Last Meeting In East Lansing
Michigan State defeated Indiana, 75-47, on Feb. 7, 2009, in East Lansing. MSU used a 10-0 run early in the second half to turn a three-point lead into a comfortable 13-point margin. Draymond Green established season highs with 15 points and 12 rebounds, while Chris Allen led MSU with 16 points. Verdell Jones III led IU with 13 points. Defensively, MSU held IU to just 3-of-16 shooting from 3-point range.
Indiana forward Tom Pritchard was a prep teammate of Delvon Roe's at St. Edward ... Indiana's second-leading scorer Verdell Jones III has sat out the last two games due to inflamation in his right knee, while Maurice Creek, IU's fourth-leading scorer, is out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his right patella ... Nine different Hoosiers have started a game this season.
Gm. 20 Notes Michigan 61 - Michigan State 57
* Kalin Lucas' 27 points were a personal best for a Big Ten game. With the 27 points he jumped to eighth place in MSU career scoring.
* In the first half, Michigan made 6-of-12 3-point field goals, compared to just 1-of-6 for MSU.
* MSU had just two points off the bench, a season-low for the Spartans.
* Durrell Summers recorded his first double-double of the season, scoring 13 points and grabbing a season-high 10 rebounds.
MSU Basketball Notes
Tough Non-Conference Slate
During the non-conference schedule, Michigan State played five teams that are ranked in the Associated Press Top 25. MSU's four non-conference losses have come to teams with a combined record of 71-9 (through Jan. 28) and that are all currently ranked in the Top 10 of the AP Top 25.
Becoming A Defensive Stopper
Delvon Roe has turned himself into one of the premier defenders in the Big Ten and an early favorite for Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year honors. A combination of strength, great feet and quickness allow him to defend on the interior or the perimeter. In the Big Ten, he's drawn the assignment against three of the league's top four scorers, Jon Leuer, John Shurna and JaJuan Johnson. In two games, he's held Shurna to 8.5 ppg on 3-of-21 shooting, including blocking five shots in the second meeting. Against Leuer, Roe limited the talented Badger to 10 points on 3-of-9 shooting. Johnson scored 20 points, but most came when Roe was not guarding him. A closer look at the games shows the following results by the premier inside scorers when being guarded by Roe: Shurna (2 games) - 5 points (2-of-12 FG); Leuer - 6 points (2-of-6 FG); Johnson - 7 points (2-of-7 FG).
Freshman guard Keith Appling is rounding into a standout freshman, both offensively and defensively. He's started 10 of the last 11 games for the Spartans, averaging 6.8 points and 24.1 minutes. He's also shooting .500 from the field, including .438 from 3-point range, in his starts. He scored a season-high 19 points in MSU's home overtime win against Northwestern, scoring five straight points in the extra stanza. Defensively, he's proving to be a stopper on the perimeter. For example, he helped limit Penn State's Talor Battle to 13 points on 3-of-14 shooting.
Home Sweet Home
During Tom Izzo's career as head coach, the Spartans are 216-28 (.885) at home, including 193-19 (.910) over the last 14 years.
Starting Lineup Shakeups
Michigan State has used six different starting lineups this season, compared to 19 last season. The lineup of Durrell Summers, Kalin Lucas, Keith Appling, Draymond Green and Delvon Roe has started seven of eight Big Ten games. Lucas is the only Spartan to start every game this season.
Michigan State's top three scorers (Kalin Lucas - 15.1 ppg, Durrell Summers -13.9 ppg and Draymond Green - 13.0 ppg) are all from the state of Michigan. The trio combines for 41.5 points per game. Green is a Saginaw native, while Lucas and Summers are from Detroit. They are joined in the starting lineup by another Michigan native, freshman Keith Appling, the 2010 Michigan Mr. Basketball Award winner from Detroit.
Moving Up The Scoring Chart
Kalin Lucas ranks eighth in MSU career scoring with 1,719 points. The Spartan senior needs 59 points to pass Terry Furlow (1,777 points) for seventh place and 132 points to pass Sam Vincent (1,851 points) for sixth place in MSU history.
Spartans In January
Over the last few years, Michigan State has been extremely successful in the month of January. Since 2007-08, the Spartans are 26-6 in the first month of the calendar year. Michigan State was a perfect 9-0 in 2010 and 7-1 in 2008 and 2009. For his career, Tom Izzo is 88-38 (.698) in January.
Holding Down Top Scorers
Michigan State has done a solid job defensively on three of the league's top scorers. In two games, MSU has held Northwestern's John Shurna, currently averaging 19.3 ppg, to 8.5 ppg on 3-of-21 shooting. MSU held Penn State's Talor Battle, averaging 20.5 ppg, to 13 points on 3-of-14 shooting. The Spartans limited Wisconsin's Jon Leuer, averaging 19.2 points, to 10 points on 3-of-9 shooting. Delvon Roe deserves much of the credit, as he was the primary defender on both Shurna and Leuer. In the second game vs. Northwestern, Roe tied his career high with five blocks. On the perimeter, freshman Keith Appling has emerged as a defensive force.
Solid Defensive Effort
Michigan State is turning in a strong defensive effort this season, holding teams to 66.7 points per game and allowing opponents to shoot just 41.4 percent from the field, including 36.6 percent from 3-point range. MSU has held seven opponents below 40 percent and just eight have topped 45 percent, including just three above 50 percent, as MSU has out-shot its opponent in 13 of 20 contests. Statistically, MSU ranks second in blocks (5.05 bpg) and fourth in the conference in steals (7.40 spg), while Draymond Green leads the league in steals (1.80 spg).
MSU's Mr. Everything
Junior Draymond Green is one of the nation's most versatile players. He leads the team in rebounding (8.6 rpg) steals (1.8 spg), and assists (4.1 apg), ranks second in blocks (1.3 bpg), and 3-point field-goal percentage (.418) and third in scoring (13.0). Green leads the Big Ten in steals, while ranking third in rebounding, 10th in assists, 11th in blocks and 13th in 3-point field-goal percentage. In seven games this season, Green has led MSU in both rebounding and assists. Green is MSU's active leader with 14 double-doubles in his career, including six this season. He's led MSU in rebounding in 14 games, assists in 10 games, and scoring in four games. He was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Jan. 17, after averaging 21.0 ppg and 8.5 rpg in two overtime victories.
Lucas In Exclusive Club
With 1,719 career points and 517 career assists, Kalin Lucas is part of an exclusive club. He is just the fourth Spartan to total 1,500 career points and 500 career assists, joining Scott Skiles (2,145 pts., 645 asts.), Mateen Cleaves (1,541 pts., 816 asts.) and Drew Neitzel (1,534 pts., 582 asts.).
Michigan State ranks second in the Big Ten in all games with 5.05 blocks per game. In conference action, MSU also ranks second with 5.63 blocks per game, thanks in part to a 12-block effort at Northwestern. The 12 blocks rank as the second-greatest single-game total in school history. Freshman guard Keith Appling blocked five shots in the first game against the Wildcats, equaling the fourth-best single-game total in school history, and the best ever for a Spartan guard, while Delvon Roe blocked five shots in the second game vs. NU. Delvon Roe leads the Spartans with 27 blocks, followed by Draymond Green with 25.
Spartans From Distance
Michigan State is shooting .373 from 3-point range this season, ranking seventh in the Big Ten. Four different active Spartans have knocked down 22 or more 3-pointers led by Durrell Summers with 46. Keith Appling is shooting a team-best .423 from 3-point range, as all four Spartans hitting 22 or more threes are shooting 39 percent or better (Green - .418, Summers - .404, Lucas - .391). As a team, MSU ranks fifth in the Big Ten with 7.20 3-pointers per game, after finishing last in the conference last season (5.1).
MSU's Detroit Duo
Michigan State's senior duo of Kalin Lucas and Durrell Summers, both from Detroit, rank one-two on the Spartans in scoring. Lucas (15.1 ppg) and Summers (13.9 ppg) combine to average 29.0 points per game. The two guards have been AAU teammates since middle school.
Durrell From Downtown
Durrell Summers leads the Spartans in 3-point field goals made (46) and attempted (114), while ranking third in percentage (.404). Summers has made four or more three pointers in five of the last 13 games and three or more in eight of the last 13. He ranks sixth in the Big Ten in 3-point field goals made per game (2.30). His 46 made 3-pointers is a personal best for a single season.
Big Ten Strength
Six different Big Ten teams are currently ranked in the Associated Press Top 25, including Ohio State (No. 1), Purdue (No. 12), Minnesota (No. 16), Wisconsin (No. 17), Illinois (No. 20) and Michigan State (No. 25). The Big Ten (6) trails only the BIG EAST (7) for number of ranked teams. The last time that MSU played five different ranked schools during league play came during the 1999 season when the Spartans played six different ranked league opponents. Last season, MSU played six games against four ranked league opponents.
In 2009-10, seven Spartans averaged more than 20 minutes per game, while nine averaged 7.2 minutes per contest. This season, nine different active Spartans have averaged 8.1 minutes or more. MSU's bench is out-scoring opponents' reserves by 6.1 points per game (20.1 ppg-14.0 ppg), out-scoring the opponents' bench in 13 of 20 games this season.
Summers Reaches 1,000
Durrell Summers became the 41st player to top 1,000 career points with his 21-point effort vs. Tennessee Tech. With 1,197 points for his career, he ranks 27th in MSU history, needing 16 points to pass Ken Redfield and Kirk Manns (1,212 points) for 25th and 46 to pass Stan Washington for 24th (1,242 points) for 24th.
Dealing With Injury
One of the storylines for the 2010-11 Spartans will be how they deal with injuries and how different players battle back from injury. Many different players missed significant time in the offseason due to injury. Most notably, Kalin Lucas is attempting to come back from an Achilles injury suffered in the second round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament against Maryland. Shortly after the season concluded in April, Delvon Roe had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his knee. Garrick Sherman had screws removed from his foot, left over from a high school injury. Freshman center Adreian Payne separated his shoulder late in his high school senior season and missed several months. Fellow freshman Russell Byrd suffered a broken foot in May, and when the foot never fully healed, he underwent a second surgery in early October. Austin Thornton suffered a back injury that kept him out of action for several weeks. Even Durrell Summers suffered a mild knee sprain and missed an opportunity to work with the USA Basketball Select Team.
Quite A Class Already
Although they have played just three-plus seasons, Spartan seniors Kalin Lucas, Durrell Summers and Mike Kebler have won 98 games in their careers. That total ties for the seventh winningest class in school history with the 2008 class. With three more wins, the 2011 class will tie the 2003 class for sixth with 101 wins. If the Spartans win 29 games this season, they will equal the 2001 class (115) as the most successful group in school history.
In The Rankings
Michigan State is currently ranked No. 25 in the Associated Press Top 25. Ten different Spartan opponents are ranked in at least one of the two polls, including Ohio State (1 AP/1 USA Today), Duke (3/3), Connecticut (5/5), Texas (7/8), Syracuse (t-9/10), Purdue (12/12), Minnesota (16/18), Wisconsin (17/15), Washington (18/17) and lllinois (20/21).
Sherman Hits The Mark
Garrick Sherman is shooting a strong .667 from the field this season. Since opening the season with a 3-of-6 effort, Sherman has hit 29 of his last 42. At one point, he connected on 10 straight shots this season.
Acting The Part
November 16 proved to be an especially busy day for Delvon Roe. At 7:30 p.m., the theatre major played the role of "Charles the Wrestler" in William Shakespeare's "As You Like It" put on by the MSU Department of Theatre at the Wharton Center. At 10 p.m., he resumed his normal role of starting power forward for the Spartans, playing one of his best games at MSU, recording 15 points, five rebounds and six assists. Roe also performed on stage on Nov. 17 and 18 prior to leaving for Maui. Feeling his healthiest since before injuring his knee in the first game of his senior year of high school, Roe is averaging 7.1 points and 5.7 rebounds on the season.
Seniors Kalin Lucas and Durrell Summers have been named preseason candidates for the John R. Wooden and Naismith Awards. Lucas is also a candidate for the Cousy Award, presented to the nation's top point guard.
Spartans In The NBA
Five former Spartans are currently on NBA rosters, including Charlie Bell (Golden State Warriors), Shannon Brown (Los Angeles Lakers), Morris Peterson (Oklahoma City Thunder), Zach Randolph (Memphis Grizzlies) and Jason Richardson (Orlando Magic). Brown is a key reserve guard for the Lakers and has been a major contributor on back-to-back NBA Championship squads. Randolph was selected as a reserve for the 2010 NBA All-Star Game. Richardson has averaged more than 18 points per game over the course of his 10-year career.
The Book On Tom Izzo
In his 16th year, Tom Izzo (Northern Michigan, '77) is 376-154 (.709), and 178-80 (.690) in the Big Ten, as the coach of the Michigan State basketball program. He ranks as the winningest coach in Michigan State history, having passed his mentor Jud Heathcote with his 341st career victory on Nov. 28, 2009 . In his 15 seasons as a head coach, Izzo has won National Coach of the Year honors four times, including the Clair Bee Award in 2005 and NABC honors in 2001. In 1999, Izzo was named National Coach of the year by Basketball Times, while earning similar honors from The Associated Press, Basketball News and the USBWA in '98. He earned Big Ten Coach of the Year honors in 1998 and 2009.
Among The Big Ten's Best
Tom Izzo's .690 winning percentage in Big Ten games ranks second all-time among league coaches with at least 10 years of service, behind former Indiana coach Bob Knight (.700) and ahead of Purdue's Ward Lambert (.685). In all games, Knight ranks first at .734, followed by Wisconsin's Walter Meanwell (.712), Izzo (.709) and Lambert (.709). With 178 conference victories, Izzo ranks seventh all-time.
Izzo Among Best Ever
Through his first 15 seasons, Tom Izzo won 364 games, ranking seventh in college basketball history for most wins by a college coach in his first 15 years.
Izzo's Coaching Tree
Five current Division I head coaches all served as assistants to Tom Izzo, including Jim Boylen (Utah), Tom Crean (Indiana), Brian Gregory (Dayton), Stan Heath (South Florida) and Doug Wojcik (Tulsa). Mike Garland served as head coach at Cleveland State for three seasons and Stan Joplin, an assistant during Izzo's first season, spent 12 seasons as head coach at Toledo.