Feb. 4, 2011
The Opening Tip
Michigan State is on the road again for the fourth time in its last six games as it prepares to face Wisconsin for the second time this season. In the first meeting, the Spartans used a late rally to force overtime and eventually defeat the Badgers. This game is the ninth the Spartans will play against a team ranked at the time of the contest, including its third in the last four road games.
The Starting Five
1. He's Back And Getting Stronger
It's been a long rehab process since tearing his left Achilles in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, but Kalin Lucas is slowly returning to the form of a two-time All-Big Ten performer. The Cousy Award finalist is averaging team bests in both scoring (15.6 points) and minutes (31.3 minutes), and has scored in double figures in 12 of his last 13 games, averaging 16.7 points in that stretch. In his last three games, Lucas is averaging 23.3 points and 36.7 mpg, playing a possible 110 of 125 minutes.
2. A Tale Of Two Defenses
Through the first five conference games, MSU was holding opponents to .393 shooting from the field, including .353 from 3-point range. In the last five games, conference opponents are shooting .535, including .475 from behind the arc. In all conference games, MSU ranks eighth in the Big Ten in field-goal percentage defense (.461). MSU ranks second in the league in blocks (5.30 bpg) and is tied for the lead in steals (6.20 spg) in league games.
3. 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), assists (4.0 apg) and 3-point field-goal percentage (.419), ranks second in blocks (1.2 bpg), and third in scoring (13.2). Green leads the Big Ten in steals, while ranking third in rebounding, 10th in assists, and 11th in blocks and 3-point field-goal percentage. In eight games this season, Green has led MSU in both rebounding and assists. Green is MSU's active leader with 15 double-doubles in his career, including seven this season. He's led MSU in rebounding in 16 games, assists in 11 games, and scoring in four games. Over the last seven games, Green is averaging 16.3 points, shooting .449 from the field and .444 from 3-point range.
4. Limiting Turnovers
The Spartans average 14.1 turnovers per contest. It's an area, however, where MSU has shown improvement lately as the Spartans have committed 11 turnovers or fewer in eight of the last 13 games, averaging 11.5 in that stretch. MSU is averaging just 11.6 turnovers in conference action. MSU is 8-2 when the opponent commits more turnovers or turnovers are equal and 5-7 when it has more turnovers than the opponent.
5. Delvon's Block Party
With 94 blocks for his career, Delvon Roe ranks fourth in MSU career history, trailing only Drew Naymick (134), Matt Steigenga (97) and Ken Johnson (96). With 30 blocks for the season, he needs two more to tie Matt Steigenga (1991, 32) for 10th on the MSU single-season chart, three to tie Idong Ibok (2007, 33) for ninth and five to tie Kevin Wills (1983, 35), George Papadakos (1988, 35) and himself (2010, 35) for sixth.
MSU vs. Wisconsin Notes
Michigan State leads the all-time series with Wisconsin, 69-59. The Badgers, however, own a 42-22 advantage in games played in Madison. The home team has won the last 11 games played on a college campus.
Bo Ryan (Wilkes, `69) is 616-190 in his 27th season as a collegiate head coach, including 233-87 in his 10th year at Wisconsin. Prior to his arrival in Madison, Ryan coached at UW-Milwaukee for two years (1999-2001) and at UW-Platteville for 15 seasons (1984-99), winning four Division III National Championships.
The Last Meeting
Michigan State rallied from a nine-point deficit in the final three minutes to force overtime and emerge with a 64-61 victory over Wisconsin on Jan. 11, 2011, in East Lansing. Wisconsin led by as many as 12 points in the first half, and held a 53-44 advantage with 2:37 remaining. The Spartan spurt started with a Draymond Green 3-pointer and a Kalin Lucas free throw. Delvon Roe then stole the ball at midcourt and Keith Appling scored on a dunk in transition to pull within three points. Korie Lucious capped the comeback with a 3-pointer from in front of the Spartan bench. During the stretch, MSU's defense forced three missed shots and four Badger turnovers. Draymond Green then scored MSU's first eight points in overtime. With the score tied at 61, Lucas made one of two free throws with 29 seconds remaining. Jordan Taylor then missed a potential game winner and Lucas sealed the win with two free throws with two seconds left. Green led MSU with 26 points and nine rebounds, while Lucas added 17 points and six assists. Taylor led Wisconsin with 21 points, while Keaton Nankivil hit 5-of-6 3-pointers en route to 17 points.
The Last Meeting In Madison
Wisconsin defeated Michigan State, 67-49, on Feb. 2, 2010, in Madison, Wis. The Badgers were hot early and surged to a 38-23 lead at the half, shooting 55.6 percent from the field. MSU pulled within eight in the second half, but could not get any closer, shooting just 37.0 percent from the field. Jason Bohannon led Wisconsin with 19 points, while Jordan Taylor added 17. Durrell Summers was the only Spartan in double-figures with 11. Kalin Lucas suffered an ankle injury midway through the second half that would force him to miss the following game as well. Wisconsin held a 17-4 advantage in points off turnovers.
Jon Leuer and Jordan Taylor are the top scoring tandem in the Big Ten, averaging a combined 38.5 points per game ... Wisconsin leads the nation in turnovers, committing just 7.8 per contest ... The Badgers lead the Big Ten and rank third nationally in scoring defense (56.1 ppg) ... Freshman Josh Gasser recorded Wisconsin's first ever triple-double at Northwestern this year.
Gm. 22 Notes Iowa 72 - Michigan State 52
* Derrick Nix scored a career-high 12 points.
* Iowa shot 65.5 percent in the first half, compared to 24.1 percent for MSU.
* At one point in the first half, the Hawkeyes made 10 consecutive shots, and 15-of-16 from the field.
* MSU held a 16-8 edge on the offensive glass, leading to a 12-2 advantage in second chance points.
* Iowa turned 17 Spartan turnovers into 30 points.
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 75-13 (through Feb. 3) and that are all currently ranked in the Top 17 of the AP Top 25.
Playing The Best
Michigan State has played one of the most difficult schedules in the nation this season. According to the ESPN.com Inside RPI, MSU's strength of schedule is ranked No. 9. The Spartans have played seven games against the RPI Top 25, tied for fifth most in the nation, 10 games against the Inside RPI Top 50, ranking tied for third most, and 15 games against the Top 100, ranking tied for third most. Four non-conference opponents lead either their conference or division (Duke, Texas, Oakland, Bowling Green). (Through games of Feb. 3)
Michigan State is 3-0 in overtime games this season, with all three coming at home against league opponents. This is the first time since the 2003-04 season the Spartans have played in three or more overtime contests. It's the first time since 1981-82 that MSU has won three overtime games, and the first time ever in program history that MSU has recorded three overtime home wins.
Big Ten Road Success
Over the last three seasons, the Spartans are 16-7 in Big Ten road games. MSU established a school record with eight conference road wins in 2009, and followed with a 7-2 mark in 2010. Nine of the 16 wins were by double-figures, while five were by five points or less, including back-to-back one-point wins at Minnesota and Michigan in 2010.
Quite A Class Already
Spartan seniors Kalin Lucas, Durrell Summers and Mike Kebler have won 99 games in their careers. That total ranks as the seventh winningest class in school history with the 2008 class. With two more wins, the 2011 class will tie the 2003 class for sixth with 101 wins. The 2001 class is the winningest class in school history with 115 victories.
It's All About Boardwork
This year, Michigan State has out-rebounded 13 of 22 opponents, including 12 of the last 18, posting a +3.7 margin. The Spartans are 9-4 when out-rebounding their opponent, and 4-5 when failing to do so. In conference games, MSU ranks third in the Big Ten with a +3.3 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 532 opponents (.769), posting a 323-86 (.790) mark in those games.
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 12 of the last 13 games for the Spartans, averaging 5.9 points and 25.8 minutes. He's also shooting .433 from the field, including .385 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 and played some excellent defense on Indiana's Jordan Hulls down the stretch of MSU's overtime win.
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 nine of 10 Big Ten games. Lucas is the only Spartan to start every game this season.
Michigan State's top three scorers (Kalin Lucas - 15.6 ppg, Durrell Summers -13.7 ppg and Draymond Green - 13.2 ppg) are all from the state of Michigan. The trio combines for 42.5 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 1,762 points. The Spartan senior needs 16 points to pass Terry Furlow (1,777 points) for seventh place, 89 points to pass Sam Vincent (1,851 points) for sixth place and 152 to pass Jay Vincent (1,914 points) for fifth place in MSU history.
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 holding teams to 67.7 points per game and allowing opponents to shoot just 42.4 percent from the field, including 37.4 percent from 3-point range. MSU has held seven opponents below 40 percent and 10 have topped 45 percent, including just four above 50 percent, as MSU has out-shot its opponent in 13 of 22 contests. Statistically, MSU ranks second in blocks (4.95 bpg) and fourth in the conference in steals (7.27 spg), while Draymond Green leads the league in steals (1.82 spg).
Lucas In Exclusive Club
With 1,762 career points and 521 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 4.95 blocks per game. In conference action, MSU also ranks second with 5.30 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 30 blocks, followed by Draymond Green with 26.
Spartans From Distance
Michigan State is shooting .365 from 3-point range this season, ranking seventh in the Big Ten. Four different active Spartans have knocked down 23 or more 3-pointers led by Durrell Summers with 50. Draymond Green is shooting a team-best .419 from 3-point range, as all four Spartans hitting 23 or more threes are shooting 38 percent or better (Summers - .391, Appling - .390, Lucas - .387). As a team, MSU ranks tied for sixth in the Big Ten with 7.09 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 (15.6 ppg) and Summers (13.7 ppg) combine to average 29.3 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 (50) and attempted (128), while ranking second in percentage (.397). Summers has made four or more three pointers in five of the last 15 games and three or more in eight of the last 15. He ranks sixth in the Big Ten in 3-point field goals made per game (2.27). His 50 made 3-pointers are a personal best for a single season.
Big Ten Strength
Five different Big Ten teams are currently ranked in the ESPN/USA Today Top 25, including Ohio State (No. 1), Purdue (No. 10), Wisconsin (No. 18), Minnesota (No. 20) and Illinois (No. t-24). The Big Ten (5) 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.
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 1,220 points for his career, he ranks 25th in MSU history, needing 23 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.
In The Rankings
Ten different Spartan opponents are ranked in at least one of the two polls, including Ohio State (1 AP/1 USA Today), Texas (3/3), Duke (5/5), Connecticut (6/7), Purdue (11/10), Syracuse (17/17), Minnesota (18/20), Wisconsin (19/18), Washington (20/19) and lllinois (-/t-24).
Sherman Hits The Mark
Garrick Sherman is shooting a strong .673 from the field this season. Since opening the season with a 3-of-6 effort, Sherman has hit 30 of his last 43. 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 6.9 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 377-155 (.709), and 179-81 (.688) 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 .688 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 179 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.