MSU Spartans
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Men's Basketball

Mateen Cleaves was named an
AP Second Team All-American.

 
Spartans Ready for the Big Dance

Men's basketball opens 1998 NCAA tournament against Eastern Michigan

March 10, 1998

GAME No. 28-- vs. Eastern Michigan Thur. Mar. 12 Hartford, CT

MICHIGAN STATE PROBABLE STARTERS (20-7 overall; 13-3 Big Ten/t-1st)
F -- #13 ANTONIO SMITH (Jr., 6-8, 8.2 ppg, 8.9 rpg)
F -- #44 JASON KLEIN (Jr., 6-7, 11.9 ppg, 3.9 rpg)
F -- #34 ANDRE HUTSON (Fr., 6-8, 7.5 ppg, 5.2 rpg)
G -- #14 CHARLIE BELL (Fr., 6-3, 8.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg)
G -- #12 MATEEN CLEAVES (So., 6-2, 15.5 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 7.6 apg)

EASTERN MICHIGAN PROBABLE STARTERS (20-9 overall; 13-5 MAC/3rd West Div.) F -- #22 ALVIN HOWARD (Fr., 6-1, 2.2 ppg, 1.6 rpg) F -- # 4 JON ZAJAC (Sr., 6-7, 6.4 ppg, 6.0 rpg) C -- #45 NKECHI EZUGWU (Sr., 6-8, 8.0 ppg, 6.2 rpg) G -- # 3 DERRICK DIAL (Sr., 6-5, 20.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg) G -- #11 EARL BOYKINS (Sr., 5-5, 26.0 ppg, 5.7 apg)

GAME INFORMATION -- The Michigan State men's basketball team makes the school's 12th appearance in the NCAA Basketball Tournament this Thursday (March. 12) when it battles intrastate foe Eastern Michigan in the opening round. The Spartans enter the Tournament seeded #4 in the East Region while the Eagles claim the No. 13 seed. The winner of the MSU-EMU contest advances to the second round and will meet the winner of the Princeton (#5 seed) vs. UNLV (#12 seed) clash on Saturday (March 14). The Hartford Center (15,418) will serve as the site of the first two rounds and tipoff time will be announced at a later date. Other first-round matchups include North Carolina (No. 1 seed) vs. Navy (No. 16 seed) and UNC-Charlotte (No. 8 seed) vs. Illinois-Chicago (No. 9 seed).

COVERAGE -- The Spartans' opening-round game in the NCAA Tournament will be televised locally by WLNS-TV (Ch. 6). Consult your local listings as to what NCAA Tournament games will be televised in your area. All MSU basketball games can be heard on WJIM Radio (1240 AM/97.5 FM). Describing the play-by-play is Mark Champion while former Spartan head coach Gus Ganakas serves as analyst.

THE RECORDS -- MSU, ranked No. 15 by USA Today/ESPN (#12 last week) and No. 16 by the Associated Press (#12 last week) heads into the NCAA tournament with an overall record of 20-7 while finishing the Big Ten portion of the schedule with a 13-3 mark, good for a first-place tie with Illinois. The Spartans entered last week's Big Ten Tournament in Chicago, Ill., as the No. 1 seed, but were upset, 76-73, by Minnesota in the quarterfinals. In that game, MSU held a decisive 42-27 edge in the rebounding department, but was hampered by cold shooting from the floor, hitting on just 37.9 percent (22-of-58), while Minnesota finished 51.9 percent (27-of-52). After falling behind, 55-49, with 11:33 remaining, the Spartans battled back to tie the game at 57-57 with 10:12 left. However, a 10-0 Gopher spurt over the next 2:48 gave Minnesota a lead that MSU wasn't able to overcome. The Spartans had chances to tie the game, but a pair of three-point attempts in the waning moments went astray. Freshman Andre Hutson and sophomore guard Mateen Cleaves each tallied 13 points to lead the Spartan scoring attack while junior Antonio Smith grabbed a game-high 10 boards. MSU finished the year 12-3 at home and is, 8-4 in road/neutral contests.

Eastern Michigan takes a 20-9 overall mark into its bout against the Spartans. EMU, winners of eight of its last nine outings, is coming off a championship effort in the Mid-American Conference Championship, defeating Ball State, 93-92, in overtime in the semifinals and Miami of Ohio, 92-77, in the title game.

THE COACHES -- Michigan State is guided by head coach Tom Izzo (Northern Michigan '77), who is in his third season at the helm of the program. Izzo has a school and career record of 53-35. In games at the Breslin Center, Izzo has posted a record of 35-12, 18-23 in road/neutral affairs. This year's berth to the NCAA Tournament is his first as Spartan head coach. In his two previous seasons, he directed the Green and White to appearances in the NIT.

Eastern Michigan Head Coach Milton Barnes (Albion '79), is in second year as the head man of the Eagles' program and posts a school and career ledger of 42-19.

SERIES NOTES -- In a series that originated in 1900, Michigan State claims an all-time mark of 24-3 against Eastern Michigan. Thursday's matchup will be the first meeting between the two programs since Dec. 23, 1989, when the Spartans captured an 87-73 win at East Lansing.

MSU QUICK HITTERS -- Last Friday's loss to Minnesota marked the first time this season that the Spartans had dropped back-to-back games (MSU closed out the regular season with a 99-96 overtime loss to Purdue) ... MSU's 25 foul shots against Minnesota (3/6) tied a season high ... The Spartans' shot a season-low 18.2 percent (4-of-22) from three-point range in the Minnesota (3/6) contest ... MSU's 13 wins in league action tied it with the 1978-79 team for the second-highest total in school history behind the 1977-78 and 1989-90 teams, both with 15 victories ... MSU's 81.3 winning percentage in Big Ten games was the fourth-best in school history ... MSU's 20 wins marks the eighth time in school history that a Spartan team has reached or surpassed that victory total ... Since joining the Big Ten in 1950-51, MSU has either won outright or shared seven Big Ten titles ... The Spartans scored 70 or more points in 11 regular-season league contests this year compared to 1996-97's entire total of three ... The Spartans have registered 111 blocks after 27 games this year compared to last season's 29-game total of 70 ... MSU has 10 or more steals in eight (7-1) games this year ... Since the 1996-97 season, MSU has a 15-3 record when it has shot 70 percent or better from the charity stripe (7-2 in 1997-98) ... MSU is 16-2 this year when scoring 70 or more points ... The Spartans' eight wins on the road this year, betters last year's season total of four.

HUTSON PICKS UP THE PACE -- Freshman Andre Hutson has been a bright spot for the Spartans the past two games, averaging 17.0 points and 7.0 rebounds. The 6-foot-7 Hutson tallied a career-high 21 points vs. Purdue before sharing for team scoring honors with 13 points vs. Minnesota. In the last two contests, he is shooting 77.8 percent (14-of-18) from the field and 85.7 percent (6-of-7) from the foul line. Hutson has reached double-figure scoring in three of his last four outings.

SPARTANS LOOK TO REGAIN DEFENSIVE INTENSITY -- After allowing just four halves of 50 percent or better from the floor over an eight-game stretch (Jan. 21-Feb. 14), the Spartans have surrendered 50 percent or better from the floor in six of the last eight halves. Over the last four games, MSU has allowed an average of 74.3 points vs. its season average of 63.7.

WILEY AMONG SPARTANS' TOP SHOOTERS -- Entering the NCAA Tournament, senior center DuJuan Wiley stands second on the school's seasonal field goal percentage list. The 6-foot-9 Wiley has converted 72-of-108 from the floor, good for a mark of 66.7 percent. Wiley is within striking distance of the school's seasonal standard of 67.6 percent held by Ron Charles (1979-80).

MSU AND THE NCAA TOURNEY -- MSU will be participating in its 12th-ever NCAA Tournament and sixth during the decade of the 1990s. The Spartans' last appearance in the tourney came in 1995 when it was the No. 3 seed in the Southeast Region in Tallahassee, Florida. MSU had a short-lived stay in the postseason that year, dropping a 79-72 opening-round decision to Weber State. MSU sports an all-time slate of 17-11 in NCAA Tournament contests.

MSU AND THE BOARDS -- Entering the NCAA Tournament, the Spartans have enjoyed an edge in 20 games this year. The Green and White have pulled down 10 or more boards than the opposition in 14 games and have outboarded its foes by 15 or more a total of 12 times. MSU stands 17-3 when holding an advantage on the glass this year. MSU finished the regular season No. 1 in the Big Ten in rebound margin in overall (+9.1) and finished tops in conference (+6.4) play. Under Tom Izzo, the Spartans have outrebounded 68 of 88 opponents and hold a 46-22 record when enjoying an edge in rebounding. TOP MSU DEFENSIVE SCORING AVERAGES (since 1952-53)

Year   Pts. All.
1981-82   59.9
1952-53   61.1
1978-79   62.6
1997-98   63.7
1995-96   64.2
1996-97   65.7
1977-78   65.8
1983-84   65.8
1957-58   66.1
1984-85   66.2

MSU AND THE BRESLIN CENTER -- MSU's loss to Purdue (3/1) leaves its all-time record at the Breslin Center to 109-27 (.801) since the facility opened in 1989 (49-7 vs. non-conference opponents, 60-20 in Big Ten contests). MSU has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in 74 games at the Breslin Center while allowing opponents to reach that mark on just 19 occasions.

QUICK FACTS -- Through 27 games, MSU is shooting 42.3 percent (352-of-832) from the floor in the first half and 48.2 percent (377-of-781) in the second half ... Opponents are shooting 40.5 percent (293-of-722) from the field in the first half and 40.8 percent (301-of-736) over the final 20 minutes of action ... In MSU's last five games, it is shooting 76.9 percent (80-of-104) from the foul line ... MSU is averaging 33.4 points in the first half of play (29.7 for opponents) and 40.6 points in the second half/overtime (33.9 for opponents) ... In 16 Big Ten games, MSU held the opposition to 31 percent from beyond the arc (No. 2 in 3 pt. FG% defense) ... In its seven losses, MSU has shot 40.9 percent from the floor (172-of-420) vs. 46.6 percent (557-of-1193) in the 20 victories.

MOST POINTS BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
96, vs. Purdue (3/1/98)
95, vs. Wright State (12/17/97)
90, vs. UIC (12/5/96)
89, vs. Cent. Michigan (11/28/97)
86, vs. Evansville (12/17/96)
85, vs. Cleveland St. (12/6/97)
84, vs. Ohio State (2/4/98)
84, vs. Indiana (1/28/98)
84, vs. Detroit (12/14/96)
FEWEST POINTS ALLOWED BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
40, Wisconsin (1/8/98)
41, Ohio State (2/7/96)
43, Kansas State (12/21/96)
45, E. Tennessee (11/25/96)
47, Wisconsin (2/21/98)
49, Wisconsin (3/1/97)
50, Geo. Washington (3/12/97)
50, Wisconsin (1/9/97)
50, Washington (3/13/96)
BEST FG% SHOOTING GAMES BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
58.2% vs. Wright State (12/17/97)
56.9% vs. Cent. Mich. (11/28/97)
56.3% vs. N'western (2/27/96)
56.1% vs. Illinois (3/6/96)
55.6% vs. Iowa (1/21/98)
54.5% vs. Kent (12/27/96)
53.6% vs. Kansas State (12/21/96)
53.1% vs. Wisconsin (3/1/97)
53.1% vs. Evansville (12/17/96)
53.1% vs. Illinois (1/6/96)
BEST DEFENSIVE FG% EFFORTS BY IZZO-COACHED TEAMS
23.8% by Kansas State (12/21/96)
24.6% by S. Florida (12/20/97)
27.9% by Wisconsin (1/8/98)
29.8% by E. Tennessee (11/25/96)
30.8% by Wisconsin (2/21/98)
31.1% by Wright State (12/17/97)
31.3% by Idaho State (12/30/95)
31.7% by Geo. Wash. (3/12/97)

MORSELS FOR MUSING -- MSU has won 23 of its last 24 games when holding the opposition to 60 or fewer points (12-1 in 1997-98) ... Under Izzo, MSU posts a 34-4 mark in such games ... MSU has attempted more free throws than the opposition on 14 occasions this year and posts an 11-3 mark in those affairs ... Since 1996-97, the Spartans are 14-2 when scoring 80-plus points (8-1 in 1997-98) ... Under Izzo, MSU is 44-7 when leading at halftime (15-1 this year) ... MSU has averaged 15.6 turnovers in its seven losses ... Through 27 games last season, MSU had recorded 131 three-point field goals compared to this year's effort of 160 ... MSU has shot 40 percent or better from three-point range on nine occasions this season (8-1) ... The Spartans have outscored the opposition in 37 out of 54 halves of basketball ... MSU has given up 50 percent or better from the floor in 16 halves of action this year while reaching that mark on 19 occasions ... MSU is 41-5 under Izzo when outshoting the opposition from the field ... The Spartans have held their opponents to less than 10 field goals in a half on 13 occasions this year.

MSU PLAYER NOTES

# 11-- Sophomore David Thomas posted four points and three boards in 11 minutes vs. Minnesota (3/6) ... Missed three games due to a sprained knee ligament suffered at Illinois (2/12) ... Missed three games earlier this year (Wright St., S. Fla., and East. Ill.) with a knee sprain ... Seven points (most since a 12-point night vs. Cleveland State on 12/6) and five boards in 18 minutes vs. Ohio State (2/4) ... Six rebounds in games vs. Penn State (1/24) and Indiana (1/28) ... Tallied a career-high 12 points vs. Cleveland State (12/6) and his five field goals tied his career high ... Has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in 12 games ... Played a career-high 33 minutes in the Temple contest ... Coca-Cola Classic All-Tournament after totaling 18 points and 20 boards ... First career double-double came against Gonzaga with 10 points and 10 boards (board total tying career high) ...10 boards against Central Michigan (11/28), tying him with Antonio Smith for game honors ... 10 points vs. UIC, hitting a then career-best five-of-six field goal attempts ... No. 4 on the team in rebounding (4.1 rpg).

#12 -- Sophomore Mateen Cleaves was named the Big Ten Conference's Player of the Year as selected by both the coaches and media ... Second-Team All-American as chosen by both Basketball Times and Basketball Weekly ... Leads the team in minutes (33.1 mpg), scoring (15.5 ppg), assists (7.6 apg) and steals (2.5 spg) ... Has 36 assists and just 10 turnovers in last five contests ... His 204 assists are fifth on MSU's and ninth on the Big Ten's seasonal lists ... 42-minute stint vs. Purdue (3/1) and notched 16 points, 10 assists (sixth double-figure game of the year) and four steals ... Totaled 124 assists in Big Ten play this season, good for the No. 5 spot on the conference's seasonal chart ... Came off the bench to notch 14 points vs. Wisconsin (2/21) ... Doled out 10 assists and registered a school-record nine steals (tying him for second place on Big Ten single-game chart) vs. Minnesota (2/14) ... Scored in double figures in his last four games (14.3 ppg) ... Named Big Ten Player of the week (2/2) for the second time this season in helping MSU to wins over Indiana (1/28) and Northwestern (1/31) ... Leads the Big Ten in assists in overall and finished No. 1 in league (7.75 apg) action ... His 7.75 assists per game average in league action is No. 2 on the Big Ten seasonal list ... No. 10 among Big Ten players in scoring for league outings (16.1 ppg) ... Has scored in double figures in 23 games this year ... Scored 32 of his career-high 34 points in the second half/overtime against Northwestern (1/31) while also racking up nine assists ... Established career bests in field goals (10) and three-point FGs (6) against the Wildcats ... Leads team in free throws (99) and is shooting 70.3% (19-of-27) from the foul line in his last seven outings ... 10 points along with a career-high 13 assists (tying the second-highest total in MSU history) vs. Indiana (1/28) ... Game-high 25 points vs. Penn State (1/24) ... Has five games of 20-plus points this year ... 14 points and 10 assists at Iowa (1/21) ... Named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week after helping MSU to wins vs. Minnesota (1/14) and Illinois (1/17) ... Totaled a then career-high 27 point (24 in the second half) against Illinois (1/17) ... Hit nine-of-16 field goal attempts vs. the Illini including a then career-best five treys ... Game-high 19-point performance, along with seven assists, at Minnesota (1/14) ... Dished out a game-high nine assists, vs. Wisconsin (1/8) ... 25 points along with a game-high eight assists against Purdue (12/30) ... Hit nine FGs against the Boilermakers ... Game-high 15 points vs. South Florida (12/20) and dished out 10 assists ... Six-of-nine from the field and posted a team-high 16 points vs. Wright State (12/17) ... Has led or shared for the team's scoring lead in a total of 14 contests ... No. 2 on squad in treys with 44 ... Coca-Cola Classic MVP after scoring 29 points and 19 assists against Central Michigan and Gonzaga ... A then career-high 11 assists against Gonzaga was the first time a Spartan had more than 10 assists in a game since Eric Snow's 11 vs. Wisconsin (3/11/95) ... Notched game-high 19 points and doled out eight assists vs. CMU .. Has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in nine contests ... Has 350 assists (No. 6 at MSU) in 56 career contests (6.2 apg) ... Has led or shared for MSU's lead in assists in 51 of 56 career outings (all 27 this season) ... Scored in double figures in 39 outings during his career (16 in '96-97).

MATEEN CLEAVES HIGH-SCORING GAMES
Date   Opponent   Pts.
1/31/98 N'western   34
1/17/98 ILLINOIS   27
1/24/98 PENN STATE 25
12/30/97 Purdue   25
12/13/97 DETROIT   21
2/15/97 Illinois   20
MATEEN CLEAVES' TOP ASSIST GAMES
Date   Opponent   Ast.
1/28/98 INDIANA   13
11/29/97 GONZAGA   11
3/ 1/98 PURDUE   10
2/14/98 MINNESOTA   10
1/21/98 Iowa   10
12/20/97 S. Florida 10
2/12/97 IOWA   10

#13 -- Junior Antonio Smith paces the team in rebounding (8.9 rpg) ... Ranked fourth in the Big Ten during the regular season in rebounding in overall play ... Finished No. 4 in the Big Ten in rebounds in league contests (8.9 rpg) ... 32 minutes vs. Minnesota (3/6) and finished with eight points along with a game-high 10 boards ... 12-point, game-high 12-rebound effort vs. Michigan (2/17) marked his seventh double-double of the year ... Averaging 8.5 points, shooting 46.7 percent from the floor (14-of-30) and averaging 8.0 boards in the last four games ... Sixth double-double of the season was a 10-point, game-high 12 board performance at Illinois (2/12) ... Hit six-of-11 field goal attempts and tied his career high with 17 points, while recording 12 boards, vs. Iowa (2/7) ... Has 14 career double-doubles ... No. 2 on the squad in minutes (29.7 mpg) ... Posted a 10-point, game-high 10 rebound effort vs. Indiana (1/28) ... Game-high 10 rebounds, eight points and a career-best four steals vs. Penn State (1/24) ... Has double-figure rebounding in a total of 14 games this year ... Game-high 11 boards at Minnesota (1/14) ... Paced MSU with a game-high 12 rebounds at Michigan (1/10) ... Finished Purdue game (12/30) with his second straight effort of 15 boards while chipping in nine points ... Solid effort vs. Eastern Illinois (12/27) with 14 points and 15 rebounds ... Picked off 10 boards, tying for team high, against South Florida (12/20) ... Second double-double of the year was a 13-point, 10 board (team high) effort vs. Detroit (12/13) ... Shot 50 percent or better from the floor on 11 occasions ... Has nine games of double-figure scoring this season ... Hit six field goals and totaled 12 points at Cleveland State (12/6) ... Has led or shared for MSU rebounding honors in 14 of last 18 and in a total of 19 games ... Notched first double-double of the year vs. ETSU (11/17) with 11 points and 10 boards ... 33 career contests of 10-plus boards and seven of 15-plus caroms.

ANTONIO SMITH'S HIGH REBOUND GAMES
Date   Opponent   Rebs.
3/8/97 INDIANA   19
2/22/97 PENN STATE   17
1/2/97 Indiana   16
12/30/97 Purdue   15
12/27/97 E. ILLINOIS 15
1/29/97 Purdue   15
12/14/96 Detroit   15
ANTONIO SMITH'S CAREER DOUBLE DOUBLES
Date   Opp.   Pts./Rebs.
2/17/98 MICHIGAN   12 /12
2/12/98 Illinois   10 /12
2/ 7/98 IOWA   17 /12
1/28/98 INDIANA   10 /10
12/20/97 E. ILLINOIS 14 /15
12/13/97 DETROIT   13 /10
11/17/97 E. TENNESEE 11 /10
3/ 8/97 INDIANA   10 /19
3/ 6/97 Minnesota   10 /14
2/26/97 Ohio State 10 /10
2/ 1/97 Michigan   12 /10
1/29/97 Purdue   17 /15
12/14/97 Detroit   13 /15
12/ 3/97 CLEVE STATE 16 /10

#14 -- Freshman Charlie Bell is No. 3 on the team in scoring (8.7 ppg) ... No. 3 on the team in boards (4.3 rpg) ... Three-of-five from the field and all six of his six of his charity tosses en route to 12 points (second high on the team) against Minnesota (3/6) ... Eight points and six boards vs. Wisconsin (2/21) ... Averaging 11.2 points and 5.8 boards in the last five contests ... 12 points, second high on the team, and a team-high nine boards in a career-long 35 minutes vs. Minnesota (2/14) ... Game-high 17 points (tying career high), hitting eight-of-15 field goal attempts vs. Indiana (1/28) ... Nine outings of double-figure scoring to his credit ... Shooting a team-best 79.0% (60-of-76) from the foul line ... Totaled 11 points and five rebounds in 32 minutes against Purdue (12/30) ... 12 points, tying for second highest on the team, vs. South Florida, and also grabbed nine rebounds vs. USF, tying his personal best ... Totaled 14 points vs. Wright State ... 33 minutes (second-longest stint) vs. Detroit (12/13) and finished with nine points ... Has at least one trey in 14 contests this year ... Registered 13 points vs. Cleveland State (12/6) ... Also paced the squad in rebounding vs. CSU with nine caroms, the first time a Spartan guard had led MSU in boards since Eric Snow grabbed six vs. Weber State in the 1995 NCAA Tournament ... No. 2 on the squad in scoring against CMU (11/28) with a then career-best 17 points ... Paced the team in scoring vs. ETSU (11/17) with 15 points while chipping in seven boards ... His point total marked the first time that a true frosh had led MSU in scoring in a season opener since Jay Vincent's 25 points vs. Central Michigan (11/28/77).

#30 -- Freshman Doug Davis missed the Purdue (3/1) game with a sprained ankle ... Dressed for Minnesota (3/6), but did not see any action ... Made his first start in the Wisconsin (2/21) game and played a career-long 19 minutes, finishing with three points and a pair of steals ... Has seen action in 23 games ... 15 minutes vs. Iowa (2/7) was his second-longest stint in a conference contest ... Solid effort at Ohio State (2/4), hitting all four field goal attempts and finishing with nine points (second-highest total as a Spartan) in 13 minutes ... Hit a trey with 8:35 left, giving MSU its first double-digit lead, and finished with three points in seven minutes at Iowa (1/21) ... Played 17 minutes vs. Wright State (12/17) and posted his first double-figure scoring effort of the year with 11 points ... Three treys vs. Wright State ... 13 minutes vs. ETSU (11/17) and scored eight points while dishing out three assists.

#34 -- Freshman Andre Hutson is averaging 20.4 minutes per game ... Is the team's No. 2 shooter from the floor, hitting 62.9% (78 of 124) of his attempts ... Went five-of-five from the field and tied for team honors in scoring with 13 points vs. Minnesota (3/6) ... Sank a career-high nine-of 13 field goal attempts and notched a career-best 21 points, along with a team-best seven boards, vs. Purdue (3/1) ... Saved a ball that was going out of bounds to Morris Peterson which resulted in a layup with 2.1 seconds left, forcing the overtime vs. the Boilermakers ... 10 points and six rebounds in 23 minutes vs. Michigan (2/17) ... Has shot 50 percent or better from the field in 13 of last 17 games ... Six (tying then career best)-of-eight from the floor and finished with 13 points, and also pulled down eight (second on the team) rebounds vs. Indiana (1/28) ... 11 points and seven boards at Michigan (1/10) ... Ten games of double-figure scoring effort this season ... 12 points vs. Wisconsin (1/8) and hit eight-of-nine charity tosses against the Badgers ... Shot 79.4 percent (31-of-39) from the foul line in league affairs ... Fine effort vs. Purdue (12/30), hitting six-of nine field goals en route to 13 points, good for No. 2 on the team, while chipping in eight rebounds ... Eight boards and scored eight points in 22 minutes vs. South Florida (12/20) ... Hit six-of-nine from the field and finished with 13 points at Cleveland State (12/6) ... Has shot 50 percent or better from the field in 20 contests ... Five-of-seven from the floor, finishing with 11 points, and snared a game-high nine boards in a season-long 30 minutes vs. Temple (12/4) ... No. 2 on the team in rebounding (5.2 rpg) ... Strong effort in the Coca-Cola Classic, shooting 69.2 percent from the floor -- averaging 11 points ... Team-high 13 points in the championship game vs. Gonzaga in 28 minutes ... Blocked three ETSU (11/17) shot attempts.

#42 -- Sophomore Morris Peterson has scored in double figures in nine of last 14 games ... Played a season-long 29 minutes vs. Purdue (3/1) and nailed seven-of-12 from the floor (two-of-three treys) and finishing with 16 points, his 11th double-figure scoring effort of the campaign ... 10 points and four rebounds vs. Michigan (2/17) ... Six-of-nine from the floor and finished with 14 points (second high on the team) against Iowa (2/7) ... Five-of-seven from the floor and finished with 11 points against Indiana (1/28) ... Tallied a career-high 20 points, hitting a career-best eight-of-11 field goal attempts at No. 10 Iowa (1/21) ... Connected on a season-high three treys vs. the Hawkeyes ... Missed three games (Temple, Cleveland State and Detroit) with a fractured bone in his right wrist ... Connected on four-of-eight from the field en route to 12 points vs. Illinois (1/17) ... No. 3 on the squad in three-point field goals (22) and has treys in 12 of last 16 performances ... 11 points vs. Minnesota (1/14) and finished with a season-high six caroms ... 11 points against Wright State, hitting five-of-seven from the floor ... Five-of-seven field goal attempts en route to a 10 points against Gonzaga (11/29) ... Has scored in double figures on 16 occasions in his career, five of which came last year ... Eleven of his double-figure scoring efforts have come at home.

43 -- Sophomore A.J. Granger has come off the bench in all 27 games and is averaging 12.4 minutes ... Twenty-one minute stint at Wisconsin (2/21) was his longest of the year and second-longest of his career ... Gave MSU an offensive boost off the bench at Illinois (2/12), hitting three-of-six (two treys) from the floor in 19 minutes, and finishing a career-best nine points ... Hit a pair of field goals, including one trey, and finished with five points (four rebounds) against Illinois (1/17) ... Has scored in his last 10 contests ... Established career highs in field goals (4) and scored eight points in the Wright State (12/17) contest while playing 19 minutes... 16 minutes vs. Cleveland State (12/6) and grabbed a career-high six boards ... Has scored in 21 and has rebounds in 20 contests ... 18 minutes at UIC (11/21) and snatched five boards, tops among the subs, and tying his then personal best ... 13 minutes of action vs. ETSU (11/17) and and finished with five points and three rebounds.

ANTONIO SMITH'S HIGH REBOUND GAMES
Date   Opponent   Rebs.
3/8/97 INDIANA   19
2/22/97 PENN STATE   17
1/2/97 Indiana   16
12/30/97 Purdue   15
12/27/97 E. ILLINOIS 15
1/29/97 Purdue   15
12/14/96 Detroit   15
ANTONIO SMITH'S CAREER DOUBLE DOUBLES
Date   Opp.   Pts./Rebs.
2/17/98 MICHIGAN   12 /12
2/12/98 Illinois   10 /12
2/ 7/98 IOWA   17 /12
1/28/98 INDIANA   10 /10
12/20/97 E. ILLINOIS 14 /15
12/13/97 DETROIT   13 /10
11/17/97 E. TENNESEE 11 /10
3/ 8/97 INDIANA   10 /19
3/ 6/97 Minnesota   10 /14
2/26/97 Ohio State 10 /10
2/ 1/97 Michigan   12 /10
1/29/97 Purdue   17 /15
12/14/97 Detroit   13 /15
12/ 3/97 CLEVE STATE 16 /10

#44 -- Junior Jason Klein is No. 2 on the team in scoring (12.0 ppg) ... MSU's top scorer over a four-game stretch (2/14-3/1) including a 22-point afternoon vs. Purdue (3/1), his second-highest total as a Spartan ... Shooting 55.1% (16-of-29) from beyond the arc in the last five games ... 18-point, a team-high seven-rebound effort at Wisconsin (2/21) ... Has scored in double figures on 16 occasions this year ... Team-high 17 points vs. Michigan (2/17) and converted three treys ... Seven-of-14 (career high 5-of-8 treys) from the floor vs. Minnesota (2/14) and finished with a team-high 19 points in 33 minutes ... Finished Ohio State (2/4) game with a career-high 25 points, hitting 10-of-15 field goal attempts ... No. 8 in the Big Ten in three-point shooting percentage (.404) league contests and was No. 6 in overall play ... Came up with a team-high nine boards vs. Northwestern (1/31) ... A then career-high 17 point effort vs. Michigan (1/10) which included four three-pointers ... Led or shared for team's scoring lead in nine contests ... Hit six field goals (three treys) and finished with a team-high 15 points against Wisconsin (1/8) ... Tied for No. 5 in the league during regular season in treys made (2.42 pg) in overall action ... Posted a then career-high 16 points vs. Eastern Illinois (12/27) which included four treys ... Career-long 34 minutes vs. South Florida (12/20) and finished with nine points and a career-high 10 rebounds ... Totaled 11 points vs. Temple (12/4), tying him for team honors ... No. 1 on the squad in treys with 65, good for sixth place on MSU's seasonal list ... Coca-Cola Classic All-Tournament Team pick after scoring 21 points and grabbing 10 boards in the two games ... Has three or more treys in 13 outings ... Has two or more treys in 22 contests this year ... Thirty career games of two or more treys (five coming last year, three in '95-96) ... No. 4 on MSU's all-time list in treys with 102.

#55 -- Senior DuJuan Wiley totaled six points and two blocked shots vs. Minnesota (3/6) ... 10 points and tied his career high in blocks with four vs. Purdue (3/1) ... Shooting 68.1 percent (15-of-22) from the floor in his last seven games ... Blocked three shots vs. Michigan (2/17) ... Went five-of-six from the floor and tallied 11 points vs. Minnesota (2/14) in a career-long 24 minutes ... Four-of-four from the field, finishing with eight points and five boards in 23 minutes vs. Iowa (2/7) ... Eight points and blocked three shots vs. Ohio State (2/4) ... Five-of-seven from the floor in finishing with 10 points, along with three blocked shots, vs. Northwestern (1/31) ... Finished No. 3 in Big Ten in blocked shots in overall play (1.77 bpg) and finished third (1.81) in league play during regular season ... Has 12 blocks in his last five contests ... Fifteen games of two or more blocks including seven of last nine ... Four-of-six from the field and finished with eight points and five rebounds vs. Indiana (1/28) ... Big game vs. Penn State (1/24) with a career-best 15 points, hitting five (tying career best)-of-seven from the floor and all five from the foul line, along with six boards, in 23 minutes ... Five-of-five from the floor at Iowa (1/21) and finished with 10 points ... Eight double-figure scoring efforts this season ... Totaled a then career-high 12 points vs. South Florida (12/20) ... 22 minutes against Wright State (12/17) and scored 10 points while establishing a career best in rebounds with a team-leading eight ... Also blocked three shots against the Raiders ... Has scored in every game ... Four blocked shots vs. Cleveland State (12/6) ... First career start came vs. ETSU (11/17), playing 20 minutes while finishing with a six caroms and four blocked shots ... Has blocked shots in his last 14 and in 21 contests this season.

MSU YEAR-BY-YEAR RECORD AT THE BRESLIN CENTER 
        Overall        Big Ten
Year   Record Pct.  Record   Pct.
1989-90 14- 2 .875   8- 1   .888
1990-91 12- 2 .857   7- 2   .778
1991-92 13- 2 .867   7- 2   .778
1992-93  9- 5 .643   4- 5   .444
1993-94 12- 3 .800   7- 2   .778
1994-95 14- 1 .933   8- 1   .888
1995-96 10- 5 .667   6- 3   .667
1996-97 13- 4 .764   6- 3   .667
1997-98 12- 3 .800   7- 1   .875
Totals 109-27 .801  60-20   .750

ROAD PLAY HELPS MSU SUCCESS -- MSU's 6-2 Big Ten road mark (.750) was the best effort by a Spartan squad since the 1989-90 season when that team finished with a 7-2 mark (.778) on enemy courts en route to an overall effort of 15-3. The six conference road victories represented the most by an Izzo-coached team with his first two teams each winning three games on the road.

CAN IT BE COINCIDENCE ??? -- DuJuan Wiley has scored in double figures in eight games this year and MSU posts a 7-1 record when that has happened ... The Spartans claim a 9-2 slate when Morris Peterson reaches the double-figure mark in scoring ... That the Spartans are 12-3 this year when finishing with 15 or fewer turnovers ... That part of the reason that MSU captured a Big Ten co-championship was that it tied for the No. 1 spot in the Big Ten in steals (8.25 spg) while finishing No. 4 in blocked shots (3.94 bpg) among Big Ten squads after ranking 11th and 10th, respectively, last year in those categories ... That MSU is averaged 9.1 more points in league games this year vs. 1996-97 because it had 97 three-point field goals this season compared to 69 a year ago.

BET YOU DIDN'T KNOW THAT -- MSU is 9-1 this year when the opposition has more turnovers, 21-6 during Izzo's tenure as head coach ... The Spartans are 5-3 this season against Associated Press Top 25 teams ... MSU has allowed just 31 of its last 176 opponents to shoot 50 percent or better from the field ... That six of the seven losses inflicted upon the Spartans this season came to teams with 20 or more wins (Illinois-Chicago 22-5, Temple 21-8, Detroit 24-5, Michigan 23-8, Illinois, 22-9 and Purdue 26-7) ... Through Mar. 8, MSU's non-conference opponents had a combined record of 160-120 (.571) ... Antonio Smith has started the last 54 Spartan contests ... Smith has 676 career boards in 88 contests (7.7 rpg) ... In the last four games, MSU is averaging 12.5 turnovers, vs. its season average of 15.6 ... The Spartans finished the regular season No. 2 among Big Ten squads in field goal percentage defense (.403) in overall and finished No. 3 in league (.420) tussles ... MSU has allowed seven opponents to shoot 50 percent or better from the field this season while 16 have been held to 40 or less percent ... MSU has recorded 21 blocked shots over the last four games while opponents have blocked 15 Spartan attempts ...

TOM IZZO RADIO SHOW INFO -- The Tom Izzo Radio Show can be heard throughout the state of Michigan on MSU basketball affiliates. The show is held at Tripper's Sports Lounge on Monday evenings on Mondays from 7:00-8:00 p.m.

SPARTAN "D" CLAMPING DOWN ON OPPONENTS
Michigan State's 16-4 record over the last 20 games has been fueled in part by a defense that ranks at or near the top in a number of league statistical catgories. The following is a chart indicating how the last 20 opponents have fared vs. MSU in scoring and field goal percentage prior to and following its game vs. MSU.

Opp Scoring
                            Total vs.  OPP FG%     FG%
Date Opp     Avg. Before MSU  MSU    Before MSU  vs. MSU
12/17 Wright St.  68.4         52       .434      .311
12/20 S. Fla.     66.0         53       .429      .246
12/17 E. Illin.   73.7         69       .442      .385
12/30 Purdue      91.0         57       .517      .345
1/ 8 Wisconsin    64.9         40       .437      .279
1/10 Michigan     76.5         79       .496      .510
1/14 Minnesota    72.9         60       .455      .349
1/17 Illinois     71.9         64       .431      .564
1/21 Iowa         85.0         57       .507      .362
1/24 Penn State   73.5         59       .492      .375
1/28 Indiana      76.2         66       .497      .400
1/31 N'western    61.2         66(ot)   .494      .533
2/ 4 Ohio State   63.8         58       .445      .370
2/ 7 Iowa         81.4         64       .491      .390
2/12 Illinois     69.9         84       .432      .532
2/14 Minnesota    71.3         59       .439      .415
2/17 Michigan     75.6         75       .482      .451
2/21 Wisconsin    61.2         47       .409      .308
3/ 1 Purdue       85.2         99(ot)   .490      .522
3/ 6 Minnesota    71.2         76       .440      .519

SPARTANS IN THE 1990s -- Now that the 1998 Big Ten regular season is in the books, Michigan State is tied with Michigan for the third-best Big Ten record during the decade of the 1990s. The Spartans and U-M post a (99-61/.618) in league contests behind Indiana (107-53, .673) and Purdue (.673). MSU, Indiana, Purdue and Michigan are the only teams to have recorded nine or more wins in Big Ten play in eight of the last nine seasons.

WILEY ONE OF MSU TOP SHOT BLOCKERS -- Senior center DuJuan Wiley's 48 blocked shots this year ranks him third on the school's seasonal chart behind Ken Johnson's No. 1 mark of 72 (1984-85) and Ron Charles' No. 2 standard of 51 (1979-80). Wiley has helped the Spartans to a total of 111 blocks this year compared to last year's 29-game total of 70. The 111 blocked shots by MSU this year are the most ever by a Spartan team and the second time a Spartan squad has cracked the century mark (105 in 1984-85 in 29 games).

MSU AND THE 1998 NCAA TOURNEY FIELD -- A total of seven opponents, who accounted for 10 games on MSU's schedule this year, captured a berth to the NCAA Tournament field. Non-conference foes that made the "Big Dance" included Detroit, Temple and Illinois-Chicago while Big Ten opponents Indiana, Michigan, Purdue and Illinois also advanced. The Spartans compiled a record of 4-6 against teams on their schedule that are in this year's NCAA field.

MSU LIKES 2nd HALF-- Entering the NCAA Tournament, MSU has outscored the opposition in the second half in 19 of the last 23 contests. In 16 league contests, the Spartans posted a 40.8-34.7 second-half scoring advantage and enjoyed a second-half scoring advantage of 10 or more points on eight occasions during the conference season.

MSU FOUL SHOOTING IN LAST 4:30 & OVERTIME IN GAMES DECIDED BY 10 OR FEWER POINTS
GONZAGA: Cleaves (2-3), Hutson (1-2)
TEMPLE: Smith (2-3), Thomas (0-2)
DETROIT: Cleaves (2-2)
Michigan: Hutson (2-2), Klein (2-2), Cleaves (1-2) ILLINOIS: Cleaves (3-3), Klein (2-4), Smith (1-2) Northwestern: Cleaves (8-10), Bell (4-4), Smith (0-2), Granger (1-2) MICHIGAN: Cleaves (2-2), Klein (4-4), Bell (1-2), Smith (1-2) Wisconsin: Cleaves (1-2), Bell (2-2)
PURDUE: Hutson (2-2)
Minnesota: Cleaves (1-4)
TOTALS: Cleaves (19-28, .678); Hutson (5-6, .833); Smith (4-9, .444); Thomas (0-2, .000); Klein (8-10, .800); Bell (7-8, .875); Granger (1-2, .500)

CLEAVES AN ALL-AROUND THREAT -- Mateen Cleaves closed out the Big Ten portion of the schedule as the only player in the conference to rank in the top 10 in scoring (10th, 16.1 ppg), assists (1st, 7.75 apg) and steals (1st, 2.75 spg). Cleaves is just the fourth different player in the Big Ten to pace the conference in both assists and steals in the same year. Bruce Douglas of Illinois (twice, 1984 & 1986), Gary Grant of Michigan (1988) and Tracy Webster of Wisconsin (1993) are the others to have accomplished that (seasonal steals records started being kept by the league in 1983). His 68 steals tops the MSU squad, and he has registered 15 games of two or more thefts this season. Cleaves has steals in 16 of his last 17 games.

SPARTANS' DEPTH SHOWS ON THE BOARDS -- Heading into the NCAA Tournament, MSU has four players with 100 or more rebounds and another, DuJuan Wiley, with 95 caroms. In last year's 29-game schedule, MSU had a pair of 100-plus rebounders, while during Izzo's first campaign, the Green and White claimed four cagers with 100 or more boards over 32 games. The last MSU team to have five players cracking the century mark in rebounding was the 1993-94 squad with six (Anthony Miller, 287, Quinton Brooks, 142, Shawn Respert, 127, Eric Snow, 111, Daimon Beathea, 107, and Jamie Feick, 104).

BIG TEN TEAM RECORDS
(as of 3/8)
Team (Overall Record) W   L PCT
Michigan State (20-7) 13  3 .813
Illinois (22-9)       13  3 .813
Purdue (26-7)         12  4 .750
Michigan (24-8)       11  5 .688
Iowa (20-10)           9  7 .563
Indiana (19-11)        9  7 .563
Penn State (15-12)     8  8 .500
Minnesota (15-15)      6 10 .375
Northwestern (10-17)   3 13 .188
Wisconsin (12-19)      3 13 .188
Ohio State (8-22)      1 15 .063
MSU SEASONAL 3PT FIELD GOAL LEADERS
Player          Year     Total
Shawn Respert  1994-95   119
Shawn Respert  1993-94    92
Kirk Manns     1989-90    81
Kirk Manns     1988-89    69
Steve Smith    1990-91    66
Jason Klein    1997-98    65
Shawn Respert  1991-92    60
Shawn Respert  1992-93    60
Ray Weathers   1996-97    53
Steve Smith    1989-90    45
Mateen Cleaves 1997-98    44

MSU AND THE RATINGS -- Through games played Mar. 8, Michigan State held down the No. 17 spot in the Sagarin Ratings. The Spartans had a rating of 87.29, third among Big Ten squads -- Purdue (8th, 90.05) and Michigan (13th, 88.00). Of the three non-conference teams that defeated MSU, Temple had the highest ranking (24th, 85.51) and was followed by Detroit (32nd, 84.39) and Illinois-Chicago (41st, 83.26).

SPARTAN RESERVES PRODUCING -- Michigan State's bench has played a key role in the team's last 14 games, outscoring the opposition reserves by a 343-178 margin (24.5-vs. 12.7). The Spartan reserves have enjoyed a scoring advantage in 15 of the last 16 contests and have recorded a scoring margin of +10 in nine of the last 14 affairs ... In the last 20 contests, MSU's bench enjoys a scoring edge on 17 occasions with the team showing an 13-4 mark in those outings.

CLEAVES ONE OF 10 FINALISTS FOR USBWA AWARD -- On Tuesday, Feb. 17, sophomore guard Mateen Cleaves was named as one 10 finalists for national player of the year as picked by the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA). Cleaves is the only Big Ten player to be represneted among the final 10 candidates. The winner will be announced at the Final Four.

NUMBERS TO WATCH -- Mateen Cleaves' 64 steals ranks him third on MSU's seasonal chart and he is four thefts shy of moving past Earvin Johnson into second place ... Cleaves is four assists shy of moving past Bruce Parkinson (1974-75) and into seventh place on the Big Ten's season chart in overall action ... Cleaves is just the fourth MSU player to reach the 200 mark in a year ... Cleaves is one trey away from moving into a 10th-place tie on the school's seasonal chart ... Cleaves has 716 career points, good for the No. 48 spot on the school's all-time chart, 15 points shy of moving into the No. 47 position ... MSU has led the Big Ten in rebound margin for league contests in three of the past four years ... Junior Jason Klein is five rebounds shy of reaching the 200-career mark and two treys shy from moving into fifth place on MSU's seasonal list in three-pointers ... Sophomore Morris Peterson is seven points shy of reaching the 400 career point plateau.

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