March 15, 2011
|NCAA Tournament * No. 10 Michigan State (19-14, 9-9) vs. No. 7 UCLA (22-10, 13-5)
||Thursday, March 17
||9:20 p.m. ET
||Tampa, Fla. | St. Pete Times Forum
||TBS (Ian Eagle, Jim Spanarkel, David Aldridge)
||Spartan Sports Network (Will Tieman, Gus Ganakas, Matt Steigenga)
Westwood One (Gary Cohen, Kyle Macy
|| Available at Ticketmaster.com.
| Game Notes
||Michigan State | UCLA
|| Michigan State | UCLA
| Internet Coverage
| Social Media
||@MSU_Basketball | Facebook
The Opening Tip
Michigan State meets UCLA in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament in a matchup between storied basketball programs. The two teams have combined for 25 Final Four appearances, and one of the schools has appeared in each of the last six Final Fours (MSU - 2005, 2009, 2010; UCLA - 2006, 2007, 2008). For the Spartans, this is their 14th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament, marking the third longest active streak in the nation.
The Starting Five (And A Sixth Man)
1. MSU's NCAA Streak
Michigan State is making its 14th straight NCAA Tournament appearance in 2011. It is the longest current streak among Big Ten schools and third longest in the nation. Only Kansas (22) and Duke (16) have longer current streaks. It is also the second-longest streak in Big Ten history. Indiana appeared in 18 consecutive tournaments between 1986 and 2003.
2. MSU In The NCAA Tournament
Michigan State is making its 25th appearance in the NCAA Tournament with a record of 52-23 in its previous 24 tournaments. MSU has made eight trips to the Final Four (1957, 1979, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2009, 2010) and captured the NCAA Championship in 1979 and 2000.
3. At His Best When It Counts
Tom Izzo ranks third among active coaches for the best NCAA Tournament winning percentage at .745 (35-12). Duke's Mike Krzyzewski ranks first at .778 (77-22), followed by North Carolina's Roy Williams at .753 (55-18), while Izzo ranks ahead of Florida's Billy Donovan (.733, 22-8) and Louisville's Rick Pitino (.731, 38-14). Of those five, Izzo and Krzyzewski are the only coaches to appear in the last 14 NCAA Tournaments.
4. Izzo's NCAA Streak
Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo is making his 14th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. It's the third longest active streak in the nation, trailing only Mike Krzyzewski and Rick Barnes, whom each are making their 16th straight trip this season. Izzo's streak is the nation's second-longest among coaches at just one school, trailing only Krzyzewski. It's the second-longest streak in Big Ten history behind only Bob Knight's 15-straight appearances (1986-2000).
5. MSU In Opening Games
In its 24 NCAA Tournaments, Michigan State has a record of 19-5 in its first game of the tournament. Since the field expanded to 64 teams in 1985, the Spartans are 15-5 in the first round. Tom Izzo is 10-3 in first-round games. (Note: The round of 64 which used to be the first round is now the second round.)
6. MSU's NCAA History In Tampa
Michigan State is 2-0 in NCAA Tournament history in Tampa. The No. 7 seed Spartans defeated No. 10 Colorado (79-64) and No. 2 Florida (68-46) in the first and second rounds of the 2003 tournament at the St. Pete Times Forum. MSU is 3-3 in NCAA Tournament action in Florida, going 1-2 in St. Petersburg and 0-1 in Tallahassee.
MSU vs. UCLA Notes
The Bruins finished second in the Pac-10 Conference with a 13-5 record, going 22-10 overall. UCLA lost its first game in the Pac-10 Tournament to Oregon, after winning 13 of its last 16 games to conclude the regular season.
UCLA vs. The Field of 68
The Bruins went 4-7 against teams in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. UCLA won non-conference games against BYU and St. John's, while beating Arizona and USC at home in Pac-10 play. Meanwhile the Bruins lost on a neutral court to Villanova and VCU, at Kansas, Arizona and USC, and were swept by Washington.
The Spartans and Bruins both played Washington this season. MSU topped Washington in Maui, 76-71, while UCLA lost to Washington twice in Pac-10 action.
UCLA leads the all-time series with Michigan State, 5-2, although the two teams have never met in the NCAA Tournament. However, the two programs have met only three times in the last 50 years. Their last meeting came on a neutral court on Nov. 20, 2007, in the CBE Classic in Kansas City, a 68-63 win for the second-ranked Bruins. No current Bruins played in the game, while Kalin Lucas and Durrell Summers played as freshmen for MSU. Lucas started in place of an ill Drew Neitzel, scoring five points. Summers scored 11 points off the bench, shooting 2-of-2 from the field and 7-of-7 from the foul line.
Ben Howland (Weber State '79) is in his eighth season at UCLA with a record of 188-82. All-time, Howland is 356-181, including stops at Northern Arizona and Pittsburgh. Howland is 18-8 in his previous eight NCAA Tournament appearances, including 14-5 in his five previous trips at UCLA. He took UCLA to three-straight Final Fours from 2006-08.
This is UCLA's 42nd NCAA Tournament appearance, tied for the second most in NCAA history ... The Bruins have compiled a record of 94-34 (.734) in their previous trips ... UCLA holds the NCAA record for most championships (11), while ranking tied for third in victories (94) and second in Final Four appearances (17) and winning percentage (.734) ... UCLA has won its first game in the NCAA Tournament in its last four trips ... Three Bruins were named First Team All-Pac-10 by the conference's coaches - Tyler Honeycutt, Malcolm Lee and Reeves Nelson ... Joshua Smith was picked to the Pac-10 All-Freshman Team and Tyler Honeycutt was on the conference's All-Defensive Team ... UCLA leads the Pac-10 and is tied for seventh in the country in blocks (5.8) ... The Bruins also lead the conference in rebound margin (+4.7) ... Reeves Nelson leads the Bruins in scoring (13.9), rebounds (9.0) and field goal percentage (57.4%).
NCAA Tournament Notes
Spartan Opponents In NCAA Tournament
Twelve Michigan State opponents are in the field of 65 for the 2011 NCAA Tournament, including Big Ten foes Illinois, Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, and Wisconsin, and non-conference opponents Connecticut, Duke, Oakland, Syracuse, Texas, and Washington. The Spartans are a combined 6-13 against the 12 teams, playing 19 of their 33 games against tournament teams.
MSU As A No. 10 Seed
This is the third time in school history that Michigan State has been the No. 10 seed in the NCAA Tournament. MSU is 0-2 as a No. 10 seed. In 1985, MSU lost to No. 7 UAB, 70-68, in Houston. In 2002, the Spartans fell to No. 7 North Carolina State, 69-58, in Washington, D.C.
Big Ten Conference In The NCAA Tournament
The Big Ten Conference has seven of its 11 schools in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Joining the Spartans are No. 1 Ohio State, No. 3 Purdue, No. 4 Wisconsin, No. 8 Michigan, No. 9 Illinois, and No. 10 Penn State. With seven bids, the Big Ten ranks second among all conferences.
Michigan State ranks fourth among all schools in NCAA Tournament winning percentage for teams with at least 20 tournament games. MSU's .693 winning percentage (52-23) trails only Duke (.758, 94-30), UCLA (.734, 94-34) and North Carolina (.723, 102-39). MSU's 52 tournament wins rank tied for eighth in NCAA history and second among Big Ten schools, behind Indiana (60).
MSU In The Second Round
Since the NCAA Tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985, Michigan State has advanced to the second round (new third round) 14 times. MSU has a 11-4 record in second-round games, including winning nine of its last 10.
Two Titles Not Too Shabby
Michigan State is one of just 14 schools to have won two or more NCAA Championships. Cincinnati, Connecticut, Florida, Louisville, North Carolina State, Oklahoma State and San Francisco join MSU with two titles. Only UCLA (11), Kentucky (7), Indiana (5), North Carolina (5), Duke (4) and Kansas (3) have won more titles.
Big Ten Tournament Notes
* Kalin Lucas averaged a team-best 19.0 points, finishing his career with 130 points in Big Ten Tournament history.
* Lucas was named to the All-Tournament Team.
* Draymond Green averaged a double-double with 13 points and 11.3 rebounds.
* Green grabbed 14 rebounds vs. Iowa, the most ever by a Spartan in a Big Ten Tournament game.
* Delvon Roe set an MSU Big Ten Tournament single-game record with four blocks vs. Purdue, as Michigan State averaged 5.7 blocks over the three games.
* The Spartans held opponents to .395 FG%, but shot just .385 themselves.
* Draymond Green's 21-point, 14 rebound effort against Iowa was the first 20-point, 10-rebound game in Michigan State Big Ten Tournament history.
MSU Basketball Notes
One and Done Experience
Michigan State's senior class certainly has its share of tournament experience. The Spartans are 15-7 in postseason action over the last four years. This includes an 11-3 mark in the NCAA Tournament, marking the most tournament wins by any current senior class in the nation.
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 next six games, conference opponents shot .543, including .505 from behind the arc. In the last 10 games, MSU has returned to its early season form, allowing opponents to shoot just .404 from the field and .308 from 3-point range, scoring 61.4 points per game.
Big Ten Accolades
Kalin Lucas, Draymond Green and Delvon Roe earned some form of All-Big Ten recognition as announced by the league office on March 7. Lucas earned Second-Team All-Big Ten honors, becoming just the 13th player in MSU history to be a three-time all-conference performer. Green earned Third-Team All-Big Ten accolades for the second straight season. Delvon Roe became just the third Spartan to earn a spot on the All-Defensive Team since the award's inception in 2006.
Quite A Class
Spartan seniors Kalin Lucas, Durrell Summers and Mike Kebler have won 105 games in their careers. That total ranks as the fourth-winningest class in school history. The 2001 class is the winningest class in school history with 115 victories. The class of 2011 captured back-to-back Big Ten Championships and advanced to two straight Final Fours in 2009 and 2010, reaching the title game in Detroit in 2009.
He's Back And Getting Stronger
It's been a long rehab process since tearing his left Achilles in the second round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament, but Kalin Lucas appears to have returned to the form of a two-time All-Big Ten performer. He is averaging team bests in both scoring (17.2 points) and minutes (33.3 minutes), and has scored in double figures in 23 of his last 24 games, averaging 18.3 points in that stretch. In his last 14 games, Lucas is averaging 20.9 points and 37.1 mpg, playing a possible 519 of 585 minutes. Statistically, it's the best 14-game scoring stretch of his career.
Playing The Best
Michigan State played 18 games against the RPI Top 50 according to the ESPN.com Inside RPI. The Spartans played 23 of their 33 games against the RPI Top 100. (Through games of March 13)
Michigan State's top four scorers (Kalin Lucas - 17.2 ppg, Draymond Green - 12.3 ppg, Durrell Summers -11.5 ppg, and Keith Appling - 6.3 ppg) are all from the state of Michigan. Green is a Saginaw native, while Lucas, Summers and Appling are from Detroit.
MSU In March
Michigan State is 63-24 in March since the 1998-99 season. For his career, Tom Izzo is 70-31 in March. Last season, MSU was 6-1 in what Coach Izzo calls his favorite month of the year.
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 (1.7 spg) and assists (4.0 apg), and ranks second in blocks (1.2 bpg) and scoring (12.3), and third in 3-point field-goal percentage (.383). Green ranks second in the Big Ten in steals, third in rebounding, ninth in assists and 10th in blocks. In 14 games this season, Green has led MSU in both rebounding and assists. Green is MSU's active leader with 17 double-doubles, including nine this season. Against Penn State (15 pts., 14 reb., 10 ast.), he became just the third player in Spartan history to record a triple-double. He's led MSU in rebounding in 24 games, assists in 17 games, and scoring in five games.
Balanced Scoring Is Key
Michigan State is at its best when it's getting offensive production from several sources. The Spartans are 15-8 when three or more players score in double figures, compared to just 4-6 when two or fewer players score in double figures. When a fourth Spartan scores 10 or more, MSU is 7-0. Kalin Lucas scored in double figures in 29 of 33 contests, while Draymond Green has done it on 24 occasions, with Durrell Summers scoring 10 or more points in 20 contests.
Delvon's Block Party
With 104 blocks for his career, Delvon Roe ranks second in MSU career history, trailing only Drew Naymick (134). With 40 blocks for the season, he ranks sixth on the MSU single-season chart.
Appling's Second Wind
Keith Appling scored a season-high 19 points against Northwestern on Jan. 15, but followed that effort with 11 straight games in single digits. He's scored in double figures in four of the last five games, averaging 10.2 points while shooting .548 from the field and .579 from 3-point range.
Lucas At The Foul Line
Kalin Lucas is the MSU career leader in free throws made (606) and free throws attempted (635). Lucas ranks sixth in the Big Ten with a .824 percentage.
A Rare Commodity
Draymond Green (8.6 rebounds, 4.0 assists) is one of just 10 players on the 345 Division I teams to lead his squad in both rebounding and assists. In fact, he is one of just three players in the six major conferences to lead his team in both categories, joining Georgia Tech's Iman Shumpert (5.9 rpg, 3.5 apg) and Florida's Chandler Parsons (7.8 rpg, 3.6 apg). Green and Parsons are the only two playing in the NCAA Tournament. In 14 games this season, Green has led MSU in both rebounding and assists. (Through games of March 13)
The Spartans average 13.3 turnovers per contest. It's an area where MSU has shown improvement lately, as the Spartans have committed 11 turnovers or fewer in 14 of the last 24 games, averaging 11.6 in that stretch, compared to 17.8 in the first nine games. MSU averaged just 11.7 turnovers in conference action. MSU is 9-3 when the opponent commits more turnovers or turnovers are equal and 10-11 when it has more turnovers than the opponent.
Winning The Close Ones
Thirteen of Michigan State's 33 games have been decided by five points or less, with the Spartans going 9-4 in those contests. In league play, MSU went 6-2 in Big Ten games decided by five points or less.
Lending A Helping Hand
Michigan State averages 14.8 assists per game, led by Draymond Green at 4.0. Green's 131 assists are a MSU single-season record for a non-guard. This is only the third time a Spartan frontcourt player has recorded 100 assists in a single season, as Green also did it in 2010 (112) and Alan Anderson did it in 2003 (104).
Late Game Heroics
Michigan State has proven that it can win a game even when trailing late. In five games, including four of MSU's nine Big Ten wins, the Spartans trailed in the game's final three minutes. The most notable comeback came against Wisconsin in the Breslin Center, where MSU trailed by nine points with 2:37 left. The Spartans had similar magic in wins over Northwestern and Indiana at home, and at Minnesota. In a fifth Big Ten win, MSU and Illinois were tied with 2:53 left. In the non-conference, MSU defeated a ranked Washington squad after trailing in the final three minutes.
Tough Non-Conference Slate
Six of Michigan State's 12 non-conference opponents are making an appearance in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. MSU's four non-conference losses were to teams with a combined record of 109-27, and all four have a top-four seed. In addition, the Spartans defeated Washington and Oakland. MSU played the Big East Tournament Champion (UConn), ACC Tournament Champion (Duke), Pac-10 Tournament Champion (Washington), Summit League Tournament Champion (Oakland) and the Big 12 Tournament Runner-Up (Texas).
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.
It's All About Boardwork
This year, Michigan State has out-rebounded 20 of 33 opponents, including 19 of the last 29, posting a +4.2 margin. The Spartans are 14-6 when out-rebounding their opponent, and 5-8 when failing to do so. In conference games, MSU ranked second in the Big Ten with a +4.2 margin. MSU has led the nation in rebounding margin in four of the last 11 seasons, including each of the last two, posting a +9.3 margin in 2009 and a +8.6 margin in 2010. The Spartans have led the Big Ten in rebounding margin in 11 of the last 13 years. In the Tom Izzo era, MSU has out-rebounded 416 of 543 opponents (.766), posting a 328-88 (.788) mark in those games.
Delvon Roe has turned himself into one of the premier defenders in the Big Ten, earning a spot on the Big Ten's All-Defensive Team, joining Shannon Brown and Travis Walton as the only Spartans to earn that honor since its inception in 2006. A combination of strength, great feet and quickness allow him to defend on the interior or the perimeter. Roe is MSU's leader with 40 blocked shots and has played excellent defense on Purdue's JaJuan Johnson, Wisconsin's Jon Leuer and Northwestern's John Shurna, three of the best frontcourt scorers in the Big Ten.
Lucas Approaches 2,000 Career Points
Kalin Lucas ranks fifth in MSU career scoring with 1,985 points. The Spartan senior needs 30 points to pass Greg Kelser (2,014 points) for fourth place in MSU history.
Freshman guard Keith Appling has been an immediate contributor as a freshman, both offensively and defensively. At one point, he started 18 of 19 games, but has come off the bench in the last five to provide an offensive spark for the Spartans. He is averaging 6.3 points and 22.8 minutes on the season. 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.
Starting Lineup Shakeups
Michigan State has used 11 different starting lineups this season, compared to 19 last season. Kalin Lucas is the only Spartan to start every game this season.
Solid Defensive Effort
Michigan State is holding teams to 66.2 points per game and allowing opponents to shoot just 42.2 percent from the field, including 36.4 percent from 3-point range. MSU has held 11 opponents below 40 percent and 11 have topped 45 percent, including five above 50 percent, as MSU has out-shot its opponent in 19 of 33 contests. Statistically, MSU ranks second in blocks (4.73 bpg) and fifth in the conference in steals (6.53 spg), while Draymond Green ranks second in the Big Ten in steals (1.73 spg).
Lucas In Exclusive Club
With 1,985 career points and 553 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.). If he scores 15 more points to reach 2,000 points, he'll join Skiles, Penn State's Talor Battle (2007-Present) and Michigan's Gary Grant (1984-88) as the only four Big Ten players with 2000 points and 500 assists in his career.
Michigan State ranks second in the Big Ten in all games with 4.82 blocks per game. In conference action, MSU ranks second with 4.78 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. Roe leads the Spartans with 40 blocks, good for sixth on the MSU single-season chart, followed by Draymond Green with 38. With 26 blocks, Adreian Payne ranks second all-time among Spartan freshmen, three behind Roe (2009).
Spartans From Distance
Michigan State is shooting .353 from 3-point range this season, ranking sixth in the Big Ten. Four different Spartans have knocked down 34 or more 3-pointers led by Durrell Summers with 60. Keith Appling is shooting a team-best .404 from 3-point range, as all four Spartans hitting 34 or more threes are shooting 35 percent or better (Lucas - .386, Green - .366, Summers - .357). As a team, MSU ranks seventh in the Big Ten with 6.36 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 in the top three on the Spartans in scoring. Lucas (17.2 ppg) and Summers (11.5 ppg) combine to average 28.7 points per game. The two guards have teamed up together since AAU basketball in middle school.
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 1,299 points for his career, he ranks 22nd in MSU history, needing 79 points to pass Julius McCoy for 21st (1,377 points).
Durrell From Downtown
Durrell Summers leads the Spartans in 3-point field goals made (60) and attempted (168), while ranking fourth in percentage (.357). He ranks 10th in the Big Ten in 3-point field goals made per game (1.90). His 60 made 3-pointers are a personal best for a single season. With 159 career 3-pointers, Summers ranks sixth in MSU history.
Dealing With Injury
One of the storylines for the 2010-11 Spartans has been how they've dealt with injuries and how different players battled back from injury. Several players missed significant time in the offseason due to injury. Most notably, Kalin Lucas rebounded 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
Eight different Spartan opponents are ranked in the latest polls, including Ohio State (1 AP/1 USA Today), Duke (3/5), Texas (8/10), Connecticut (9/19), Syracuse (12/11), Purdue (13/9), Wisconsin (16/13), and Washington (23/-).
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 6.0 points and 5.1 rebounds on the season.
Sherman Hits The Mark
Garrick Sherman is shooting a strong .691 from the field this season. Since opening the season with a 3-of-6 effort, Sherman has hit 44 of his last 62. At one point, he connected on 10 straight shots this season.
Basketball Awards Banquet
The 2011 Michigan State Basketball Awards Banquet was held Sunday, March 6 at Breslin Center. Kalin Lucas was named Team MVP by both the team and media, becoming just the seventh three-time Team MVP in MSU history. Mike Kebler and Draymond Green each won three awards. Kebler received the Scholar-Athlete, Unsung Player and Most Improved Player Awards. Green received the Stephen G. Scofes Inspirational Player, Antonio Smith Glue and Guts, and Jumping Johnny Green Chairman of the Boards Awards. Delvon Roe shared the Glue and Guts Award with Green. Keith Appling became just the fourth freshman to win the John E. Benington Best Defensive Player Award, and Anthony Ianni won the Tim Bograkos Walk-On Award.
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 (Charlotte Bobcats), 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.
MSU vs. Florida Notes
The Gators enter the NCAA Tournament as the Southeast Region's No. 2 seed with an overall record of 26-7. Florida won the SEC Eastern Division with a 13-3 conference record but fell to Kentucky in the championship game of the SEC Tournament, 70-54. The Gators are making their 16th NCAA Tournament appearance and own a 29-13 (.690) tournament record. Florida is one of just 14 schools to win multiple national championships (2006, 2007) and has made four appearances in the Final Four (1994, 2000, 2006, 2007). Last year, the 10th-seeded Gators lost to No. 7 seed BYU, 99-92 in double overtime, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Florida vs. The Field of 68
The Gators went 13-3 against teams in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Florida defeated Vanderbilt and Tennessee three times, Georgia twice, and also posted wins over Morehead State, Florida State, Kansas State and Xavier. The Gators lost two of three to Kentucky and also fell to Ohio State.
The Spartans and Gators played two common opponents this season: Ohio State and South Carolina. Both the Spartans (71-61) and Gators (93-75) lost to Ohio State. MSU defeated South Carolina on Nov. 16 in East Lansing, 82-73, while Florida split the season series against the Gamecocks, losing at home on Jan. 15, 72-69, but winning in Columbia, S.C., 79-60, on Feb 9.
The all-time series between MSU and Florida is tied at 3-3. Tom Izzo is 3-2 against Florida in his career, with all of the matchups coming against Billy Donovan. The two programs have met twice before in the NCAA Tournament, including the 2000 National Championship game as the Spartans defeated the Gators, 89-76, in Indianapolis. As a No. 7 seed, Michigan State beat second-seeded Florida in the second round of the 2003 NCAA Tournament in Tampa, 68-46. In the last meeting, Florida upset second-ranked Michigan State last season on Nov. 27, 2009, in the Legends Classic in Atlantic City, N.J.
Billy Donovan (Providence, `87), who is in his 15th season as the head coach of the Gators, is the all-time winningest coach in Florida history with a 357-146 (.710) record. Only Kentucky's Adolph Rupp (.842) owns a better winning percentage through 500 games at an SEC school. Donovan is also the third-winningest coach in SEC history, trailing only Rupp (875) and Dale Brown of LSU (448). Over Donovan's 17-year career, he has compiled a 392-166 (.703) overall record. For the first time in his career, Donovan was named SEC Coach of the Year this season after winning his fourth SEC regular-season title. Donovan is one of just 13 coaches in NCAA history and one of four active coaches to win multiple national titles (2006, 2007). He owns a .733 winning percentage (22-8 record) in 10 previous trips to the NCAA Tournament, ranking fourth among active coaches, including three trips to the Final Four (2000, 2006, 2007). Prior to coaching at Florida, Donovan went 35-20 (.636) in two years at Marshall. Before becoming a head coach, Donovan spent five years on Rick Pitino's staff at Kentucky.
Florida finished the regular season with its third outright SEC title (1989, 2007, 2011) in school history ... It marked just the fifth SEC title in the 92-year history of the program, although four of the five titles have come in the Billy Donovan era (2000, 2001, 2007, 2011) ... Florida has won at least 20 games 13 consecutive years, the longest streak in the SEC Conference; that streak is also tied for third-longest in the nation (Kansas 22, Duke 15, Syracuse 13, Gonzaga 13) ... Senior forward Chandler Parsons was the first Gator to be named SEC Player of the Year ... A versatile 6-foot-10 small forward, Parsons finished the season averaging 11.5 points, 7.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists ... Chandler Parsons is one of two active Division I college basketball players with over 1,300 points, 800 rebounds, 300 assists and 100 steals ... In addition to Parsons, sophomore guard Kenny Boynton (14.1 ppg) and junior guard Erving Walker (14.4 ppg) were named second-team All-SEC ... UF is 21-1 this season when holding opponents to 70 points or less ... Florida is 9-3 this season in games decided by six points or less ... Florida ranked second in the SEC in scoring defense, allowing 63.0 points per game ... The Gators led the SEC in rebounding margin at +6.1.
MSU vs. UCSB Notes
About UC Santa Barbara
The Gauchos qualified for the NCAA Tournament after earning the Big West's automatic bid by beating No. 1 seed Long Beach State in the conference tournament championship game. This marks UCSB's sixth appearance all time in program history, having previously played in the 1961, 1988, 1990, 2002 and 2010 tournaments. Overall, the Gauchos have an all-time record of 3-5 in tournament games. UC Santa Barbara enters the tournament with an overall record of 18-13, going 8-8 in conference contests.
UC Santa Barbara vs. The Field of 68
UCSB has faced two opponents this season who were selected for 2011 NCAA Tournament - UNLV and San Diego State. The Gauchos traveled to face the Rebels on the road on Dec. 15 and pulled out the 68-62 win. Against the Aztecs, UC Santa Barbara fell on the road 90-64.
Michigan State has no common opponent with UCSB.
The Spartans have only met the Gauchos one other time back in 1990. In the lone meeting, MSU topped UC Santa Barbra by a score of 65-58 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, advancing to the NCAA Sweet 16 against Georgia Tech.
Bob Williams (San Jose State, '76) is in his 13th season at the helm of UC Santa Barbara. Williams has led the team to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances for the first time in program history, and its third appearance under Williams. The Gauchos qualified for the tournament in 2010 after winning both the Big West regular season and tournament titles. Overall in his career, Williams has a record of 406-269 (.601), going 218-106 (.673) in league games. At UCSB, Williams is the second all-time winningest coach in program history with his record of 217-169 (.562) while going 128-84 (.604) in Big West games. Williams is a three-time Big West Coach of the Year honoree (1999, 2003 & 2010). Williams' previous head coaching stints include eight years with UC Davis and two seasons with Menlo College. This will mark the seventh time a Williams led team has qualified for the NCAA Tournament.
UC Santa Barbara is making its sixth appearance in the NCAA Tournament after winning the Big West Conference Tournament ... This marks UCSB's first back-to-back tournament appearance in program history ... UCSB returned all five starters and six reserves from its 2010 NCAA Tournament team ... The team is led by NABC First Team All-District honoree Orlando Johnson ... On the season, Johnson has led the team in scoring with an average of 21.1 points per game as well as on the boards with a 6.3 average ... Johnson was named First Team All-Big West as well as Big Test Tournament MVP for the second-consecutive year ... Johnson set the school's single game scoring record on Feb. 5 when he recorded 39 points against UC Davis ... Johnson and James Nunnally have combined for the best one-two punch in school history. Together, Johnson and Nunnally have combined for 1,033 points this season, the most any two players have combined for in a single-season in school history ... Both Johnson and Nunnally rank among UCSB's all-time point scorers with 1,193 and 1,178 points, respectively ... On the year, the Gauchos have limited their opponents to 65.4 points per game.