Embed from Getty Images Tom Izzo somehow managed to rally his Spartans basketball team. Losing at home to Michigan things looked bleak for the Green and White. Izzo said “We had a character check at halftime.”
“I asked the team if they wanted to pack it in or play for a championship.” In the second half Izzo would get his answer. Spartans all-everything team leader Cassius Winston would spearhead the Michigan State turn around. Great players, elevate their play in tough times. Winston is that guy for his team.
Winston, was able to overcome a rough first half shooting to score 23 points along with 7 assists. It put the Spartans on a 25-4 run. The Wolverines were unable to regain any momentum. The Spartans would not look back.
The win earned the Michigan State basketball team a share of the Big Ten title with Purdue. It also secured a No. 1 seed in the Big Ten tournament next week in Chicago.
“I am proud of my guys, they figured it out.” Izzo beamed at a post game press conference. After the performance last night Izzo has every right to be proud of his team.
For the Michigan Wolverines the loss was crippling. Michigan who looked like a powerhouse early in the season, controlled the first half. When the Spartans started heating up in the second half Michigan had no answers. The Wolverines seem to pack it in. It was embarrassing to watch.
What is worse, was no in-game adjustments were made by the Wolverines coaching staff. Michigan suffered a total and complete implosion. Head coach John Beilein failed his team.
Thanks in large part to the Big Ten’s best coach, Michigan State did not fold, did not buckle. When the going got tough, the Spartans got going. Earning the co-championship.
This has a familiar ring to it. This is Michigan State’s 9th Big Ten title under Tom Izzo. There is no undervaluing what Izzo has done during his time in East Lansing. He has built a powerhouse.
Something the Michigan Wolverines can only dream of doing.