Tuesday, March 30, 2010

In Izzo we Trust

Brilliant. Abso-freakingly brilliant. Of all the great articles written about Michigan State since secruring the Final Four... maybe this is the best, from the Free Press:

Does MSU really belong among college basketball's elite?

"Michigan State pulled off something truly remarkable in sports on Sunday when it advanced to the Final Four. The Spartans simultaneously surprised everybody and nobody."

"I granted [Izzo] a lifetime pass a couple of years ago totally exempting from being second guessed ever again."

"The Izzo debate really needs to shift from where he ranks in basketball to where he ranks in history. And the good news for Michigan State fans is that he seems primed and focused to make a lot more history going forward."

"Someone told me once to assume the worst about the Lions and you’ll probably be right. We should now always assume the best about Michigan State, and we’ll probably be right.

In fact, I just filled out my bracket for 2011 and I have State going to the Final Four."

Tears of joy. A real gem. God, the ES loves being a Spartan!

Early Final Four Predictions: Michigan State vs Butler. Butler favored by 1.5

Some early skinny on the Final Four. Butler is a 1.5-point favorite at home in Indy over the Michigan State Spartans. That's beautiful... we have them right where we want them.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Raymar on BTN tonight. Izzo will stay put.

Raymar Morgan will appear on Big Ten Tonight: Tournament Edition at 9 PM ET.

Also, as stated by the ES: "zero chance of Oregon landing Izzo." Read the Freep. Or, better yet, watch the ESPN clip below from Izzo hisself.

Oh, and the ES was the master predictor of the game last night, with a 72-71 prediction, predicting a Raymar double-double, and FTs to win in the final seconds. Put that wizard hat on the ES!

Ducks Planning to Offer Izzo Record Contract

Interesting development on the Free Press, with more details at www.kezi.com: "A source close to the University of Oregon Athletic Department has told KEZI the Ducks are planning to offer Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo the largest contract in college basketball, with the backing of Oregon's biggest booster, Nike Chairman Phil Knight. The Ducks can't make a formal offer until MSU is finished competing in the NCAA tournament."

Sorry, but that isn't Izzo's style. He is trying to make MSU into the best program in the nation, and that takes years. He's ecstatic where he is and has turned down huge offers before. He has enough money and power at MSU -- and whatever UO and Nike offers won't change his mind.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

FINAL FOUR BABY! Michigan State defenses Tennessee, 70-69

Michigan State advances to the Final Four, again! This is our year that we win the national title... Yeah! The ES is so fired up! See you in Indy! We kicked Tennessee ass, 70-69 into Indy! Seriously, it was probably the BEST game of the entire NCAA tourney, just solid hoops beginning to end, both teams evenly matched.

Brilliant late coaching by Izzo, including having Morgan miss that FT at 1:8 seconds left. Why not? Force Tennessee to make the play, and they came up far short. Before that, Michigan State rolled down the court and a BRILLIANT play off the missed Tenn free throw with Green pushing it and dropping the pass into Morgan for a shot in the deep post; the refs had no choice but to call the mauling by Tennessee.... but it would have been nice for Lucious to hit the first of the front end of the FTs with 40 seconds left.

Still, MSU hit the shots at the end, AGAIN, and we win! Raymar Morgan (13 pts, 10 rebs, 2 stls) was an absolute BEAST as was Draymond Green (13 reb, 5-10, 2 asts) and Delvon Roe, controlling the paint. AS the ES previewed before the game, both Green Morgan were co-players of the game. FYI - Durrell Summers continues to provide the offensive juice with 21 points on 8-10 shooting. The guy is solid.... but he goes through 15-20 minute streches (like today) where he is scoreless. If he had one whole game, he's score 50 points, seriously. He is that good.

At this point, the worst thing opponents should fear about MSU: time. All this time gives MSU Spartans time to heal, which will only help the contributions of Delvon Roe and Chris Allen, and give time for Izzo to prepare for the title game. BUT WE ARE THERE! Michigan State has the best shot of any in the final four, with great defensive matchups. YES!


One More for the Final Four: Michigan State vs Tennessee Predictions

#5 Michigan State (27-8) vs #6 Tennessee (28-8)
Sunday, 2:20 pm EST
CBS Sports
Tennessee favored by 2 points

Stat of the game? Tom Izzo is 25-3 vs lower seeds in NCAA tournament.

Great article by Pat Forde/ESPN.

Predictions: ESPN/Dick Vitale (MSU), CollegeHoops.net (MSU), Lansing State Journal (MSU 75-68), Freep (2 pick MSU/2 pick Tenn), Associated Content, CappersPicks, Bleacher Report (MSU 72-68), Mlive (Tenn 76-71), Det News, Off the Bag (MSU), HubDub (MSU), BasketballPredictions (MSU), Bang the Book (MSU), Fan IQ (Tenn 72-71), Rivals/Yahoo

Enlightened Spartan sez: Michigan State behind the continued solid direction of Korie Lucious, with a monster double-double game from Raymar Morgan, pulls out a 72-71 last second victory. It will be a physical blood bath, and free throws down the stretch will be critical to this game. Player(s) of the game: Raymar Morgan and Draymond Green -- the most athletic of the Spartans will dominate the Vols on the glass.

ES Prediction: FINAL FOUR Baby! MSU wins, 72-71

ESPN Preview: Digger, Dickie V pick Sparty.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Michigan State 2 point underdog to Tennessee

Michigan State is a 2-point underdog to Tennessee in tomorrow's Elite Eight game. Tipoff is 2:20 pm EST. Winner goes dancing in the Final Four in Indianapolis.

Michigan State 59, Northern Iowa 52: MSU to Elite 8, again

The Spartans are one step away from the promised land, again. Michigan State's Korie Lucious filled in the for the injured All-American Kalin Lucas, and played the best game of his career... efficient with the hoops and minimizing turnovers, engineering a 59-52 victory over Northern Iowa. Lucious (10 pts, 4 asts, 4 stls, 6 rebs) was excellent and avoided the turnover bug that he's been accustomed to all year. He played in control all game long. His spin around jump shot with 1:30 left was huge. And, Raymar Morgan played like a monster in the end, with a gorgeous he-man shot in the paint. The best player? Durrell Summers (19 pts, 7 rebs) made timely shot after timely shot. But, it was the Michigan State defense that played just excellent all game long.

How good was the defense? The Spartans held Northern Iowa scoreless from the field in the last 10:22, and NIU shot just 24% (5-21) in the second half. Beautiful. MSU was outrebounded 17-10 in the first half, but turned the tables and outrebounded NIU 26-9 in the second half.

And the last Big Ten team standing is? ..... MICHIGAN STATE. In all his brackets, the ES picked MSU to the final four. One win away, baby. Bring on Tennessee, 2:20 pm EST on Sunday.

MSU hoops on aircraft carrier

It looks like the game on the aircraft carrier may still be in play... on 11/11/11, Veterans Day. MSU would play North Carolina and Navy plays Air Force on the deck of the USS John F. Kennedy in Jacksonville, Florida.

Michigan State to play basketball on aircraft carrier on November 11, 2011

It looks like the game on the aircraft carrier may still be in play... on 11/11/11, Veterans Day. MSU would play North Carolina and Navy plays Air Force on the deck of the USS John F. Kennedy in Jacksonville, Florida.

Friday, March 26, 2010


GO BIG GREEN! On to the Elite 8!!!!

The ES is JACKED UP for the game tonite, a spanking of Northern Iowa is in the ES' crystal ball. See u at the Peanut Barrel.

National Predictions: Michigan State vs Northern Iowa

#5 Michigan State (26-8) vs #9 Northern Iowa (31-4)
Friday, 9:37 pm EST
CBS Sports

Predictions: ESPN/Dick Vitale (MSU); Freep (MSU 66-59); Lansing St Journal (MSU 65-59); Mlive (MSU 66-62); Rivals/Yahoo (NIU 65-62) ; Bet-Firms (NIU 63-57); Bang the Book (NIU); ESPN/Earnon Brennan (MSU); Point-Spreads (MSU); Gather (NIU); Fox Sports; Bleacher Report (NIU 72-66); Fan IQ (MSU 72-68); College Hoops Net (MSU); Associated Content (NIU 65-59); Chicago Tribune (NIU); Detroit News

Enlightened Spartan: It is tough to think Northern Iowa can keep on their unbelievable run. They are a great basketball team and MSU will need to play its best to win. But, a healthier Allen & Roe, and with time to game plan for coach Izzo, and with Izzo's tourney success.... well, chalk this one up to Michigan State. Player of the Game? Raymar Morgan, again.

ES prediction: MSU 64, Northern Iowa 60.

Statistical Match Up:

MSU Category NIU

26-8 Record 30-4
72.9 Scoring 63.6
64.4 Opp. scoring 55.0
8.5 Margin 8.6
.473 FG% .430
.406 Opp. FG % .406
.343 3-pt% .356
.330 Opp. 3-pt% .332
5.0 3-pt/game 6.7
6.8 Opp. 3-pt/g 5.8
.684 FT% .761
+9.0 Reb margin +2.8
-1.4 TO diff. +1.6
6.6 Steals 5.6
3.2 Blocks 2.0

Watching the Big Green Swamp Maryland at Pete's Tavern in SFO

Here is the story of my buddy, C, and his experience at Pete's Tavern in San Francisco, sitting along side Jehuu Caulcrick, watching the Big Green down Maryland:


First, the setting: the game is at 11:30AM Pacific time. The SF MSU alumn sends out the Facebook update to get everyone to watch the game at Pete's Tavern - a pretty big sized sports bar right across from the Giants AT&T ballpark, and 2 blocks from DGold's (Darrel Goldstein, remember from the MSU days?) pad.

I roll in the bar about 45min before the game. It's still pretty empty except for some Maryland fans in red who already have seats at the giant U shaped bar in the middle of the place. As soon as I enter, some big dude wearing green calls out to me - "hey Michigan State, right on" He and I are both making our way to belly up to the bar. He shakes my hand, asks my name, we sit down together at the bar, I ask his name. He says "Jay hu". I'm like "oh, Jay hu same name that our old running back had. Cool". We order drinks, he introduces me to this MSU grad chica friend he's with and we shoot the shit about the game and whether Morgan is going to play well, etc.

The conversation turns to when and why I moved out to California. I ask him, what brought you out here. He says "football" ... very long pause on my part as I suddenly put two and two together and realize that this is Jehuu Caulcrick. In other words, I'm sitting here having drinks and shooting the shit with Jehuu fricken Caulcrick. The same dude who I cheered on every Saturday from 2004-2007 as he ran the football down the throats of opposing teams and in to the end zone to score a MSU touchdown. That Jehuu Caulcrick. Nice.

He's mentioning that he's now with the 49ers and is talking about that. I'm trying to act all cool and shit, but right the fuck on ... me and Jehuu are having cocktails and talking Michigan State Basketball. I talk him into switching from the Mimosa's over the the Bloody Mary. Shannon and Keely come over and sit down next to me on the other side. Then the DGold rolls in. I put him in a seat next to Jehuu. He's even more clueless about who this is than I was ... rambling on telling Jehuu about his cell phone service provider and other equally as interesting topics. I don't fill DGold in on who he is until about half time of the game.

The bar fills up with MSU alums. They all surround tables and the bar around the area on the bar where we are sitting. We're now really outnumbering the Maryland folks. In fact, probably outnumbering the Maryland and the Cornell and Ohio State fans (who are filing in for their games) probably all put together at this point. Game starts, the bar is full, the bloodys then beers flow well, the Go Green and Go White chants ring through the bar and we're catching State playing some fantastic ball. Jehuu is very knowledgable about his MSU baskball. We're talking about Izzo's sub patterns, we're evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of each of our guys, he's anticipating that Morgan will have a hot game. DGold's pointing out the fact that his cell phone has apps too.

We're in high heaven until about 4 minutes left in the game when Maryland makes their run. The nerves start running high. Bunch of turnovers by us and easy baskets by them. Nerves running very high. DGold notices the game and exclaims "look, they're only down by 4 now". Right DGold. This game isn't ours. The game momentum is shifting. If we pull this one out, I'm doing a body surf down this bar. Shit, we're only up by 2. Fuck, we're actually behind now! Time out with 35 seconds left and us down by one. Maryland fans cheering loud. Dead quiet near us and the State fans. Every one on their feet. Long time out so I (and the beer in my belly) fire up the one obnoxious man rant, loudly proclaiming: we ain't losing this one. no problem. what the hell. Morgan. Roe. Fricken Summers. Green! We ain't losing this thing. Look, sucks that Maryland made a run but come on, this one is ours.

Ball is inbounded. Green with a quick jumper for 2. State fans cheer wildly. We're back on top with 20 some seconds left. Maryland runs it down and makes a quick layup. Maryland fans go wild ... ball quickly inbounded, Green runs it up, pass to Lucious. He drains a 3 with no time left. State fans at the bar erupt. I erupt. Jumping up and down, high fiveing everyone in site ... it's loud and mayhem ... suddently I find myself mounting up on a bar stool. I have one foot on the stool the other up on the bar, pump the fist in the air and CRASH. I punch the shit out of the big glass lamp hanging above the bar sending shards of glass and lightbulb everywhere. Before I know it I'm surrounded by 3 bouncers and, after quickly settling by tab, get whisked out of the building, pausing to shake hands and say bye to Jehuu and high five a couple of other Spartans on the way out.

What a game. We had to go across town to another bar just to watch the replays of the shot.

Epilogue - If you're keeping track at home, here's the final tally from the second annual "c's SF bracket pub crawl" (original schedule below):

* Games watched @ the bar: 72
* Days taken off of work: 2
* # of different bars hit: 6 (The Kezar Pub, The Bus Stop, Greens Sports Bar, Conneticut Yankee, Petes Tavern, the Final Final)
* Broken lighting fixtures: 1
* # of bars 86ed from: 1
* # of people who participated: 7

Michigan State is still swinging and we'll be down at the Kezar Pub this evening to cheer them on. Join if you can. Next year, you out of towners should plan a trip out here for it. Go State!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Mich State favored by 1.5 over Northern Iowa

Michigan State is back to the Sweet 16, and the Big Ten Conference co-champion is listed as a 1 1/2-point favorite over Northern Iowa. The other two Big Ten co-champs: Purdue is an 8-point underdog at Duke, and Ohio State is favored by 5 over Tennessee. It would be sweet indeed to get a rematch with Ohio State for rights to go to Indianapolis in the Final Four

INJURY UPDATE: A ruptured Achilles' tendon in Kalin Lucas' left foot has been confirmed; he will need surgery and he will be out 4-6 months. Hopefully the additional rest will help Chris Allen's ankle heal enough to have a greater role vs Northern Iowa; Delvon Roe's knees are killing him and he may need surgery after the season. Hang in there, guys... leave it on the court. Damn you're a fun team to watch.

BIG TEN vs BIG LEAST: What about the Big Least and the Big Ten? All year long, everyone is talking down the Big Ten as a weak conference and the Big Least as the best conference in basketball. This discussion has been going on for years, matter of fact. And last year, well Michigan State defeated two #1-seeds back-to-back, both from the Big Least, in Louisville and UConn. And this year, West Virginia and Syracuse are all that are left... while the Big Ten has three teams in, all its regular season co-champs. When will people wake up that the Big Ten is superior to the Big Least? The numbers just prove it. We're among the last ones standing, again.

GREAT COMMENT BY REXRODE: "And how about this game, where does it rank? I claim most dramatic shot and win in MSU NCAA history. Steve Smith had a buzzer beater to beat Tony Bennett and UW-GM in 1991. But it was a tie game. This was a win-or-lose shot. And although the MSU-Kentucky game of 2005 is hard to top (and is still a "bigger" game because it was for the Final Four), I think this one buries it. No question. The last two minutes, the speed of it all, the emotional swings on both benches, were like nothing I've seen in person on a basketball court."

AWESOME ARTICLES by MIKE ROSENBURG/Freep: here (Mar 22) and here (Mar 23).

Sunday, March 21, 2010

SWEET 16 AGAIN, Baby!!!! Michigan State 85, Maryland 83

Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. Wow. Watch the video below. I've seen it 10 times now.

The ES is in Boston right now, so haven't been able to post actively but HOLY SHIT with today's game. The barn-burner of the whole tournament, with Michigan State victorious! Korie Lucious bails out the Spartans with a buzzer beating three. Gorgeous play... that last 30 seconds of the game were stunning, exactly what you hope to see out of basketball. No timeouts. Not stoppage in play. Just guys laying it out on the floor. That Velazquez (?) kid from Maryland was a stud. But, Raymar Morgan (17 pts, 9 reb, 2 asts) played the best game of his career, just a BEAST. Durrell Summers (26 pts, 4 rebs) picked one helluva day to be sharp-shooting, going 6-of-7 behind the arc and 10-14 overall. MSU shot 55% to Maryland's 44%, and hit 11-14 free throws. We outrebounded the Terps 35-21. But, the 18 turnovers (6 for MD) nearly did us in. But we won. Jesus it feels good... EVERYONE here in Boston is talking about the Spartan game, just an amazing performance.

THIS IS THE GREATEST NCAA TOURNAMENT IN HISTORY, and Michigan State is IN IT. Stunner after stunner after stunner. UNI is a great team; they kicked Kansas' ass up and down the court all game long. St. Mary's Australian National Team just smoked Villanova;

Kalin Lucas is done, likely for the year, with a torn achilles. That sucks. But, you know what, its tourney time and kids step up. And, we need to be on our best game to play an extremely good Northern Iowa team. This ain't Kansas folks... UNI is better. That team, especially that big ugly white Irishman with the red pork chops, they are extremely good -- a top 10 team. MSU will need to play its best to win.

I'm crying watching the kids rush the court, and Izzo hugging Lucas. Brings a freaking tear to the eye, it is gorgeous.

But, to the victors go the spoils. WE WON!!! Izzo iz a genius come tourney time and they've done it again! The 9th Sweet 16 in the past 11-12 years? That's just ridiculously consistently great. Congrats.

Tipoff vs. UNI: 9:40 pm on Friday. See you at the Peanut Barrel for what aims to be another wild continuation of the greatest weekend in basketball history. Wow.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Wolverines demand return of mascot: "We're better off dead."

It's March Madness, NCAA tourney time, and yes, the Michigan Wolverines are dead. A coincidence? The ES thinks not.

While an autopsy of the Wolverine mascot is to be performed, we already know the cause of death: succumbing to 15 years of basketball dominance at hands of Michigan State, concluding with a 64-48 season-ending destruction on March 6 to finally put the Wolverines out of their misery. Said David Brandon, the University of Michigan's newest athletic director, "It is indeed a very sad day for the University of Michigan family. We have asked that following the autopsy, the body be returned to Ann Arbor for proper burial and a constant reminder of our basketball team: we're better off dead."

Monday, March 15, 2010

Tipoff set for 7:20 pm EST on Friday.

Tip off time is set: Friday, March 15. 7:20 pm. EST. Sunday TBA.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

#5 Michigan State vs #12 New Mexico State: Preview

#5 Michigan State (24-8/14-4) vs
#12 New Mexico State (22-11/11-5)

Friday, March 15. 7:20 pm. EST

Midwest Region. Spokane, WA

Scouting report: NMSU via LSJ

No common opponents

Last 10 games:

MSU (5-5) lost second round Big Ten Tourney
NMSU (7-3), won the WAC Tourney

RPI Ratings
: MSU 28, NMSU 51

AGGIE Team Stats

FT% 3P%
- 78.635.514.412.91.1/1
AGGIE Roster/Stats (per game)
Jahmar YoungG20.53.53.2
Jonathan GibsonG17.52.92.8
Troy GillenwaterF14.46.40.8
Wendell McKinesF10.89.93.2
Hamidu RahmanC10.48.10.4
Hernst LarocheG6.53.23.7
Gordo CastilloG5.42.00.7
Robert LumpkinsF3.63.30.7
Tyrone WatsonF2.91.90.5

Michigan State earns #5 seed in Midwest vs. #12 New Mexico State

Usually, we have to wait until the end of the show to hear our seeding... not so this year, as Greg Gumbel announced Michigan State just 10 minutes into the show (we were the fifth team announced). So, it's been announced and it's time to fill out your brackets. Michigan State is a #5 seed in the Midwest region, and they will face #12 seed New Mexico St. The #1 seed in the Midwest is Kansas, and potentially, MSU has a second round matchup vs #4 Maryland (vs. #13 Houston) and a Sweet 16 matchup vs #1 Kansas. If MSU is to get to the Final Four, it may have to get past #2 Ohio State... which is the way it SHOULD be. Love it.

This is a GREAT region. Love it

Here is the region:

#1 Kansas
#16 Lehigh

#9 N Iowa

#5 Mich St
#12 New Mexico St

#4 Maryland
#13 Houston

#2 Ohio St
#15 UC Santa Barbara

#7 Oklahoma St
#10 Georgia Tech

#3 Georgetown
#14 Ohio

#6 Tennessee
#11 San Diego St

Michigan State earned where it sits, but this is a good region for the Spartans to fit.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Izzo hates the Big Ten Tourney

OK, so it sucks we lost in OT vs Minny yesterday in the Big Ten tourney. Not having Chris Allen hurt more than the ES thought on the offense, not so much on defense. The Spartans lost that game with a few mistakes at the very end of regulation, even though they had turned that defensive intensity to broiling point. Letting Joseph nail the three was brutal, but the missed layup by Kebler (talk about him in a minute) and the last play with Lucas driving and not getting a shot off... well, so be it. Still, the ES figured we'd sink 'em, but the missed FTs by Morgan and Lucas in OT -- both visibly gassed -- told the tale. A surprise, but a hard fought and physical game. With Allen, that game was a W. Morgan was a BEAST, his best game of the year...

OK, the story continues... then today Minny goes out and stomps on Purdue by 27 - my god - 69-42, just a crushing win.

The lineup last night at crunch time was, well, weird. Izzo puts in Kebler (he had 20 minutes) and Nix... sure we dropped a Minny 10 point lead to zero. But we needed points after getting back to square one and both Morgan and Lucas were exhausted. Shit, Summers was in the doghouse the whole second half. Kebler is a very very good defensive player, esp. as a walk on. But, when on the break and the dish from Lucas, he just couldn't get it done on offense... and the TO was critical.

It makes one wonder the extent that Izzo values the Big Ten tourney. These guys went through a brutish schedule and cliched a share of the regular season... and then the best players aren't in on crunch time in the tourney? The ES figures Izzo is saving legs for the NCAAs, and trying to skate by with playing around with lineups... almost like a hockey coach playing with his lines.

Morgan went freaking nuts on Friday nite, it is too bad it was for naught. But, methinks these guys are just fine, esp. if Allen comes back watch out. Remember, we clamped down on Minny the last 7 minutes of regulation and completely shut them down. and, then they turn around and beat Purdue by 27??? We ain't so bad, and we know what we have. Defense wins championships. Bring on the NCAAs, and we welcome any chumps from Ann Arbor to join on the bandwagon.

MSU will likely be a #4 seed in the tournament, esp. with all these other teams falling early. But, if you take Bracketology today, I'd take it... we'd run the region.

Friday, March 12, 2010

MSU favored by 3 over Minny

#3 Spartans are favored by 3 in its matchup at 9 pm tonight vs. #6 Minnesota.

So far today: #1 Ohio State nipped #8 scUM Yellow Bellies, #5 Illinois defeated #4 Wisconsin.
Up next: #2 Purdue vs #7 Northwestern, Big Ten Network

MSU vs Minnesota, 9 pm Tonight

Big Ten Tourney schedule below...

Friday. #3 Michigan State tips off vs Minnesota, 8:55 pm. BTN.
Saturday. MSU vs Purdue/Ind. 4 pm. CBS.
Sunday. MSU in title game. 3:30 pm. CBS.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Notre Dame to join Big Ten? Chris Allen suspended

Has the sleeping giant finally awoke? Read over at NY Times about Notre Dame rethinking its football status, and if enough teams join the Big Ten expect ND to be one of them. Financially, they can't afford it otherwise... especially after paying out about $20+ million in football buyouts of Willingham, O'Leary, and Weis and getting crappy football the past 8 years. The ES moves ND up his list to a maybe to a LIKELY to join the Big Ten. Maybe they aren't so dumb down in South Bend after all.

Chris Allen suspended

OK, so our recent best-defender, Chris Allen, has been suspended by Izzo for "classroom issues" although his eligibility isn't in jeopardy. Not sure if he will play in the Big Ten tourney. If I was coach, I'd make him stay home. He's not traveling already, and he needs to learn what he went to MSU for. If he came to MSU for basketball, he can stay home. If he wants to learn something -- Allen will never play pro ball anywhere except maybe in Israel or Hong Kong -- then he should screw his head back on and hit the books.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Michigan State wins Big Ten Title by EMBARASSING MICHIGAN


Yes, we KICKED THEIR ARSE. Michigan State brought Michigan to the woodshed tonight, giving them an old-fashioned butt-whipping in a not-as-close-as-the-score-indicates, 64-48 whipping. Everyone played well except for Korie Lucious. And Nix, Morgan, Roe and Green were dominant in the paint. Matter of fact, both Nix and Morgan played their best games of the year, particularly defensively. Nix completely shut down Sims time and time again. It brought a tear to the ES' eye, his dominance defensively.

Great post game ceremony afterwards raising the banner.... photos below but lots of photos on the ES' Flickr site - just click on the photos in the right column, scroll down...

Spartans favored by 10 over Yellow Bellies: TITLE TOWN TODAY!


#11 Michigan State is an 10-point favorite over our arch rivals... tipoff today is set for 4 pm EST. The Brezlin Center will be ROCKING!

It's time for MSU to play its A-game, particularly to have Kalin Lucas dispense with his double-digit drought, and to have the continued recent solid play of Raymar Morgan help to dominate the Yellow Bellies. It would be a bonus if we can get Durrell Summers on track with his sharp shooting and high flying talents... his shooting has been off in the last 3 weeks. Don't be surprised if scUM's Sims scores 20 or more points today - including a few threes. The guy is on fire. But, it won't be enough.

Feel the HATE. Hate scUM and their stupid M, their ugly helmets, and that piss-colored yellow. Let's kick their ass... AGAIN.

ES predicts Title Town again: Halftime - Michigan State 32, scUM 24. Final Score: Michigan State 70, scUM 56. MVP/Player of the Game - Raymar Morgan with another double double... he's an extreme mismatch for scUM defense.

Friday, March 05, 2010

#11 MSU slips past JoePa; Big Ten report considers the Big 16

The ES returns from a stint in Washington DC to listen on the radio to his Spartans taking a nap and slipping past Joe Pa last night, 67-65. Huh?

Still, MSU plays the Yellow Bellies in the season finale for a chance at a repeat Big Ten championship. Tipoff is 4 pm... WHITE OUT, yes, wear White.

ES wuz a bit disappointed at the #11/#12 ranking this week... but rankings really don't matter this late in the season other than: you are a GREAT team, you are a GOOD/TOURNEY team, you are a NIT team, and you are a BAD team. Here's your AP poll, with Ohio State at #6 leapfrogging Purdon't.

1Syracuse (59) 27-21,618
2Kansas (6) 27-21,550
5Kansas State24-41,377
6Ohio State23-71,232
8New Mexico27-31,151
10West Virginia22-61,024
11Michigan State22-7960
14Brigham Young26-4633
23Texas A&M20-8210

Others receiving votes: Texas 94, Richmond 44, Northern Iowa 32, Oklahoma State 24, Marquette 21, Missouri 13, Illinois 10, Utah State 9, Virginia Tech 8, Mississippi State 7, UAB 6, Cornell 5, Louisville 4, Notre Dame 1, Old Dominion 1
Dropped from rankings: Texas 21, Richmond 23, Northern Iowa 25

The ES opened the pages of ESPN this week and saw another article on Big Ten expansion that seems to keep the blinders on Big Ten faculty. A third party firm which completed a report for the conference found that it would make money... but only if a "loyalty fee" of $5 million or more would be paid by new schools. The report considered all the likely schools talked about by the ES and others: ND, Pitt, Mizzou, 'Cuse, and Rutgers.

Monday, March 01, 2010

MSU +26 in rebound differential - 23 turnovers + Raymar double double = 53-44 win over Purdue

Despite the most turnovers this season (23) and a 40% shooting night, Michigan State used a season-best performance by Raymar Morgan (16 pts, 11 rebs) to cruise to a 53-44 victory over Purdue. MSU held Purdon't to its lowest point total of the season. The Spartans had excellent defense all evening long, as witnessed by its constant extending of its perimeter defense. Purdue also made just 12 of 18 free throws, far less than its 20-22 peformance at the line in the earlier meeting between the teams.

But what was the biggest difference? Rebounds. MSU dominated the glass time and again, and finished a +26... that's right, 26 MORE rebounds than Purdue, with a 46-20 edge. That is also the biggest of the season. The difference (26) was more than the total rebounds of the Boilermakers. Just complete domination.

The only thing frustrating to watch was the consistent lack of caring of the basketball. MSU turned the ball over and over and over again all game long... it never got better. At one point, when the Spartans were up by 4, they forced 7 consecutive misses by Purdue: only to turn the ball over every single time their own self. Just careless basketball, and it is too bad because they had a week to prepare for the game. They made the game much tougher than they needed to; the Spartans should have won by 20.

Now, keep a keen eye on Tuesday night's contest, with Ohio State hosting Illinois at 9 pm. Go Illini!