East Lansing, MI
On the night Miles Bridges led in every imaginable way. He had 23 points and nine rebounds. He also led in other ways that don’t show up on the stat sheet including giving Jaren Jackson a bear hug to keep him from a technical when arguing a foul. Cassius Winston had 15 points and Joshua Langford was the only other to reach double digits in scoring, he ended up with 14.
But the MVP of the game was Tom Izzo. His move to put Matt McQuaid on Lion Tony Carr was the precipice of the Spartan comeback and win. It was pure coaching genius.
Tom Izzo said of that decision, “I thought McQuaid came off the bench and gave us a whole lot. McQuaid is a good defender. McQuaid definitely was a big factor.”
Once again in the post-game press conference, reporters pressed Tom Izzo. Once again he politely refused to engage them.
MSU shot 50% for the night while holding the Nittany Lions to 38%. MSU had 18 assists on 24 baskets and won the battle of the boards 40-29. The Spartans also had a disappointing 16 turnovers compared to PSU giving up just eight times.
Izzo added, “Big time win for us. A real big-time win. I don’t know why we got off to such a bad start. It has happened a couple of games and that falls back on me. When you get a Big Ten win and don’t kid yourself that is a good Penn State team. Our defense and rebounding were pretty good.”
Izzo said of the 16 turnovers, “Not only surprised by that but really disappointed. That is the thing that disappoints me most about this team and my staff. You have to be able to fix this. I have to look in the mirror and figure out how to do a better job.”
With this win, MSU improves to 21-3 (8-2).
The Spartans return to action on Saturday at Indiana. That game tips off at 8:15 PM and can be seen on ESPN. The Spartans beat the Hoosiers here at the Breslin Center on January 19 by an 85-57 score.
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