The Michigan State Spartans were only a No. 3 seed, but after they compiled an impressive 29-4 regular-season record, they were a trendy pick to win the NCAA Tournament-or at least advance to the Final Four. "That's got to change if we're going to be moving on". The Spartans won 82-78 and advanced to play Syracuse Sunday.
DETROIT - Marek Dolezaj scored 17 points before fouling out and 11th-seeded Syracuse shut down sixth-seeded TCU for a 57-52 victory in the Midwest Region of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night. Sparty is by far the more talented team, but the 2-3 zone of the Cuse can be the great equalizer.
Longtime Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim knows how gut-wrenching the NCAA Tournament can be to everyone but the eventual national champion.
Cassius Winston finished with a double-double on Friday for Michigan State, totaling 11 pints and 10 assists.
Michigan State and Syracuse play at 2:40 p.m. ET on Sunday, March 18.
The Michigan State Spartans bid for a Sweet 16 showdown with Duke is over.
During the game, there were a couple times I was anxious that the Spartans were going to pull away and make it ugly. "I've seen countless situations where I've been around him where he always does the right thing, 100 percent of the time".
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Syracuse led 50-49 before mid-range shots by Tyus Battle and Frank Howard pushed the lead to five.
Izzo insisted he will be back next season to help the school and his program bounce back from a scandal stemming from sexual assault allegations were handled against Larry Nassar, a former Michigan State doctor, who was sentenced to decades in jail.
Winston scored 15 points and Nick Ward added 10 for the Spartans, who shot just 26 percent. Freshman Jaren Jackson (6-foot-11 and 242 pounds), a potential first-round NBA Draft pick next year, ranks fourth in the country in shot-blocking percentage.
Syracuse can be a problem for any team because that zone is often unfamiliar to opponents and the Orange suddenly have confidence, though still not much offense with just three scorers.
"I didn't break this year and I'm not going to break", he said, surrounded by a slew of reporters after his news conference.
The most concerning time was when Zach Thomas picked up a technical foul with six minutes left and the Bison trailed by 16 after the free throws. That said, it ends on Sunday and potentially ends in a blowout.
Trailing 63-61 with less than four seconds left in their second-round tilt to 6-seed Houston with a spot in the sweet 16 on the line, the Wolverines set up a play that involved a near-half-court pass down the floor, eventually setting up the aforementioned Poole with a deep triple try on the wing.