Spartans Can’t Overcome Own Mistakes & Get Bullied in Loss to Indiana 82-75
Michigan State trailed by as many as 20 with 15:20 to go in the game and to their credit they kept fighting. In the end the Spartans simply aren’t good enough to beat Indiana here at Assembly Hall when they also have to beat their own mistakes. Your Spartans lost 82-75.
On the day the Spartans really demonstrated a split personality. In the first half they played horrible, in fact embarrassing defense for their Hall of Fame coach in a place many consider the Mecca of college basketball. In the second half the Spartans played much better on both ends, but they couldn’t beat the Hoosiers AND the Spartans today.
Tom Izzo described the game as, “I thought Indiana played as hard and tough as any team that has faced us in the first half of the game in a long time. They bullied us a little bit, we didn’t respond and when they hit three’s we did not guard anyone at all. Then once we start guarding they hit a couple three’s that were tough and that is what happens when a player gets hot.”
The Spartans fall to 12-8 (4-3) on the year with this loss. Senior Eron Harris led the way offensively for the Spartans with 21. He also had two assists and two rebounds. Nick Ward dropped in 15 and had six boards to go with those. Finally Miles Bridges made 13 points and added four assists and 10 rebounds for another double double, but those were the only Spartans to get to double digits in the game.
I spoke to former Izzo assistant Tom Crean who now leads the Hoosiers afterward and he told me, “
We knew we had to play well, put it that way. We knew that they're as fast a team as we've faced and with as many different players. And they're clicking. They really are. And they're good. They're really good. And they're going to get even better, because he's got young guys getting better, just like some of his older guys are. I know we've got to continue to play defense like this if we want to keep improving.”
MSU shot 44% on the game and Indiana made 49% of their shots. MSU had 12 turnovers and the Hoosiers got nine. MSU won the battle of the boards 33-31 and hit 76% of their free throws.
Izzo added, “I was disappointed in our defense in the first half, but I was impressed with Indiana’s offense. They double dribble drove us, bullied us and they did a good job. It was boys against men. The second half we cut the lead to four but we didn’t make winning plays, so I have to do a better job with that. I’m proud of our team, they didn’t quit and they came back but we got beat by a good team. A good team that makes shot and makes a lot of things happen.”
The Spartans have a quick return to action on Tuesday night versus Purdue at the Breslin Center. That game tips off at 7 PM and you can see it on ESPN2.