Game 31: Michigan at Michigan State Recap


Can’t argue with anything you say.
Really to bad M didn’t have a double digit lead at half but not sure it would have changed the outcome.

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A few thoughts I have:

In all my basketball watching years (33) I’ve never sensed that Izzo was much with x’s/o’s, play-design, strategy, etc. I thought he was a fantastic recruiter and an excellent motivator (If you recruit guys that enjoy being degraded and yelled at that is) I thought he’s done most of his winning on the coat-tails of the talent he’s been able to bring in and for the most part since JB has been in AA that’s pretty much played out. This season and the two performances against Michigan…I guess I can finally admit he’s a great coach. He got his guys into the matchups that favored them and his guys executed…makes me sick saying it but they seemed better prepared and played like they wanted it more frankly.

This is a broad statement but i find this season it to be generally true: as Simpson goes so does the M offense; unless it’s getting rescued by Iggy and Mathews creating their own. So considering Z got shut down in 2nd half it wasn’t surprising the offense shut down w/o creators like CM and Iggy (removed from the floor by zebras) on the floor.

Teske has been a force this season and both performances against Tillman…doesn’t bode well for future matchups. Also, not a travel.

Livers really needs to add more to his game than just the smooth jump shot. He’s probably never gonna be a creator but he’s gotta then make an impract on the glass or defensively; something. I think JB will develop him, certainly has a track record of improving his players.

I also think Mathews mentality and attitude was missed; he’s one of those guys that relished these rival matchups, we all remember the laughing in Nick Wards face. We’ll never know if his presence would have lead to a different outcome🤷‍♂️

Lastly, what a damn good season! Sucks losing to your rival but ive grown accustomed to that (thanks football) and am inclined to view the whole season as opposed to a snippet of it. The team did a whole lot of winning and it’s been fun.

Time to make a run at another BTT and hopefully not be runners up in the NCAA title game again. :joy:


This one stings.

Teams like Michigan, Tennessee, and Duke must all have a sour taste of being in the conversation to win their leagues most of the season, but just came up short.

Let’s regroup. Go Blue!


Goins has 27 rebounds and 6 threes in the two games against us.

We got crushed on the glass in this one.

Still amazed that this Spartan roster beat us twice. Convincingly.


Minus Nik Ward, Goins and Tillman combined for 56 points and 38 rebounds in the two games.

Yep, Goins and Tillman.

No 5 stars there.

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I guess I have to give credit to Izzo, he is a hell of a coach. Winston is a great point guard and will take them far in the tournament.

We have to get CM back and regroup. X is a great player but doesn’t have a jump shot so we will always be limited by that.

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I think TIllman’s defense has changed these games. His offense is more an endorsement of Winston’s PNR feel in my book. Similar to when Teske has big scoring games it is usually because of simpson.


No doubt but he plays his role brilliantly.

Tillman and Goins defensive versatility is just such a huge asset for State.

Former walk-on redshirt ( Goins ) and a Grand Rapids kid ( Tillman ) that had big trouble making it down the floor consistently in HS, have actually just played great against us.

How those two have developed is mind boggling to me.

Needless to say Winston accentuates their offensive abilities.

MSU is just a bad matchup for us right now. We needed an almost perfect night to beat them in EL and the foul trouble obviously hurt the great start but it wasn’t the main reason we lost.

Good stuff and spot on recap, as usual.

Sorry if I’m being naive, but are we sure Winston isn’t going to the NBA next year? I always hear him lumped in (like Simpson) as a 4 year guy but I can’t imagine his stock is going to get higher than right now. I know measureables/doesn’t have NBA athleticism and all but man he can play and dominate at this level.

Reason I ask (hope!) he goes is MSU would take a huge step back without him. Don’t think they would fall off a cliff like many (myself included) thought before the season but they would definitely fall into that 2nd/3rd tier I would have to think

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Some sleep later…

I’m extremely pro-Beilein, have never at any point felt he should go, and our program is far better as a direct result of him…BUT…I really think this goes into the small pool of games he’s blown. I will grant the officiating wasn’t equitable. However, despite that, we had a chance to crush MSU with 7 minutes left in the first half, and he opted to play lineups with 3/4 or players he’s avoided all year. I know his auto-bench thing, but this game is a crystalline example of its downside.

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Even though Iggy fouled out so quickly? What if you didn’t have him at all in the 2nd half?

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What did having him do for us, exactly? Points scored count no matter when they happen.

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Got to give MSU credit, they really bring the intensity and discipline for 40 minutes. Winston is great.

Really tough game for X. As much as we talk about his generating points out of the PnR out of the pass, MSU really took that away by taking advantage of one of his big weaknesses, the inability to shoot. Going under screens, or switching and then having the person guarding X sag. And he was way too anxious on the offensive end in the second half. Then on the other side, Winston had another really good game. That’s not all on X, but some is, and the juxtaposition is telling.

Finally, while there were some bad calls both ways, this was a terrible game for the let’s not talk about the refs because the calls even out argument. Bad reffing had a huge impact against UM.

In the end, 15-5 was always the baseline in this conference, and the team got there, and lots to look forward to, but no getting around the slight bitterness of losing to MSU twice and falling a game short of the regular season title.

I was surprised to hear Coach B say that this game wouldn’t be decided by passion but by smarts/execution. I’m guessing Izzo told his team roughly the opposite. Like it or not Coach B, State’s passion, effort, and determination decided this game. Couple random thoughts:

  1. Man did this team miss CM’s motor last night.

  2. Disappointed that JP played so many minutes last night. As you said Dylan, he had to go 20 in the first half b/c of foul trouble. But no breaks in the second until the game was over?? After the last State game Belein said “if we have to play him 30, then that’s what we’ll do.” I thought JP was gassed from the minutes & good defense he was playing and simply lacked the juice to give the offense that Michigan needed. The decision is especially perplexing given how well Eli played in the first half. His defense was out of this world and he was locked in! Strange decision not to give JP a blow in the second half.

  3. You win or you learn. These losses hurt but will make UM better. And at least a bunch of young guys got meaningful minutes in this game.

Had the pleasure to turn on my tv to see the replay of the last 15 minutes on BTN. Just about everything went wrong. Simpson’s missed 3 wide open layups while Winston banks in a 3 and gets a lucky bounce on a shot that should’ve missed. We couldn’t grab a damn rebound at all and Teske looked completely taken out of his element on defense. He wasn’t boxing out and barely going at rebounds and at one point he was riding Winston to the basket and didn’t even put a hand up to contest the layup.

The refs were also objectively bad, but it doesn’t excuse the fact that our team fell apart. We were up by 8 with 13:30 left and lost by 12.

I cannot agree with this more. Thought about this during their run. MAAR was incredible at getting big run stopping buckets.

If I could’ve drafted anyone from last year for last night, there’s no question it would’ve been Mo.

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