Spartan Basketball Continues to Take Care Of Business as They Destroy Eastern Michigan 89 to 65

Hondo S. Carpenter

Angry Izzo vs. EMU 2015.  Photo courtesy of Starr Portice.
Angry Izzo vs. EMU 2015. Photo courtesy of Starr Portice.

Spartan Basketball Continues to Take Care Of Business as They Destroy Eastern Michigan 89 to 65

Breslin Center

East Lansing, MI

The Michigan State Spartans found out earlier in the day that after upsetting top five Kansas last week that they had moved up in the polls to number #3 today. Although that is nice, it means nothing to Izzo who craves consistency and improvement early in the season more than accolades and love.

Frankly, he is getting the accolades, the love, the consistency AND the improvement. His Spartans moved to a perfect 4-0 on the season with an 89 to 65 victory over Eastern Michigan tonight here at the Breslin Center.

Izzo said of his team’s game, “We didn’t guard as well early. We did not guard the post. We played a lot better at the start of the second half. We still are playing too many people.”

Former longtime assistant to Jim Boeheim at Syracuse, EMU head coach Rob Murphy said of the Spartans that, “We played against a really good basketball team tonight. They did a great job protecting their home court. They played like the number three team in the country. The first five is really good, but when you get into the bench they don’t lose anything.”

He added about the Spartans, “When these guys had an opportunity to make an open shot they do. They capitalize on everything you don’t do.”

With Spartan Nation royalty in Earvin “MAGIC” Johnson in the house the largest ovation was given to Spartan kicker Michael Geiger who famously kicked the winning field goal for the Spartan football team to beat OSU on Saturday night.

When they showed Geiger on the big screen the crowd erupted louder than it did for MAGIC and Geiger did his windmill movement with his arms like he did after the OSU kick that went viral nationally. Izzo said, “I could have went up in the stands and kissed that kid…My wife would be jealous.”

Izzo is notorious for taking a glass half full mentality when his team plays well and he did that tonight after a solid, but not perfect performance. He added, “I think they are starting to realize that you have team goals and individual goals, but you need the team to reach the individual goals.”

On the night Deyonta Davis was the leading scorer putting down 16 and adding five rebounds and five blocks. He also has driven Izzo crazy because he is so quiet. Well he hasn’t been on the court. After almost getting a technical earlier in the year he finally got one tonight after one of his many dunks.

Izzo said of his youngster’s verbal outburst, “He can’t be doing that it bothered me because I talked to him about it. There was no slack, but it was unacceptable. Have emotion towards us, our fans, but not that.”

Javon Bess was also impressive adding 13 points and Mat Costello grabbed 10 boards. MSU held EMU to 33% shooting and won the rebounding advantage by a 56-29 advantage. MSU also had an impressive 26 assists on 31 shots while shooting 48%. MSU had 13 turnovers compared to EMU having only nine.

Izzo said of Bess, “Denzel went after him. He played aggressively. He was a different to start that second half.”

The Spartans head now to Fullerton, California to participate in the Wooden Classic. They will play Boston College on Thursday (Thanksgiving) and potentially Boise State on Friday. The Spartans will have Saturday off but face a potential battle on Sunday against #11 Arizona who is 4-0.

Izzo said of his team’s trip out west that Gavin Schilling will not play. He additionally said, “I can’t look past the first game. The teams we are playing are different. Very well coached. There is not a lot of prep time. We are going to need our depth that is one advantage to having it.”

This was Tom Izzo’s 499th career win and said of his inevitable 500th that “I swear to you I don’t say this with humility. I am more worried about banners than I am wins. I don’t know, not sexy to me, just another number. I am sure when I am done it will be interesting.”

The Spartans matchup on Thursday with Boston College can be seen on ESPN2. That game tips off at 6:30 PM.

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