– Exactly what you want out of a Senior Day. Easy win, great play from pretty much everyone at one time or another, and for my money the best tradition in the sport. Maybe other places do it as well, but nobody does it better than MSU IMO. Lots of people to thank for that, but I think Shawn Respert really deserves special mention. He kicked it off.
– Offensively, not much to complain about. If this was even an average day for Bryn, MSU might have broken every record they have. As it is, 67% overall…50% from three…29 assists on 34 made field goals. That’s against a good defensive team as well, keep in mind.
This has been said many times but it bears repeating once more…this is the best offensive group in Izzo’s tenure and the best I’ve seen since 85-86…and it’s probably a bit better than that team was because it has a post component that group really didn’t possess. They play a beautiful brand of basketball and it’s been a joy to watch them all season. Even in years when MSU does great things, it’s not always a blast…sometimes it’s a grinder and there’s pleasure in that as well, don’t get me wrong…but this team is something different.
– MSU wasn’t great defensively. Better in the second half, I think, but overall just not the most locked in game we’ve seen. Got lost/confused on some slips and picks inside, didn’t challenge and contest shooters consistently, etc. Now, OSU hit some slop…this is not a good jump shooting team and yet they were really good today. So some of them and some of us, as Izzo likes to say.
– What can you say about Zel? Just another day at the office with 27, 4 and 13. Closed out his home career brilliantly with an ultra efficient performance…9-13 from the floor and only 2 TOs.
– Lots of good moments from a lot of rotation guys. Eron Harris didn’t do a lot in the second half but I thought he was really, really good in the first. Great vision led to 7 assists and he showed that nice step in to a midrange jumper element he’s had going lately. I thought Marvin Clark played very well, and most importantly he’s rebounding and defending better and better…that’s huge for MSU going forward as they’ll face different types of opponents and need someone who can handle a versatile 4 man. Alvin Ellis also had a strong first half, continuing to show off his strong defense and excellent vision on offense. Matt McQuaid struggled some defensively but he hit a couple of shots in the second half, something this team is probably going to need him to contribute at points over the next month if they’re to win championships.
So, we head into the BTT with a lot to play for. Get to Sunday and I think a 1 seed is a lock. I have a hard time seeing them slipping off the 2 line no matter what they do, and this year the distinction between the two may not matter much. However, for perception, etc. you’d like to see them grab that 1.