OSU falls to MI in NCAA Tournament

He's an incredible 21-4 in the second game of a NCAA Tournament weekend. Izzo began. "I've had some bad dates in my days, but this could be the worst".

"We just played as a team really", Ward said.

If Izzo's had his share of bad dates, there haven't been many in March. He owns the most victories by any coach against a higher seed in tournament history. And certainly not in the round of 32. The Sweet 16 opens on Thursday. All that stands in the Spartans' way is Kansas, one of the most talented basketball teams in America - who is playing what basically equates to a home game at the BOK Center in Tulsa. Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman nailed a big one.

And this is still his round.

Game one of the NCAA Tournament went according to plan for the Michigan State Spartans as they crushed Miami 78-58. Michigan State's NCAA Tournament appearance streak is the third-longest active in the country, trailing only Kansas and Duke. And so on and so on.

Michigan State (20-14) grabbed a double-digit lead by halftime and led by more than 15 for most of the second half after going on an 8-2 run immediately after the break.

Michigan State shot 57 percent from the field as it ended Miami's season. As the No. 9 seed, they advance to face top-seeded Kansas on Sunday.

Michigan State can, as Self said, look outstanding.

Bridges, 6-foot-7, 230 pounds, is a potential lottery pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, averaging a team-best 16.7 points and 8.3 rebounds per game.

The Spartans have 20 wins. They pushed it out to a 59-54 lead with 14:02 left.

The Spartans were going through their final on-court preparations and still in the process of fine-tuning their strategy for Miami, their first-round opponent in the NCAA Tournament.

The team played with passion and determination because Izzo gave the freshman class a little extra motivation this past week, freshman guard Joshua Langford said. Well, they have it now.

Something to root against: Multiple showings of those Capital One commercials with Charles Barkley, Spike Lee and Samuel L. Jackson, especially the one where they sing on an airplane. Bill Self vs. Tom Izzo.

Will it be enough, though?

Two of the nation's best offenses, coming off impressive second halves of the season, dueled in an exciting first-round matchup to begin Friday's tournament action, with No. 7 seed MI pulling off a 92-91 win over the No. 10 seed Cowboys in Indianapolis, thanks especially to absurdly prolific 3-point shooting. Miami got five early steals and scored eight quick points off turnovers. That will be one of several key factors in the team's next game against the Kansas Jayhawks.

Keep it close and who knows what might happen.

"After that first seven or eight minutes, I thought we played some of the best basketball we've played, not only this year but in a couple of years, Izzo said. "(Sunday) we'll play the fourth No. 1 team we'll play this year and Arizona's a No. 3 or something. It didn't always show - we got beat by 28 or something at MI - but I felt like we were getting better.

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