Self, Top Seed Kansas See Mirror Image In Michigan State


Izzo is in his 20th consecutive NCAA tournament and Self in his 19th straight, the second- and third-longest active streaks in Division I. Self's Jayhawks are 31-12 in the NCAAs with eight Sweet 16 appearances, but they've also been ousted five times in the first weekend over his 14 seasons. The Wolverines were 44 nationally in 3-point shooting percentage before tipoff, hitting 38.1 percent, and they got prolific production from beyond the arc from Derrick Walton (6-for-9), Zak Irvin (4-for-6), Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman (3-for-6) and Duncan Robinson (2-for-4). All five starters scored in double figures, ignited by Josh Jackson's return from the suspension and confident display of senior guard Frank Mason III.

OR advances to play Sunday against the victor of Friday's second game between sixth-seeded Creighton (25-9) and No. 11 Rhode Island (24-9). The win over UC Davis was their ninth in the last ten games, but they'll need a couple more to call the season a success. Evans didn't have a great shooting day, but he still had 23 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds, showing off his elite speed and an ability to get up and down the floor quickly to create transition opportunities. Kansas has the more talented team this season, but Tom Izzo is one of the top coaches in the nation and has enjoyed the upper hand over Bill Self in recent years. The Spartans beat Miami, 78-58, in the first round.

It wasn't hard for Self to identify what went wrong in that game, answering "everything" when asked that very question.

Miami led 17-5 before Michigan State put together a 28-6 run, holding the Hurricanes to three field goals during a 12-minute span. What happened after a 5-17 start of the game? He's quietly inscribing his name into the team's record books, but doesn't want to let the ink dry until he helps push his team as far as it can go.

Nothing suggested that the Spartans will have their way with Miami. Then, the shots suddenly started falling and Hurricanes' poor offense showed all of it's inaptitude.

The Spartans took an 11-point lead into the locker rooms at the half, and things did not improve for Miami in the second half. He returned to the game later in the first half. After six early turnovers, they've committed only 6 more the rest of the way.

A combined 102 points between the two teams in the second half got the final score to where it was. The team relies heavily on freshmen as Miles Bridges leads the team in points (16.7) and rebounds (8.3). As the No. 9 seed, they advance to face top-seeded Kansas on Sunday. They'd have to win four games in four days - a tall order, which is why no team seeded that low has ever done it. MI was 11-0f-15 from three point land in the second half as they and the Cowboys both put up 51 second half points.

"My husband is from MI so I am a Spartan fan", says Spartan fan Angela Bell. Can the Spartans hang on and make it interesting?

"I think that's the case for most teams because when you're playing another big-time program, especially at this time of year, everybody's gonna come out and give it their best shot and 110 percent on each possession", Graham said.



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