PSU 72 (9) MSU 68

February 2, 2009

This Penn State team is indescribable. Coach DeChellis calls it a winning fiber.  You could call it confidence, a moxie, a mentality, cockiness, fearlessness, resiliency, what have you. Whatever “it” is, it’s sure working and it’s a lot of fun to watch. Talor Battle had it yesterday after Jamelle had it against Iowa.  These guys refuse to quit, they refuse to lose, and they’ve been putting on quite a show.  I have a feeling this quote after the Minnesota blowout is going to be a big part of this special season.

“After the game we huddled up and we said we would not do this again, we’re not losing by 20 points,” Battle said. “For us to go out there [Sunday] and get embarrassed is not a testament to what we truly are.”

Battle and Cornley are just relentless competitors. They have the swagger or the chip on their shoulder that they carry with them on the court.  They refuse to let people tell them what they can and can’t do. They’re out to prove everyone wrong, which they did yesterday (but not me!).

PSU got off to a quick 7-2 start, showing no signs of needing time to adjust to game speed again after the long layoff. But that didn’t last long. Of course, Northwestern had to go and beat MSU in their last home game, so Izzo had his troops ready to play some defense.  They were pounding the boards, forcing PSU turnovers, got out in transition, and were basically about to run PSU out of the building. Until Talor Battle said hell no.  MSU was on a 9-0 run and Battle had airballed (even if he got hit on the arm) his first three.  He killed that mini-run with a contested three from the wing that silenced the Izzone…but only briefly.  MSU went on another 8-0 run to extend their early lead to 29-16 with 6 minutes to go in the half.  That’s when Battle took over.  With Travis Walton, the senior guard who’s one of the best defenders in the league, all over him, Battle starting launching threes. After chasing down a long out of bounds pass in the backcourt, he ran straight back to the top of the key and launched it in rhythm within 6 seconds.  After another in bounds on the next possesion, Battle drained an NBA range trey with Walton in his grill a mere 2 seconds after the clock started.  Jamelle hit an open look, too and PSU was storming back to 29-25.

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KYE: MSU Spartans Part 2

January 31, 2009

Welp, PSU begins their absolutely brutal stretch of the conference schedule tomorrow (12 pm, Breslin Center, BTN).  Sure hope the boys rested up as they got 5 games in the next 13 days (3 on the road).  It’s going to be a long February…we’ll see if they can make it a magical one. We all know that the Big East and ACC have some heavyweights, but in this seven game stretch, there’s no Rutgers, Depaul or South Florida. PSU is going to have to bring it every night or they’ll get beat.

If you don’t remember the game these two teams played three weeks ago, MSU won 78-73, surviving a late PSU surge.  MSU won the ball game on the boards.  That game sent PSU’s rebounding abilities into a funk.  PSU has been outrebounded by Indiana and Iowa, since. That absolutely should not happen, ever.  We’ll see if the week off allowed Ed and staff some time to get the guys to hit the boards again. If they want to win tomorrow, they have to keep MSU off the offensive glass.

Now if they do, almost anything can happen. Battle and Pringle don’t turn the ball over, while MSU has yet to cure their turnover woes. Also, ever since PSU threw out that 1-3-1 against MSU in the 2nd half, they’ve struggled offensively against it.  They lost at home to NW, who primarily played their base 1-3-1 all game. While NW hit some absurd shots to win the game, their defense allowed them to be in that position in the first place. Coach D has said they’re planning on throwing multiple looks on defense to keep MSU from getting in a rhythm.  2-3, 1-3-1, man, maybe even some full court pressure…we could see it all tomorrow.

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MSU 78 PSU 73

January 16, 2009

No upset this year, but it was darn close.  While PSU managed to do absolutely nothing for the first 30 minutes of the game, Talor Battle and Jamelle Cornley almost willed this team to one of the greatest comebacks this program has ever had.

Unfortunately, they played like crap to put themselves in that position. PSU didn’t know that the tipoff was at 6:30 apparently, as they came out and played one-on-one offense for the first minutes of the game.  It had the feel of that 2007 PSU/MSU game, where a huge crowd attended, only to watch PSU get completely dominated.  They lost that game 91-64.  I still remember how dejected coach DeChellis sounded in his postgame interview.  “This is the biggest egg we’ve ever laid since I’ve been here”.  Anywho, back to the present.  PSU got down 8-0, and 12-5 at the first media TO.

Then on PSU’s first possession out of the TO, it looked like the same BS all over again.  Until Danny Morrissey regained the ball at the top of the key with the shot-clock winding down as his defender fell trying to steal the ball.  He swished an open look that PSU really didn’t work for.  Somehow, that got the offense going and PSU looked like a competent basketball team for all of about 5 minutes, actually getting a 22-16 lead on a Chris Babb three.

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Know Your Enemy: Michigan State Spartans

January 14, 2009

6:30 PM – Bryce Jordan Center – BTN – but more importantly, it’s dollar dog night.

PSU beat MSU last year.  That’s been noted like a thousand times in the last week. Big Deal.  If anything, that favors MSU as they know they need to be focused to come in and win. I expect Raymar Morgan to actually look interested in this game.

There’s some intriguing matchups in this one.

  • KL2 vs. TB + SP – There’s going to be some serious speed in each team’s backcourt tonight.  It’ll be fun to watch.
  • Who rebounds better?  MSU and PSU are #1 and 2 in rebounding in the conference, respectively.
  • Who scores more? Jamelle Cornley or Raymar Morgan

I don’t know how PSU is going to win if the Big 3 aren’t on tonight, and if they can’t make 8 or more treys.  After witnessing the defensive performance against Minnesota, I don’t know how they’re going to stop them.  They’re going to have to outscore them.

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Michigan State Spartans 2008-2009 Scholarship Roster

May 20, 2008
Name Height Position Eligibility
Korie Lucious 5’11″ G Freshman
Kalin Lucas 6’0″ G Sophomore
Travis Walton 6’2″ G Senior
Chris Allen 6’3″ G Sophomore
Durrell Summers 6’4″ G Sophomore
Isaiah Dahlman 6’6″ G Junior
Draymond Green 6’6″ F Freshman
Raymar Morgan 6’7″ F Junior
Delvon Roe 6’8″ F Freshman
Marquise Gray 6’8″ F Redshirt Senior
Idong Ibok 6’11″ C Redshirt Senior
Goran Suton 6’11″ C Redshirt Senior
Tom Herzog 7’0″ C Redshirt Sophomore

Michigan State has filled all of their available scholarships.

IN:

Draymond Green, Delvon Roe, and Korie Lucious

OUT:

Drew Neitzel, Drew Naymick


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