Tom Izzo quotes on rivalry with UM

Submitted by gebe659 on January 16th, 2012 at 1:22 PM

Some quotes, courtesy of Joe Rexrode's twitter account:

Izzo on first ranked game since 1998: "It's hard to believe. ... It's been kind of a rollercoaster for both teams. Good for rivalry, state."

Izzo said Burke is different than Morris in that Burke does a bit more scoring than setting up.

Izzo: "I don't like anything about Michigan and they don't like anything about us, that's the way it should be."

Izzo: "Do I respect John Beilein? Tremendously. Do I respect U-M? Tremendously. Do I like them? Not one bit."

Izzo said Duke-UNC is a great rivalry because it's a coin flip every year. "I'm cool with that," he said, "I just want to win more flips."


CRISPed in the DIAG

January 16th, 2012 at 1:26 PM ^

Sorry.  I have a difficult time disliking Izzo.  Do I want to beat his team/school/alumni/fanbase? Absofrigginlutely.  But he doesn't create the bile in me that his collegue on their tackle football team does.  /ducks


January 16th, 2012 at 1:56 PM ^

Izzo runs a clean program.   And overall the players he has recruited have stayed out of trouble and not embarrassed the program.  Mostly because they know if they get one strike Izzo will show them the door.  

He also does not pander to one-and-done rented players like other "elite" programs (Kentucky, Memphis, Ohio, etc)

And most importantly, he always saves one schollarship for a little-to-no-talent red-head in an attempt to give them a chance in life.    So you know he has a heart too. 


January 16th, 2012 at 2:58 PM ^

Izzo "runs a clean program?"  How would anyone really know?  Izzo used the Ed Martin Fiasco for negative recruiting against Michigan for at least ten years before it stopped working.  Tom Izzo became a star because the Martin Fiasco gave him carte blanche in what used to be one of the best states for basketball talent.  If it wasn't for Ed Martin, Tom Izzo would have been just what he has been the last couple of years: Jud Heathcoate v2.  

As for that "clean program," what about the Wonders Hall coverup?  Both players involved are starting for Sparty.  We're not talking about a DUI or smoking some pot here; we're talking about making a student suffer something nobody should ever suffer and getting away with it.   

Then, there is the "Spartan for life" hypocrisy.  Izzo was one LBJ "yes, I'm coming back" away from being a "Cavalier for life."  If there is anything Tom Izzo has proven, it's that he will say whatever he has to to cover his own ass, whether or not it is actually true.

Tom Izzo made his reputation by beating the University of Michigan's program down for over ten years.  Tom Izzo had one of the most talent-rich states in the country literally to himself for over ten years.  During all that time, he has won exactly as many NCAA Tournaments as Steve Fisher did after six games: one.

Tom Izzo doesn't like the University of Michigan one bit.  

I don't like Tom Izzo one bit, either.

CRISPed in the DIAG

January 16th, 2012 at 3:06 PM ^

I don't blame you for this sentiment.  He was also close to leaving for the NBA after the 2000 title (was reportedly convinced to stay during his *final* team meeting). But w/r/t negative recruiting - do we have evidence that Izzo used negative recruiting against UM?  Quotes...anectdoes?


January 16th, 2012 at 3:12 PM ^

1) Please link to legitimate sources on Izzo negatively recruiting.

2) You say that for the "last couple of years," he has been "Heathcote v2."  Two seasons ago, MSU went to the Final Four and was one blown call away (Green getting hacked) from going to the championship game without its starting PG (Lucas had a torn achilles).  Last season was awful, but everyone knows that MSU had serious off-the-court troubles that ended with Lucious and Allen being kicked off and Nix being suspended.

3) The Wonders Hall thing wasn't a cover-up.  Stuart Dunnings, the Ingham County Prosecutor and a UM grad/booster (who is never easy on MSU athletes and gave Lucious a DUI after blowing a .07), had his team investigate and they found conflicting stories from the girl herself.  Basically, Dunnings dismissed the case after the girl told two entirely different stories on how it all happened.  Case closed.  It's not as if it went without investigation or scrutiny.

4) I didn't like the Izzo flirtations with the Cavs, but at the end of the day he did end up turning down a 100% salary increase... LBJ or not.


January 16th, 2012 at 3:33 PM ^

But #1, call in sometime and ask Sam Webb about Izzo and recruiting against Michigan.

4 (and maybe 2 and 3)....You're sounding an awful lot like an MSU fan...which you can be on here, but it really brings into question your motivation for posting a thread on MSU's coach and what he's saying about Michigan, and then defending it, over and over, on a Michigan board.

Edit:  A little detective work, and seeing you joined right after a game against MSU, and all your posts are on're not sounding like, you obviously are an MSU fan (should have guessed if you're following Rexrode's twitter).  So what's the motivation behind posting Izzo saying he doesn't like Michigan on a Michigan board? Other than stirring the pot.


January 16th, 2012 at 3:34 PM ^

I've always admitted that I'm an MSU fan and twice graduate.  I'm not here to flame, as you can probably tell by my points and how long I've been here... but when people start ripping on a man that I respect above almost everyone else in sports, I'm not going to be quiet.

Izzo is one of the most respected coaches in college basketball, both for his performance and his integrity.  There's a reason Beilein and Izzo like and respect each other.

snarling wolverine

January 16th, 2012 at 5:22 PM ^

I'm not sure you'll ever find published articles on coaches negatively recruiting.  Journalists don't write stories about that.  But all the insiders have acknowledged that Izzo was a shark in the waters during the Ed Martin scandal.  Likewise it's generally acknowledged that Les Miles used some dirty-pool tactics when he recruited a couple of players away from us, but I don't think you can find a published article on it.


January 16th, 2012 at 3:13 PM ^

Just for accuracy sake- Izzo didn't make a name for himself beating Michigan, he made a name for himself by winning a National Title. In addition in the last 3 years he has 2 Big Ten Championships and 2 Final Fours.


Michigan isn't actually that rich in talent, and Amaker recruited well, his teams just never got better.


January 17th, 2012 at 12:04 AM ^

This guy.... this guy has no. idea. what he is talking about. 


What "Cover up" are you talking about?? Do you know ANYTHING that happened there?  Clearly not, so let me remind you why you're being an idiot.  Girl reported an incident, campus looked into it, police looked into it, attorneys all looked into it, prosecutor looked into it, and the case completely feel apart.  The girl recounted her story.  The prosecutor said there was NO evidence to go on.  The case was dropped.  


Mind you, the reason MSU athletes always seem to be in the news is BECAUSE the Lansing area prosecutors don't give them any leniency, so if they dropped this case then you can rest easy knowing that absolutely nothing was found at all.  So don't try to tout that as some big conspiracy.  A girl ****ed up and recanted her story. That's all that happened. 


And you think that he made his reputation by beating UM's "down program"? What planet are you living on?  Aside from one that REVOLVES around UM.  He made his legacy by making the tournament every year for over a decade, making multiple final fours, and multiple championship games.  Those are a little more important than a rival he faces once or sometimes twice per year..  get over yourself, the guy has done a lot on his own and whether you like him or not, MSU fans are happy to have as a SPARTAN FOR LIFE. 


January 16th, 2012 at 1:31 PM ^

Absolutely no problems with Izzo here as well.  All of those quotes are professional and he respects the hell out of the rivalry.  If you flipped all of those quotes around I'd believe the quotes came from our coach.  Shame about the football side of things.  A model for respectable professionalism is right under their nose.


January 16th, 2012 at 2:08 PM ^

Sometimes the MGoBlog community can be a little overxealous with their homerism, so I am a little surprised that Izzo is respected as much from us.  And since you brought it up I will address it, I definitely do not like Dantonio.

O Fo Sho

January 16th, 2012 at 1:33 PM ^

have a very hard time not liking Izzo.  He's a great ambassador of our State.  He's done nothing but great things for Michigan.  Guy is so passionate and blue collar.....everything I would want for a coach.


January 16th, 2012 at 1:38 PM ^

You don't have to like him. He's still the same guy who left his starters in to bomb us by 50; who guaranteed victory over us last year; and the guy who bad mouthed us on the recruiting trails for going on 20 years.  Clean, great coach.  But as Izzo says, I don't have to like him back either.


January 16th, 2012 at 1:50 PM ^

I know that many people here claim that Izzo negatively recruited against UM, but I've never seen any legitimate sources for this.  One thing Izzo recruits always seem to say is that they like that he doesn't negatively recruit.

Also, during the 114 - 63 game in 2000, Izzo did not leave the starters in.  Memory gets a bit hazy 11 years later, but Izzo had his bench play a combined 67 minutes (that's over 1/3 of the minutes).  The bench scored 30 points for MSU in that game.  And no one (not even Cleaves) played more than 30 minutes.  It's not his fault that he had Jason Richardson coming off the bench, or that UM couldn't stop the backups.  Remember... that MSU team ran through the NCAA tournament never having a game closer than 12 points.

Here's the box score for that game:

As you see, he went a lot deeper in his bench than UM did.


January 16th, 2012 at 1:59 PM ^

Izzo's a jackass.  He re-inserted Cleaves into that game so he could set the single-game assist record.  I don't think you're ever going to see John Beilein do that.

Also, the year before Izzo's guys threw an alley-oop in the final seconds of a lopsided game at Crisler.  Izzo never apologized, but then when the same thing happened to him by Wisconsin a couple of years later, Izzo threw a fit and vowed to "remember it".  

And yes, Izzo milked the Ed Martin scandal for all it was worth on the recruiting trail.  Any longtime recruiting analyst can attest to that one.   Recruiting's a dirty game and I don't think Izzo's necessarily worse than other coaches - but I don't have to like the guy for it.


January 16th, 2012 at 2:14 PM ^

Cleaves left the game for good with 4:12 left in the game.  What was Izzo supposed to do?  Bench him for the last 10 minutes and just play walk-ons?  MSU was still playing against guys on scholarship at UM.  Izzo had 2 role players and 3 walk-ons play the entire last 3-4 minutes of the game.

I'm seriously amazed at people's "memories" of that game, like the guy who claims that Cleaves threw an oop to Richardson with 10 seconds left.  Unless he threw it from the bench during a timeout while the cameras weren't rolling, such thing never happened.  Izzo emptied the bench.

snarling wolverine

January 16th, 2012 at 2:23 PM ^

There was a definitely a game where MSU threw an alley-oop in the final seconds, because I saw it live.  It was in Crisler, not Breslin.  I don't remember if it was in 1999 or 2000, but it was one of those years.  MSU could have dribbled out the clock but decided to rub it in our faces instead.  Now I don't know if Izzo called for it or not,  but it was pretty lame of Izzo to throw a fit when Wisconsin did the same thing to him later on.



January 16th, 2012 at 2:06 PM ^

No.  Cleaves left the game with 4:12 left in the 2nd half, beginning the senior tradition of kissing the logo at center-court of the Breslin Center.

MSU played the last 3 minutes almost exclusively with Jason Richardson, Mike Chappell,  Steve Cherry, Brandon Smith, and Matt Ishbia on the court (that's 3 walk-ons).


January 16th, 2012 at 2:47 PM ^

When he's remembering the game erroneously too.  And using the fact that it was someone else throwing the pass to Richardson for a last minute, running up the score dunk to obscure the point that's actually being made, that he was running up the score, while at the same time denying it ever happened.  Which it did. That's why.

Multiple times defending  51 point victory against Michigan as "good sportsmanship" on a Michigan board probably isn't a great strategy either.


January 16th, 2012 at 2:51 PM ^

I'm not saying it was "good sportsmanship," I'm just saying that it was walk-ons and role players doing it--not the starters or Cleaves, like some here said.  UM had 5 scholarship guys out there against 3 walk-ons, 1 role player who never amounted to anything (Chappell), and 1 guy who was a special talent but wasn't a starter (Richardson).  It wasn't as if Cleaves, Mo Pete, and Charlie Bell were out there with a minute or two left running the fast break.


January 16th, 2012 at 3:06 PM ^

Not whether Chappell is a good sport, or likeable. Don't suddenly make like Izzo doesn't have control of what his team does for the last 4 minutes.  I'd love to hear any link of what "punishment" was ever given out by Izzo over that.

Starters were in there up 50, with 4 minutes left. They hadn't run it from 25 to 50 in the previous 3 minutes or anything. It had been 40 or more for a LONG time. 30 something since the half.  If someone had given Cleaves a hard foul, or heck, someone just twisted any ankle with say, 7:00 left (or 9..or 13), Izzo would have had a hard time convincing anyone the starters were still in there because he was afraid our starters were going to mount some gigantic comeback.  He was running up the score, that's all. He's not required to keep it down when we haven't pulled. But he doesn't get to claim the "classy mantle" after he does it too.

But he DOES earn the hypocritical mantle when he complains about it happening to him later.

El Jeffe

January 16th, 2012 at 8:46 PM ^

This might be too old school, but I had a much bigger problem with Ellerbe and the M players in that game than with Izzo or any of the MSU players. The M players just flat out quit playing in that game. I don't see why the MSU players have to as well. If you're playing hard, that alley-oop either doesn't happen, or Richardson winds up in a pile of limbs on the floor. Either one is acceptable in those circumstances, IME.

Frankly, I haven't seen much fire in an M player after the Fab Five except for Darius Morris and Zack Novak. Ellerbe and Amaker (and Beilein to a lesser degree) always seemed like they brought knives to gunfights. I'm guessing that will change when Sherrif McGary comes into town.


January 16th, 2012 at 2:48 PM ^

Because anything not agreeing with the notion that Izzo left his starters in to run up the score is "trolling," apparently.  I was merely pointing out the fact that Izzo emptied the bench, and that none of the starters played the last 4 minutes of the game (and none of them played over 29 minutes).

The oop was Chappell to Richardson and it landed Chappell in the doghouse (I at least remember some chatter that Chappell did not enjoy the next practice).  I don't think Richardson got in trouble for it.