COLUMBUS - Michigan State coach Tom Izzo's Spartans defeated Rick Majerus-coached Utah in the second round of the 2000 NCAA Tournament before winning their next four games en route to the program's second National Championship in basketball.
Majerus-coached Saint Louis awaits Michigan State in the Round of 32 on Sunday. That may seem like a good omen for the top-seeded Spartans, but playing against a team coached by Majerus meticulous planning, which is why Izzo and his staff left Nationwide Arena on Friday Night knowing that they would get very little sleep back at their team's hotel.
"This will be an all-nighter," said Izzo. "This is a hard team to prepare for. We looked at the two different preps, not that we pulled for one team or another, but we knew that one team was going to be a harder prep than the other and we got the harder prep team. That doesn't mean that it is the better team or that it is the worse team, but there is a lot of prep that is going to go into this game."
Majerus' reputation as one of the game's top tacticians is well-deserved according to Izzo.
"They run a lot more sets and do a lot more things in our estimation anyway," said Izzo. "In a short period of time, he brings a lot of different things in, a lot of pro things. They are coming at us with a lot of different sets and stuff, probably like us. They are flying at us and yet tonight like us, they ran a couple of things a lot. But they have a lot in their repertoire and now I hear that we are playing at 2:45, which is a little bit tougher, but probably also a little bit better because I was really concerned with that night game and getting home late."
Click below for more of Izzo's thoughts on Saint Louis, Michigan State's win over Long Island University, and senior captain Draymond Green's triple double.