Spartans v. Bisons – Game Thread
Mar 16th, 2018 by 79 Spartan






















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The Misunderstood
Mar 10th, 2018 by Jeffrey Lubeck

On the previous Post:  Championship Week and Other Sundrie Items  GoSt8Go our esteemed and highly respected member suggests that Grayson Allen of Duke is less than desirable and Coach K. surely would not put up with him [sic., if he was of right mind].

TUS Sports Investigative Services (aka Outside The Lines ++) has conducted some initial research.

TUS SIS reports that Allen may ultimately be known (by the educated and informed sports fan) as College Basketball’s Greatest Statesman.  A player of great honor and respect while endeavoring to advance sportsmanship as an amateur athlete scholar on the college wood court .  TUS SIS has also learned that Allen is not the first player Coach K has recruited and played with a similar skill set. U.S. Industrialist Statesmen Jay Gould is a dooky and Coach K. player.

TUS is committed to bringing the Latest Breaking News that is of concern to its membership (or filler material whilst waiting for Spartan related sporting events).

Championship Week and Other Sundrie Items
Mar 8th, 2018 by Jeffrey Lubeck

It is Championship Tournament Week in Men’s College Basketball 2018.

The Head’s of State in the United States and North Korea plan to meet in May, the Selection Committee is using the Quadrant System to pick teams for the NCAA Tournament and IBelieve scored a perfect 200 out of 200 on a 7:43 hour Graduate School final exam – say it with me 7:43 hour.  None has ever happened in my lifetime.  Next you’ll tell me a Southern Belle can control the heart of a Marine with a simple look.

Is all this true?

What Say You Educated Guesser?
Mar 5th, 2018 by Jeffrey Lubeck

Alumni from Michigan State Football and the current Michigan State University Basketball team are situated at the top of sports news headlines today – Monday March 5th, 2018.

MSU Alum QB Kirk Cousins (currently a member of the Washington D.C. Redskins) is about to hit the free agent market.  The Talking Heads and Experts (aka Educated Guesser’s) state that Captain Kirk can command $30M per year for six years – the highest salary ever.  Wow!  Thoughts?

MSU Alum RB Le’ Veon Bell (currently a member of the Pittsburgh PA Steelers) appears to be far away from agreeing on a new contract. The Talking Heads and Experts (aka Educated Guesser’s) believe that Bell (arguably the best RB in the NFL) may be tagged with the Franchise (player) status for a second year in a row.  The Steelers would be allowed to pay $14.5M for the ability to make the designation. According to the TH\E’s, Bell wants a long-term contract and is threatening to retire.  Thoughts?

MSU Basketball is square in the middle of the discussion of the upcoming NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. The Talking Heads and Experts (aka Educated Guesser’s) cannot talk about seeding or favorites without mentioning MSU.  MSU (29-4 and B1G Regular Season Champion) lost to rival scUM in the BBT Semi-Final.  The loss stung.  However most of the Poll Voters, Bracketologist’s and TH\E’s were on record today as seeing MSU remaining near the top of the seeding. Thoughts?

MSU Will (Likely) Not Get a #1 Seed And It Does Not Matter
Feb 28th, 2018 by Jeffrey Lubeck

The Michigan State University Men’s Basketball team is highly unlikely to earn a #1 Seed in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship.  This conclusion even considers the Spartans adding the B1G Tournament Title to its Regular Season Title and current 28-3 Record. So, forget About It!!!

What matters is we and most who follow college basketball know MSU is one of a handful of teams that are highly likely to advance to the Final Four in San Antonio.

As we all know if your team is a Seed between #1-#3 (and sometimes a #4) they have fairly level playing court trying to get to the Final Four.  The material hindrances to getting to the Final Four are the Region placement and opponent match-ups (e.g. facing Duke in the Sweet Sixteen somewhere in North Carolina).

So why won’t MSU get #1 Seed

The numbers and a new system for the Selection Committee using them is the blocking event.  The new quadrant system using the Ratings Power Index (RPI) as its baseline currently has MSU no better than a #2.  Good or bad that is the way it is.

It should be noted the Quadrant System method was recommended by a sub-committee that included coaches.  The exception is they recommended using three measures – Basketball Power Index, Sagarin Index and KenPom Index – as the basis and not the RPI. They believed the RPI was too flawed to use as the foundation.  The TUS Department of Statistics has created a Seeding using the recommended model. Purdue is at #4 and MSU #5 overall and are in a virtual tie for the last #1 Seed as of yesterday.

In order to get to a #1 Seed in the current system of measures MSU needs to win the BTT and have Virginia, Duke, Xavier and Kansas lose another game in the regular season and or lose early in their respective tourney’s.  Otherwise it is a #2 Seed.  If MSU loses on Friday in the BTT do not be surprised to see the Spartans as a #3 Seed.

While MSU is notorious for playing a brutal Non-Conference schedule (NC-SOS) – often in the top ten in the country in terms of difficulty – this season is the opposite.  MSU’s NC-SOS currently sits at #209.  The B1G Conference is normally near are at the top of the ladder in terms of measuring conference strength.  This year it is at the bottom.

Ironically using the sub-committee Quadrant System method, Michigan State, Purdue, Michigan and Ohio State would all be seeded #4 or better.

Why not getting #1 Seed does not matter

As TUS Members we know full that while getting the #1 Seed is extremely helpful historically, it does not determine MSU’s Final Four appearance fate.

Under the direction of Tom Izzo MSU has played in the Final Four seven times with Seedings as follows: #1 (3 times), #2 (1 time), #5 (2 times), and #7 (1 time).  So while a #1 Seed looks to be very helpful it is not critical.  MSU has been seeded #1 four times under Izzo and gone to the Final Four three times. So if MSU does receive a #1 Seeding and history matters; start packing for San Antonio.

What really matters

MSU & TUS focusing on the BTT and getting some physical and mental rest.


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2017-2018 Men’s Basketball B1G Regular Season Champions – By The Numbers
Feb 25th, 2018 by Jeffrey Lubeck

The 2017-2018 Spartans of Michigan State University Men’s Basketball team claimed the B1G Regular Season title today by beating the Badgers of Wisconsin in Madison (WI) 68-65.

With the victory, this edition of the Spartans compile the best single-regular season record in the illustrious history of the program at 28-3 (16-2 BIG).  It is the 8th B1G Regular Season Championship (3rd outright) under the direction of Head Coach Tom Izzo.

The Spartans head to the City of New York in the State of New York to play in the B1G Tournament in Madison Square Garden.  The Spartans get a double-bye.  Their first game will be at Noon ET on Friday March 2nd against the winner of the #8 vs. #9 Seed game on Thursday.

I decided not to wait for the various statistics services. So I had The TUS Statistics Department put together the numbers from the entire regular season.  Average per game – played or not (31), Average per 40 minutes, and Season Total.

Name three things that come to mind about this team (statistics related or not).


A Shot of (@)Whiskey
Feb 25th, 2018 by USMC Retired

Questions surrounded MSU rhis week.

Izzo denied wrong-doing by anyone.

Some suggested Miles Bridges should not even play.


Spartans take on the Madison Dolly’s today at 1300 before CBS switches to PGA Golf (and Tiger’s 4th round of competitive golf in almost 4 years). The game is being played inside a place located on the frozen tundra, though south of Green Bay, Wisconsin.  It should be a raucous crowd urging their heroes on in the last game of the season as they have now won a trifecta. As the post season opportunities will be limited to the BTT this year, the home crowd will be primed for an upset of the #1/#2 Spartans.

Points to ponder:

Whiskey has not had a very stellar season (middling to say the best @14-16, although they are on the aforementioned 3 game winning streak ) with their only claim to fame being the recent defeat of PU in the Chickens recent 3 game slide. In that game the Whiskey center Ethan Happ outplayed the fleet footed Chicken center (unlike the Spartans, in the previous game who chose NOT to double team Haas, but defend the 3) Containing Happ is a must to garner the win in Madison. As alluded earlier, Whiskey played Minnie-Haha on Monday and won, then traveled to the rock concert home of the MildCats on Tuesday and won. In those games their cast of characters didn’t change with Happ averaging in double figures in scoring, while not rebounding near as well as he ought.  Other starters had 1 of 2 good games . Former Spartan Travis Trice’s younger brother D’Mitrik (W#0) played for Whiskey a good bit, but did not see the floor in the last 2 games.

Folks to watch from Whiskey team include Happ (W#22) Davison (W#21) and Iverson (W#1): the 1st 2 for scoring and #22 does get 8 rebounds in BT play and the latter for his rebounding assistance to #22, he gets almost 8 himself. Spartans won comfortably at home, but as noted above this game is across the Big Lake and we all know what foibles can transpire in enemy territory (if not…..)

From Kindle, but I wholeheartedly agree, the pics are also from him

We are aware the Spartans will at least share the Big Ten Title, which now gives Tom Izzo eight of them. EIGHT. The eight conference titles has moved Izzo into a tie with Walter Meanwell (Wisconsin) for the third most in conference history, trailing only Bob Knight and Ward Lambert, who had 11 each.

But, the bigger story in this frantic news weekend became the breathless coverage of the college basketball scandal as it supposedly touches/touched Michigan State with expense account entries of a less than stellar character named Christian Dawkins.

In the past three threads much has been cited and written about in the posts and comments by TUS members.   There’s not much to add here today soooo,

We can leave it there, for now, with this:

MSU took more than 24 hours to come to a decision on Bridges, but after vetting Bridges’ case with the NCAA, both entities  deemed his situation above board and not at risk for potential retribution from the NCAA.

The NCAA has cleared Miles Bridges to play on Sunday after an internal investigation by Michigan State’s compliance committee. That’s great news for the Spartans who are facing off against a team that has won three straight and 4-of-5.

On to the game preview——–

Could this season’s off-court distractions be any more deafening for the young Spartans? Probably not, but the team has handled them extremely well, IMHO, while winning 11 straight games. Wisconsin might be hot all of a sudden, but the Spartans won’t be nervous heading into yet another hostile environment. Sure, the the game could even be close for a majority of the first 25-30 minutes, but I think we can safely expect Michigan State to pull away, possibly waaay away before it is over.  I think MSU will be inspired by all of this flack rather than dispirited.  I’m thinking a chip-on-the-shoulder kind of game to bid adios to an amazing and weird season.

Nick Ward and Jaren Jackson combined for nine blocks against Ethan Happ in the previous meeting and the Spartans appear to have the Badgers over-matched at every position—still, we have to admit that this is the type of game that defines a season for teams. Will MSU play at its best, which I expect, or will it let a Badger team that they should beat, hang around and sneak out a win? In a season with plenty of MSU distractions and earlier turnover woes, each team has been playing great basketball as of late and true freshman Brad Davison has grown into the role of point guard while running the team very well lately.  I expect some Tum Tum defense on Davison.


It will be a close game, maybe for awhile, but the Spartans prevail and ALL will continue to be RIGHT with the world as the Spartans EARN the top Seed in the BTT in The Cesspool that is NYC.

Humbly submitted for your perusal this 25th day of February in the Year of Our Lord 2018.



Post Script/NorthForkRancher (who is holding a note card that reads, “I hear you.”)

TV Crew: Kevin Harlan & Bill Raftery on the call. “Onions!”  “Big Fella!”

3: Michigan State has won three-straight in the series—but,  the Badgers have taken the last three meetings between the two schools at Kohl Center, where they may be raffling off Bo Ryan face masks and a crock pot or two prior to the game….no pressure cookers though.

So What Now Buttercup?
Feb 23rd, 2018 by USMC Retired

#22 and I3T may be part of the FBI probe


Story is here

The End is near
Feb 18th, 2018 by USMC Retired

Our foe on Sunday had 3 other games this week.  Whiskey  beat Minnie at home and then won @NW on Thursday before our CBS game @1300R Sunday



Northwestern: The last leg of the race is uphill
Feb 16th, 2018 by LeeBee

With three of the last four B1G games being on the road, the home stretch is definitely uphill.  The good news is there will be 5 days between the last two games.  Then; travelling again to the Big Dirty (NY that is).  To be sure, the Purdue win was exhausting and the Adrenalin probably took its toll for a couple of post game days; but, the entire team was energized while blowing out the shallow Golden Gophers.  Note that since that game with PU, they lost two more.  Perhaps the emperor was not so nattily attired.

The Spartans excelled while getting only 11 points combined from Langford and Bridges.  A testimony to the depth of this team.  This same depth resulted in 24 points from the bench where all 7 players averaged nearly 12 and one half minutes of playing time.  In fact, the starters played a combined 113 minutes and the bench played 87.

On to Northwestern.  They can be tough at home as evidenced by their defeating that team from West Ypsi.   Northwestern allows only  a respectable 65.9 points per game.  The Spartans score at an 83.3 PPG clip,  while averaging 8 more rebounds per game than the Wildcats.

Key points will be rest; which should not bother us, and turnovers.  A superior team can give an opponent a victory on turnovers alone.  We have improved over the last couple of games and it will be interesting to see if we can continue this trend as we move toward the really big tourney and some very tough opponents.

The Spartans love to play defense, the Spartans love to run.  My guess is MSU 78, NWU 63.  It may be close until the last 10 or 15 minutes; but, this team likes being back in first place and wants to stay there.

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