When you weren't looking

Above the freshman buzz, the Spartans have all eyes on March

Originally Published: February 6, 2014
By Jeff Goodman | ESPN The Magazine

Adreian PayneLeon Halip/Getty ImagesTo ensure they make it to Texas, the Spartans need Adreian Payne to get healthy.

WHILE KANSAS, Kentucky, Duke and Arizona have dominated college hoops talk for the better part of this season (what's new?), Michigan State has continued to do what it does best: Maintain a low profile while prepping for a deep March run. How's this for a stat: Every Tom Izzo-coached squad since 1998 has made the NCAA tournament. In fact, his Spartans have gone to six Final Fours in 18 seasons, and if MSU is shut out of the semifinals this spring, it would be the first time his senior class hasn't made it to the final weekend.