Commentary

Insider Intel: MSU takes a run at UNC

Have the Spartans mastered what the Tar Heels have been preaching all season?

Updated: April 5, 2009, 1:10 PM ET
By Elena Bergeron | ESPN Insider

Michigan State -- pride of a city, hope of a lost industry (cue violins) -- lost the national semifinal game in Detroit. Really.

[+] EnlargeDanny Green
Gregory Shamus/Getty ImagesUNC's Danny Green may be celebrating now, but will the Tar Heels keep up with the surging Spartans?

Basketball is a game made up of a dozen smaller battles. If you win, say, the turnover battle or reach a couple of extra loose balls (the hustle battle), that will sway the outcome. But Saturday night, the Spartans' fast break mitigated all the ways UConn bested them. The Spartans scored 22 points on the lam after totaling just 36 fast-break points in their first four tournament games combined, a Detroit restructuring that actually worked. And now MSU coach Tom Izzo will take that model against the Rolls Royce of running and try to beat North Carolina at its own game.


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