In my Detroit Free Press column this week, I take a look at how Michigan State’s ability to trump adversity this season still doesn’t take away from the fact that it ended in disappointment. My article starts here and finishes on the Freep website.
EAST LANSING — One of the greatest streaks in the history of college sports is over.
With Michigan State’s 60-54 loss to Connecticut in the Elite Eight on Sunday, the Spartans’ streak of having four-year players playing in at least one Final Four under head coach Tom Izzo came to an abrupt ending.
For many programs, an Elite Eight appearance is acceptable — special, even. Ask the Dayton Flyers. But not at Michigan State. Final Fours have become the norm in East Lansing for almost the past two decades.
Izzo, who has coached in six Final Fours in 19 years, could use his tournament success as a spiel to recruit the players necessary to continue to make deep runs into March. However, now he has to alter that speech a little bit.