February 9, 2012

High-stakes game with OSU a 'privilege' says Izzo

EAST LANSING - Ohio State has the second-longest home win streak in the nation with 39 games. Michigan State, which trails the Buckeyes by a single game in the Big Ten standings, would like to breaks that streak on Saturday.

Defeating the Buckeyes will not be easy. Thad Matta's ballclub has few weaknesses and they play well at Value City Arena.

"They are a pretty solid team in every aspect," said Izzo following practice Thursday evening. "They've got a shooter, they've got a point guard that defends. They have a wing guy that is an offensive rebounder. They have a helluva post man and (Deshaun) Thomas goes inside and goes outside. They have a little bit of everything."

Michigan State will need to play its best game of year to defeat the Buckeyes. Izzo is looking forward to the challenge.

"It is a privilege that we get to go down there and have a chance to play for something," said Izzo. "I think these guys are looking forward to it."

With a win on the road at Ohio State, Michigan State would increase its chances of winning a Big Ten title substantially.

"Let's face it, there are only a few teams that could beat them," said Izzo. "I don't know if we are one of them. I think we could be one of them, so it will probably be one of those rare times where everybody will be pulling for us as far as this race goes. But we still have a lot of tough games, I haven't really looked at their schedule. I have said all along that they are the best team in the conference. I still haven't changed my opinion of that especially after watching them on tape. Everybody has a little chink in the armor. We have to try and find it, expose it, and use it to our advantage."

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