SportsMonday - March 13, 2000 - The Michigan Daily - 5B
Quote of the weekend
"I got poked in the nose. I fooled around down
there with their big guys and I got it broke."
- Illinois shooting guard Cory Bradford, on suffering a
nose injury during yesterday's game. His absence
prompted a decisive Spartan run.
Player of the weekend
Michigan State's Monis Peterson
The senior was named Most Valuabl Player of
the Big Ten Tournament after scoring 14 points
and grabbing four rebounds in yesterdays
championship game against filinois.
- - - --- - - -- - - -- - -
S tate taes BT
2000 Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament
CHICAGO -Much like the Pistons in
the late 1980s, Illinois would do well to
keep its head up after its 76-61 loss to
Michigan State in the Big Ten
Tournament final yesterday. The Illini's
problem is one of age and experience, not
personnel, and within a year or two it will
most likely own the Spartans. But for now
it is the other way around.
Try as it might, Illinois was unable to
keep up with Michigan State yesterday,
falling to the Spartans for the second
straight year in the championship game.
The Illini would get a basket; their coun-
terparts would get fouled and convert a
three-point play. Illinois would hit a 10-
footer from the baseline; the Spartans
would come back and nail a 3-pointer.
And when Illinois would miss, it
opened the door even more for the fast-
break-loving Spartans. Michigan State
gradually built itself a 20-point lead, all by
bits and pieces, and the game was theirs.
"We had opportunities early and good
looks, we just couldn't connect," Illinois
coach Lon Kruger said. "You line up
sometimes and get whipped. That's what
happened to us today."
Illinois' case wasn't helped by a nose
injury suffered by its offensive turnkey,
Cory Bradford, who went down with 7:21
remaining in .the first half and didn't
return until the start of the econd half.
During that time, the fl-ini went from a
one-point lead to a ightpoint deficit.
They never got closr than seven points
in the games final 20 minutes, as
Michigan State would retur its well-rest-
ed starters from the bench every time
Illinois began to chew away at the lead.
"In games that arc so physical, some-
times that (injury) can make a difference,"
Michigan State coach Tom zo said.
Every starter with the exception of
Charlie Bell scored in doube figures for
the Spartans, included a much-needed 14-
point, five-rebound performance by
Andre Hutson. Hutson and Morris
Peterson did fine defensive jobs on Brian
Cook and Sergio McClain, limiting their
touches and hlding them to seven and
five points, respectively.
"They're a lot older, a lot stronger,"
Cook said of his defenders "I need to get
Although the Big Ten and CBS could-
n't have been too pleased with the
blowout nature of the championship
game, the toumament couldn't have run
more smoothly for MhiMan State. For
one, the Spans didn't lose games or
momentum. Izzo was able to substitute
the way he liked, since Michigan State
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held comfortable double-digit leads over
all three of its opponents over the week-
And all details of the Spartans' game
- the 3-point marksmanship of A.J.
Granger, the decision-making of the
guards, and the play of 'B' team members
Adam Ballinger, Jason Richardson and
Mike Chappell - proved themselves
ready for full deployment in the NCAA
"I hope our bench will play an even
bigger role" in the NCAA Tournament,
If the Iini proved anything, it's that
they are a tornament wildcard. They are
a feisty young team capable of the Sweet
Sixteen or better. At the same time, no one
would be the least surprised if Illinois
bowed out of the tournament inconspicu-
ously in the first or second round.
Potential is not the issue with the Illini -
Maybe the Illini are sick of being called
the young team, the inexperienced team.
But it's a label they'll have to deal with
until they prove otherwise. The Bad Boys
could tell them all about that.
Michigan State senior Morris Peterson drives on Illinois' Sergio McClain yesterday
In the championship game of the Big Ten Tournament.
Michigan State steals
No. 1 midwest seed
Schools that received automatic bids
from winning their conference tourna-
ments. Note: Mountain West and
WAC have no automatic entry.
Duke frosh Williams leads Blue
Devils to ACC tourney victory
Full NCAA bracket: Win free food in
the Daily's Pizza House contest.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Duke and
Michigan State, top seeds last season,
and Stanford and Arizona were selected
yesterday as the No. I seeds for the
Cincinnati, which had been ranked
No. 1 in the AP poll for 12 weeks but
lost center Kenyon Martin to a broken
leg last week, was seeded second.
Duke, seeded No. 1 for the third
straight year and the national runner-up
last season, was the top team in the
East. The Blue Devils (27-4) will play
16th-seeded Lamar, the only team in
the field with a .500 record, on Friday
in Winston-Salem, N.C.
Michigan State (26-7), which
reached the Final Four last season, was
No. 1 in the Midwest and will play No.
16 Valparaiso on Thursday in
Arizona (26-6), the Pac-10 champi-
on, was No. I in the West and will play
No. 16 Jackson State on Thursday in
Salt Lake City.
Stanford (26-3), which lost twice to
Arizona this season, was selected as a
No. 1 seed for the first time and will
play in the South, opening against No.
16 South Carolina State on Friday in
Temple, a team considered by many
as a possible No. I seed, was No. 2 in
the East and will play Lafayette on
Friday in Buffalo, N.Y.
The other No. 2 seeds were
Cincinnati in the South, Iowa State in
the Midwest and St. John's in the West.
Three conferences had six teams
selected - Big 10, Big 12 and
Southeastern - and the Big East had
Conference USA and the Pac-10 had
four teams each, while the Atlantic
Coast Conference had only three teams
selected for the second straight year.
On March 23 and 25 the West
Regional will be in Albuquerque and
the Midwest will be in Auburn Hills,
Mich. On March 24 and 26 the East
Regional will be in Syracuse, N.Y.,
while the South will be in Austin,
The Final Four is April 1 and 3 in
For the first time in many years
North Carolina was a team on the bub-
ble. The Tar Heels' selection extended
their record of consecutive tournament
appearances to 26 years. The second
longest streak also continued, with
Arizona making its 16 consecutive
Three schools - Central
Connecticut State, North Carolina-
Wilmington and Southeast Missouri
State - are making their first appear-
ances in the tournament.
. The longest wait that ended Sunday
belonged to Hofstra,, which had not
been in the field since 1977. The other
waits of over 20 years that ended
belonged to St. Bonaventure (1978)
and Appalachian State and Indiana
State, which made their last appear-
ances in 1979.
Fresno State is in for the first time
since 1984, and coach Jerry Tarkanian
hasn't been in the tournament since
leading UNLV to the Final Four in
1991 as the Runnin' Rebels tried to
repeat as national champions Hofstra.
Central Conne. St.
SE Missouri St.
CHARLOTTE (AP) - Duke's
domination of the Atlantic Coast
Conference has reached yet another
The second-ranked Blue Devils
became the first league member in 26
years to win the ACC's regular season
and tournament titles in back-to-back
seasons as freshman Jason Williams
starred in an 81-68 victory' over No.
Duke (27-4) captured its I11th ACC
tournament championship and is the
first team to complete the rare double-
double in consecutive seasons since
North Carolina State accomplished
the feat in 1973-74.
The Blue Devils likely will ascend
to the nation's No. I ranking tonight
and will be the first school to enter the
NCAA Tournament holding that spot
in two straight years since DePaul in
1980 and 1981.
Duke avenged a February 9 setback
to Maryland - its only ACC regular-
season defeat in the last two years --
while denying the Terrapins their first
league tournament crown since 1984.
Maryland (24-9) was appearing in
its first title game under coach Gary
Jason Williams, a 6-2, 190-pound
point guard, scored a season-high 23
points and drained perhaps the biggest
basket of the game, a 3-pointer from
the left wing that gave Duke a 61-52
lead with 3:46 to play.
IOWA ST 70, OLAHOMA 58:
Marcus Fizer set the tone and his
teammates followed the lead as No. 9
Iowa State completed arguably the
best season in school history with a
This Detroit hero, a.k.a. Duke's Shane Battler, can smile at Duke's No. 1 seed.
Bids by Conference
Big Ten -6
Big East -5
Conference USA -4
Pac4. -- 4
Atlantic 10 -3
Four with two bids
19 others with one
Bubble-teams that didn't make it
Bowling Green - (22-7)
Arizona State - (18-12)
Virginia - (19-11)
Notre Dame - (18-14)
Vanderbilt - (19-10)
70-58 victory over 18th-ranked
Oklahoma in the Big 12 Conference
Led by the Big 12 Player of the
Year, the Cyclones also captured the
league's regular-season title after
being picked by some to finish last in
the conference. They never have been
seeded higher than sixth in the NCAA
Tournament, something that will
The Cyclones (29-4) have won 26
of their last 28 games since a 3-2 start.
ARKANSAs 75, AuBuRN 67: The
postseason is about redemption. Just
Turning the Georgia Dome into
"Hog Heaven", the Razorbacks cap-
tured their first Southeastern
Conference tournament champi-
onship since joining the league in
1992 with a 75-67 victory over No. 23
Arkansas' success erased a disap-
pointing regular season that saw the
Razorbacks (19-14) finish just a
game over .500. They gained an
automatic berth in the NCAA
Tournament by winning four games
in as many days.
Michigan will battle at Notre Dame in its first games of the
National Invitation Tournament. The Fighting Irish have beat-
en several top teams including Connecticut, Syracuse and Ohio
State --in Columbus.
All games are played at campus sites until the semifinals, March
28, and the final game, March 30, at Madison Square Garden in
New York City. All Times EST
Tuesday, March 14
Tulane (20-10) at North Carolina State (17-12) 7:30 P.m.
Illinois may have los ain
but remains team o e future
By Jacob Wheeler
Daily Sports Editor
CHICAGO - Brian Cook retreated
off of the court yesterday after his
Fighting Illini lost the Big Ten
Tournament championship game to
A year ago the Illii shocked the
Midwest by casting off a regular season
which saw them win only three of 16 Big
Ten games, then tiptoeing through the
tournament, knocking off Minnesota,
Indiana and Ohio State before losing to
the reigning Spartans in the finale.
Johnson and Sergio McClain returns for
the 2000-01 season.
They are already quality players who
have taken Kruger to two consecutive
championship games. And they can only
do more damage next season.
Brian Cook, for instance, was named
4. Ohio State
5. Michigan State
7 lowa State
4h 'ekend's resuks
Beat Maryand, 81-68
Beat lfinois, 76-61
Beat St. BonawntUr, 65-44
Beat Olahoma, 70-58
Beat Caifoma, 701