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March 12, 2011

Draymond Green

Tom Izzo

Kalin Lucas


Penn State – 61
Michigan State - 48

COACH IZZO: Well, disappointed. It's unbelievable the difference a day makes. But before I do that, I'd like to just say that I think of all the guys to lose to today, Eddie DeChellis has done an incredible job with this team. I think you've got four seniors that stuck around and battled through, and I'm happy for him, as much as I'm disappointed for us. He's one of the good guys in the profession.
They just seemed to have a little more energy than we did. We got off to a great start, and then give Battle credit, he hit four threes, and I thought all of them were pretty well guarded. In fact, he missed one that wasn't guarded. We had some turnovers that just led to lay-ups, and we just -- that game switched like that (snaps), and we just looked a little sluggish. Their defense probably had a lot to do with it, shooting 21 percent the second half. When we get out-rebounded that's usually an energy stat, and we did a pretty good job on turnovers after turning over more the first half. And just didn't play as well as I think we can play, but I give a lot of credit to Penn State. They're deserving.

Q. After everything you guys put into yesterday's win against Purdue, were you guys at all tired today and was it tough to get back up for another game the next day?
KALIN LUCAS: You said were we tired? I don't want to say we was tired, I just think we did start off real great and then after that they started hitting shots, and I think that just took something out of us. You know, we started coming down, and we wasn't scoring the ball, and they was. I think that's what that came down to.
I think Frazier was the key. Frazier had a great game, he hit threes, getting into the paint, scoring, and Battle, too, with the two. He had a great game, as well.
DRAYMOND GREEN: Like Kalin said, it wasn't anything about being tired. If we were tired, we wouldn't have gotten off to the start we got off to. We just didn't sustain it, and we kind of went on a drought there, bad time to go on a drought because that's when Talor Battle started lighting it up from three, and we couldn't get a bucket to go in at that point, and he was knocking down threes that added up pretty quick, I think. They probably went on an 11-0, 12-0 run, something like that, so I think that's where the game kind of switched, the momentum switched.

Q. Just talk about what you think is going to happen come tomorrow on Selection Sunday, middle of the season kind of a slump in there, but you've really battled back since March.
DRAYMOND GREEN: I mean, whatever is going to happen is going to happen. We can't control that. Whatever they think of our résumé, if we had enough key wins to outweigh the losses then we'll get in. But we can't really sit here and worry about what's going to happen. If we took care of business today, we wouldn't have to worry about it. So whatever happens happens, and it's in the hands of the committee now, so we just have to sit back and watch and see what happens.

Q. Kalin, when you're watching that game they played yesterday, Penn State, can you learn anything from that when it's just both teams score in the 30s?
KALIN LUCAS: Can I learn something from it? As far as the game, I really didn't watch the game actually. I mean, it was a low-scoring game, but as far as the game, I really didn't watch the game at all. I just know it was a low-scoring game.

Q. You guys shot 50 percent in the first half and then cooled off a bit in the second. Was that something Penn State did or was that just missing shots on your end?
KALIN LUCAS: It was more of us just missing shots, us just missing shots, us missing lay-ups, free throws. I missed two free throws, and I don't normally miss free throws. We got some good looks, but shots just didn't fall.

Q. Do you think that's an NCAA Tournament team you just faced out there?
COACH IZZO: Yeah, I definitely do, but I'm prejudiced because I'm in the league. I think there's a lot of teams in our league that are deserving of it because I think our league -- people forget we play 18 games in this league, and it's almost a round-robin except for two games. It gets started with other leagues sometimes who play 16 who have a lot more teams in it. But I think Penn State is definitely deserving of it, and I think Eddie has had a couple tough plays during the year, might have won another game or two, just the way some things went, Purdue and at home against Michigan when Brooks missed a game. So if you look at it that way, too, I think the committee takes those things in, and I think it's a tournament team, I really do.

Q. You mentioned the four threes that Talor had. In that stretch when he hit those, how much did that hurt you, and did you feel like that may have kind of put the game out of reach for you guys?
COACH IZZO: Well, it shouldn't have, it was that early. But I thought that was pretty well contested on most of them. Keith did a great job, one time Kebler did a great job. The turnovers really hurt us. He's going to hit some of those, he's done it every year. But we just turned it over for those lay-ups those two or three times, and then we just kind of looked like the wind got taken out of our sails, maybe especially in Kalin's case it's been a wicked couple days with the ankle and everything and what he's trying to do. You know, I don't know if that was part of it, but I didn't think we had the energy after the first ten minutes that you need, and at this -- when it's one and done time, it's like 40 minutes of energy or you're in trouble, so we didn't bring that.

Q. Obviously Talor Battle was killer, but how about the way Tim Frazier stepped up and hit some big shots, something he doesn't usually do?
COACH IZZO: Yeah, I thought Kalin was right. It's kind of been the story of our year, people hit threes against us that never hit them all year, and he did, too. He hit a three, and then he got about six or eight of those points off those turnovers.
Second half we only turned it over twice. It was a lot better. But I think it was a combination; we did miss some shots, we missed a couple lay-ups inside, but their defense, they're a very physical team. They've got size, and you almost have to pull for them because they've got four seniors that haven't been there, and the thought of what was going through their head and the job Eddie has done, I didn't pull for them during the game, but you'd like to see them be successful.
I think Battle has grown a lot over his career, and he's definitely playing the best basketball because he's not forcing things and things that I thought he might have done other years. I think he's really grown.
And I think Frazier has had something to do with that. Ed did a good job getting Frazier on the point, and I think it's made them a better team, and both have flourished because of it. Frazier just had an unbelievable game today, rebounding, assists. There wasn't one part of his game that wasn't good, and I take my hat off to him for that.

Q. Do you think that the team invested so much in what was a big win for you guys last night, probably one of your more complete games of the season, that there was a little bit of a letdown today?
COACH IZZO: Well, I talked to them about that. I hope not. I mean, these guys have played in Final Fours. Juniors and seniors have been there. Now, at the same time we knew the hunger that Penn State would have with those four seniors, but there should be no letdown with our guys when they've been in one and done time a lot. They've had to play games and get right back up. Fatigued maybe a little bit because of the one-day turnaround, just the way this year has been and the mental pressure on this team, but it surprised me a little bit.

Q. Is this team ready for the NCAA Tournament next week?
COACH IZZO: You know, I made a promise to myself that I wasn't going to beg or politic. I'm not going to -- every year there's different objectives on what people are looking for. We've done enough to get us in, and we've done enough to put us out, and I really mean that. If you look at our strength of schedule and all those things, I mean, we've done enough to put us in. But if you look at a couple of bad losses, you know, and then I think the hardest part for me is trying to figure out the first two-thirds of the year with Lucas, where was he at, and I definitely think we've been a better team in the last six, eight games. But we still have our moments where we're up and down, of course. I think you see a lot of teams are doing that.
I'm ready to accept whatever I have to accept. You know, I'm saddened that we put ourselves in a position where you're not going to know anything until it comes out. But that blame goes to nobody but us, and we're going to have to shoulder that. Do I think we could play well in it? Probably, yeah.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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