Two-Minute Drill: Izzo, Buckeyes Explain Final Play
By Brandon Castel
EAST LANSING, Mich. — Having backup point guard Shannon Scott heave a desperation three with just under four seconds still on the clock is not exactly the way Thad Matta drew up his final play on Saturday.
Here’s what Matta and his players had to say about the final play of Michigan State’s 59-56 win over Ohio State at the Breslin Center, along with quotes and thoughts from MSU head coach Tom Izzo.
* Izzo: "I don't know if it was pretty to watch, but it was a hell of a game."
* Izzo: "I thought we did a decent job on Thomas. He made some tough ones and ones that weren't so tough."
* Izzo said the gameplan was to hold down Ohio State's superstar (Thomas) and let the other four guys beat them.
* Izzo: "I don't know if anyone should enjoy playing against Craft. He is a hell of a defender. He comes at you."
* Izzo: "This is why you play, man. This is a classic game. It was a war and we survived it."
* Izzo said if OSU would have given the ball to Thomas on the last play they would have immediately fouled him.
* Izzo said they were only going to foul on the last play if it was Thomas or they fumbled the ball.
* Izzo said he thought of Thomas as a volume shooter before this year, but he's grown into a lot more than that.
* Izzo said he never fouls at the end of the game like that, but he was going to have them foul Thomas out of respect for his game.
*Matta on not getting it to Deshaun on the last play: "Michigan State knew we were going to go to him."
*Matta on Thomas: "He was smooth, he was efficient tonight. It was a heck of a performance by him."
*Matta said they did anticipate the MSU foul. They wanted the drive and kick from Shannon on the last play.
* Thomas made it sound like Shannon Scott did what the coaches told him to do on the last shot.
* Thomas said the coaches told Shannon to race down the floor and be ready for a foul. If he felt the foul coming, throw something up from behind the arc.
* Thomas said he was emotionally upset after the game but Evan Ravenel and Amir Williams calmed him down.
* Thomas said he was sad they lost and he wanted to take the shot, but he went over to Shannon and told him not to worry about it.
* Thomas said they expected Payne to cover him and they wanted to wear him out chasing DT off screens on the perimeter.
* Thomas said he wanted to be more aggressive tonight and show he has more to his game.
* Craft said they're OK with Deshaun being a little more selfish when he's playing the way he did tonight. They have to help him, though.
* Craft said he talked to Shannon Scott in the locker room after the game. Told him that last play isn't why they lost the game.
* Craft said the Buckeyes are getting closer to being the team they want to be. Can't start games like they did tonight.
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