MSU moments rank among best in March Madness history

As a part of its 75 years of March Madness celebration, the NCAA has released some lists pertaining to top moments, teams and players in the history of the event. A few Michigan State items were on the list.

Magic Johnson and Mateen Cleaves both were listed as being among the top 75 players in March Madness history. The 1978-79 team was listed among the top 25 teams in the history of the event, while Magic vs. Bird was considered one of the top 35 moments.

The 1978-79 team coached by Jud Heathcote finished 26-6 and defeated Indiana State 75-64 in the NCAA title game in Salt Lake City, Utah. Indiana State was unbeaten and the top seed.

Magic scored 24 points and had seven rebounds and five assists in that title game, while Bird had 19 points, 13 rebounds, two assists and five steals. Magic was named the Most Outstanding Player of that Final Four.

Magic also was named to the All-Region team. He had a triple-double in the opening round of the tournament against Lamar.

During its 1979 title run, the Spartans won each of their games by at least 11 points. They opened with the 95-64 win over Lamar, then beat LSU 87-71 and topped Notre Dame 80-68 (Greg Kelser scored an MSU NCAA Tournament record 34 points in the win over the Irish) to reach the Final Four. MSU defeated Pennsylvania 101-67 in the national semifinal.

Cleaves was the Most Outstanding Player of the 2000 Final Four after leading the Spartans to their second national championship. Cleaves, who injured his ankle during the title game, finished with 18 points and four assists in the clinching 89-76 win over Florida. He also was named to the All-Regional team after aiding MSU’s run to the Final Four.

As a junior, Cleaves also helped the Spartans reach the 1999 Final Four. He had 12 points and 10 assists in the 68-62 loss to Duke in the national semifinal. Cleaves made the All-Regional team after helping the Spartans reach the Final Four.

The complete list of March Madness moments can be found here - http://www.ncaa.com/news/ncaa/marchmadness75/2012-12-10/ncaa-honors-all-time-greats-part-75-years-march-madness-celebrat#TEAMS

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17 Responses to MSU moments rank among best in March Madness history

  1. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    So what you are saying is that it was/is Special K’s accomplishment to get South Niles CC permanently off the Spartan Basketball Schedule. YEA.

  2. avatar msu76 says:

    Great as MSU’s tournament success has been, the clock at Kemper Arena & Kenny Anderson’s shot after the buzzer belong on the list of highlights. (lowlights?) You could call it ancient history, but Jud should have had 3 final fours.

  3. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    Oh this is just great, Couch that guru of sports information, has decided to waste the time of the local population of Mid-Michigan with news of east coast basketball league shenanigans. I know everyone is all a twitter with anticipation of his sage opinion – NOT. What a wast of electrons. (and breathable air, as long as I’m talking about Cheese-its.

  4. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    Sorry to hear that Coach Heathcote won’t be there to keep EJ in line (who will be attending)

    Speedy recovery, Coach!

  5. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    I’ll put this link here because once again the Spartans are being dissed by the 4 letter network ( I can’t tell if TCU is too). They list stats at the top of the review page which seem to be from this year, than on the right bottom of the page they list stats that are purported to be from this year, but they are NOT. Last time I check Capt Kirk was winning games for Washington and KMart was returning punts and catching TD’s in Houston. They are about as competent over there as Cheese-it is over here.

    • avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

      Well dumbie, put the link:


      I mean it just makes you wonder what they base their opinions on: Cracker we know bases his on what he had seen in MAC games for 7 years, what about these so called “sports leaders”? They’re getting paid a ton of cash to get it right, sad, very sad. Loads and loads of cannon fodder in Bristol, Conn.

  6. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    I checked when I got going this morning, just looked out the window actually, and the sun had risen, there was no apocalyptic landscape, and all my electronics were still working. Guess the Mayans just ran out of ink, after all.

  7. avatar GoSt8Go says:

    I’m sure it’s just an interpretation issue, some “expert” will realize the fox pose and re-estimate. Probably 2 years from now. Isn’t this about the 3rd or 4th guess?

    • avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

      The first one was 12-21, I think. It’s all the nut cases like the folks in SanDiego years ago who were all dead after drinking something that was going to “beam them up” or some such. Or Cheese-it talking about small eastern schools forming a basketball league, just inane.

  8. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    Did ya hear the one about the beat writer who had to pay regular admission price to get into the game Friday Night? Yup, you got it Cheese-it. He has stabbed one too many in the back on his rise to the bottom.

  9. avatar USMCSpartan(Ret.) says:

    Now that a real media outlet has put up a story about JP’s choice’s being narrowed to Duck and the Spartans, I don’t think he’ll be seen publicly until he makes the announcement. He’s getting pretty tired of being hounded by the folks from Podunk, North Cacalacki and other places. (folks, I’ve been to the Raleigh-Durham area, wow, you think Michigan has some depressed towns.)

  10. avatar Superstate says:

    My gut feeling on Parker’s decision will be MSU over Duke. Reasoning, his parents and friends can follow his collegiate career in the midwest. Closer to the Big Ten cities and thus, his parents could attend all of his away games from Breslin. Plus, Coach Izzo has put in an enormous amount of effort and we all know that Coach Izzo’s way is the right way! Hey, I do not even need a journalist degree like some MAC reporters to have this opinion!

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