ROSEMONT, Ill. – When will Tom Izzo’s Hall of Fame career come to a close at Michigan State?
That’s not something Izzo could answer Wednesday at Big Ten media day, but he knows another national title would make that decision much easier when the time comes.
Izzo’s Spartans were the last Big Ten team to cut down the nets at the 2000 Final Four. He’s going on 25 years as head coach in East Lansing.
“I’d like to get that second one sometime,” Izzo said. “I don’t think I need to win another one to validate what I’ve done. I think I have to win another one to validate what I want. That’s different.”
Michigan State is the preseason favorite not only to win the Big Ten, but Izzo could have the No. 1 national ranking to open the season. Senior point guard Cassius Winston was also named Big Ten preseason player of the year Wednesday.
The Spartans made their eighth Final Four under Izzo last year in Minneapolis. There’s a good chance they will have many more shots to add to Izzo’s legacy with another national championship before he calls it quits.
“I like where I’m at right now,” he said. “We’ve really been pretty consistent. That means a lot to me. It’s easy to have a really good team, or a good couple years. But if you can consistently stay competing where every year you have a chance to win the league or every year you have a chance to go deep in the [NCAA] tournament, I couldn’t ask for more in my career. This year I’m going to ask a little more for my career.”
All-Big Ten preseason
Winston, the reigning Big Ten player of the year, was joined on the all-league preseason team (selected by a media panel) by fellow Spartan Xavier Tillman, Penn State’s Lamar Stevens, Maryland’s Anthony Cowan Jr. and Jalen Smith, Michigan’s Zavier Simpson, Ohio State’s Kaleb Wesson, Illinois’ Ayo Dosunmu, Iowa’s Joe Wieskamp and Purdue’s Nojel Eastern.