Tom Izzo
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Tom Izzo

Tom Izzo
US Navy 111025-N-QF368-217 Tom Izzo, head coach of the Michigan State University Spartans prepares his team for the Carrier Classic.jpg
Izzo at a practice before the Carrier Classic in 2011
Current position
TitleHead coach
TeamMichigan State
ConferenceBig Ten
Record625-241 (.722)
Annual salary$4.4 million[1]
Biographical details
Born (1955-01-30) January 30, 1955 (age 65)
Iron Mountain, Michigan
Playing career
1973-1977Northern Michigan
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1977-1979Ishpeming HS
1979-1983Northern Michigan (assistant)
1983-1995Michigan State (assistant)
1995-presentMichigan State
Head coaching record
Overall625-241
Tournaments52-21 (NCAA Division I)
2-2 (NIT)
Accomplishments and honors
Championships
Awards
Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2016 (profile)

Tom Izzo[2] (, Italian pronunciation: ['ittso]); born January 30, 1955), is an American college basketball coach who has been the head coach at Michigan State University since 1995.[3] On April 4, 2016, Izzo was elected to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.[4]

Under Izzo, Michigan State has been a successful collegiate basketball program, earning him the nickname of "Mr March" by some[5][6][7] on account of his past success in the NCAA Tournament. Izzo has led the Spartans to the 2000 NCAA Division I National Championship, the 2009 NCAA National Championship Game, eight Final Fours, nine Big Ten championships, and six Big Ten Tournament championships in his 24 years at Michigan State. The coach with the most wins in school history, Izzo's teams have earned invitations to 22 consecutive NCAA tournaments, and his teams have never had a losing season. In addition, MSU set the Big Ten record for the longest home court winning streak. These accomplishments led analyst Andy Katz at ESPN to deem Michigan State the top college basketball program for the decade from 1998 to 2007.[8]

Izzo is currently the longest-tenured coach in the Big Ten Conference, and his teams are often recognized for their rebounding prowess and defensive tenacity. He has won four national coach of the year awards and maintains a considerable coaching tree--several of his former assistants are currently head coaches at other Division I schools. Izzo has won nine regular-season conference titles, tied for the third most in conference history. He has also won the most Big Ten Tournament titles (six) in conference history. Izzo is second all-time in Big Ten wins (299 through 2020), trailing only Bob Knight.[9]

Biography

Playing career

Izzo was born and raised in Iron Mountain in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, near the border of Wisconsin. In his hometown he met best friend and former NFL head coach Steve Mariucci. Both he and his friend attended Iron Mountain High where they were teammates on the football, basketball and track teams. At Northern Michigan University in Marquette, where they were roommates, Izzo played guard for the men's basketball team from 1973 to 1977. In his senior season, he set a school record for minutes played and was named a Division II All-American.

Early coaching career

After graduating from Northern Michigan, Izzo was head coach at Ishpeming High School for one season. He then took an assistant coaching job at Northern Michigan University from 1979 to 1983. Izzo was then named a part-time assistant at Michigan State in September 1983. After a short two-month stay in 1986 as an assistant coach at University of Tulsa, Izzo returned to Michigan State when assistant Mike Deane left to become head coach at Siena College. Prior to the 1990-91 season, then coach Jud Heathcote elevated Izzo to associate head coach. After Heathcote's retirement following the 1994-95 season and upon both Heathcote and the Michigan State Athletic Director's recommendation, Izzo was named the new head coach of men's basketball for MSU.[10]

Head coach at Michigan State

Izzo and John Calipari of Kentucky, the two highest paid college coaches in 2012[11]

Hired as head coach at Michigan State in 1995, Izzo is currently the longest-tenured basketball coach in the Big Ten Conference. He became the coach with the most wins in school history after winning his 341st game on November 29, 2009, to surpass Heathcote.[12] In his first two seasons as head coach, Izzo went 9-9 finishing 6th and 7th in the conference and failed to make the NCAA Tournament. In 1998, MSU's record in conference improved to 13-3 and Izzo won the first of his nine regular-season Big Ten championships. 1998 also saw Michigan State begin a streak of 22 straight NCAA Tournament appearances, which is the 3rd longest current streak among Division I teams. Izzo has a record of 52-20 in the NCAA Tournament. In 1999, Izzo won his first of six Big Ten Tournament titles, and went to his first Final Four, the first of three straight Final Four appearances, joining Krzyzewski and Ben Howland as the only three coaches who have made three consecutive Final Fours since the NCAA Tournament bracket expanded to 64 teams in 1985. In the instate rivalry with Michigan, Izzo's official record against the Wolverines is 24-14, although Michigan vacated five of their wins in the series at the start of his head coaching career.

In 2000, Izzo led MSU to its second NCAA national championship with an 89-76 win over Florida. Eighty-two percent of his players who completed their eligibility left MSU with a degree. Over the years, Izzo has been pursued by the Atlanta Hawks, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, and New Jersey Nets for head coaching jobs.[13][14][15] After a brief flirtation with Cleveland, on June 15, 2010, Izzo reported to the Michigan State University's Board of Trustees that he would remain head coach of Michigan State, in which he stated he was "a Spartan for life."[16]

Izzo fell short of obtaining his second national championship in 2009, losing to North Carolina 89-72. His streak of three straight Final Four appearances from 1999 to 2001 is the third-longest of all time, and his six Final Four appearances in the years 1999-2010 were matched by no other team in college basketball.

In 2013, Izzo was voted as the fifth angriest coach in college basketball by USA Today Sports, an honor that he cherishes.[17]

On November 26, 2015, Izzo won his 500th career game, all with Michigan State, with a win over Boston College in the Wooden Legacy.[18] On January 28, 2016, Izzo won his 513th career game moving him into second place past Gene Keady all time for wins by a coach in the Big Ten.[19] He trails only Bob Knight.[19]

On March 18, 2016, MSU suffered what was, at the time, perhaps the single greatest upset in NCAA Tournament history when No. 15 seeded Middle Tennessee defeated the No. 2 seeded Spartans 90-81.[20] It was believed that MSU was the equivalent of a No. 1 seed and Vegas odds had them pegged the favorite to win the title. Middle Tennessee led from start to finish and held off repeated Michigan State threats to take the lead. Despite that, Izzo stated that the team "resurrected me".[21]

On October 13, 2016, Izzo won the Dean Smith Award which is awarded to "an individual in college basketball who embodies the spirit and values of the late North Carolina coaching great.".[22]

Izzo led the 2018-2019 Spartans to a 32-7 overall record, his fifth 30-win season, and 19th season with 20+ wins, nearly triple his predecessor's seven 20-win campaigns; the team reached the Final Four for the eighth time under Izzo. On October 21, 2019, at the outset of Izzo's 25th season leading the Spartans, Michigan State was named the preseason No. 1 team in The Associated Press Top 25 men's college basketball preseason poll for the first time in program history, dating to the beginning of the AP poll in 1948. [23]

Hall of Fame

On April 4, 2016, Izzo was named to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.[24] Izzo chose former Maryland head coach Gary Williams to introduce him at the Hall of Fame ceremony.[25] He was inducted into the Hall of Fame on September 9, 2016.[26]

In the Fall of 2016, Izzo was named to the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan (BCAM) Hall of Fame. [27]

Coaching philosophy

We'll play anybody, anyplace, anytime. It doesn't matter, morning, noon or night, and it doesn't matter who it is.

Tom Izzo [28]

Izzo's teams are known for strong guard play, toughness and rebounding. Izzo is famed for his "war" rebounding drill, in which the players wear football helmets and shoulder pads.[29] His motto is "Players Play - Tough Players Win".[30] His other coaching philosophies include, "he doesn't determine playing time, players do" and "A player-coached team is better than a coach-coached team." Izzo is also known for scheduling extremely tough non-conference schedules as preparation for the NCAA tournament in March.

High School Player Recruiting

High School All-Americans

Eighteen High School All-Americans have played for Tom Izzo at MSU:

M = McDonald's All-Americans; J = Jordan Brand All-Americans

Mr. Basketball

14 different Mr. Basketball winners have played (or will play) for Tom Izzo at MSU.

Mr. Basketball of Michigan

Illinois

Indiana

Minnesota

  • 2006: Isaiah Dahlman, Braham

College player development

National Player of the Year Awards

Under Izzo, two Spartans have earned National Player of the Year awards:

College All-America honors

Under Izzo, Spartans that have earned All-America honors:

All-Big Ten

Under Izzo, six different players have been named Big Ten Player of the Year. 13 different players have earned first team All-Big Ten conference recognition while 17 have been named All-Big Ten second team..

Big Ten Player of the Year

First Team

Second Team

Sixth Man of the Year

Freshman of the Year

Defensive Player of the Year

NBA player development

NBA Draft

Since he took over as head coach, 20 players have been selected in the NBA draft, with 11 of those players being drafted in the first round. The former players under Tom Izzo who have been selected in the NBA draft are: [32]

Undrafted players to appear in the NBA

NFL Draft

Two former Spartan basketball players have joined the National Football League after the conclusion of their college basketball careers.

NBA championships

Other basketball endeavors

USA basketball

Izzo was head coach of the USA Basketball men's team that took 4th place at the 2003 Pan American Games. Prior to that he was assistant coach of the team that had a 5-0 record and won the gold medal at the 2001 Goodwill Games. Izzo served on the Collegiate Committee of USA Basketball's 2005-2008 Quadrennium Committees.[33]

Operation Hardwood

In 2005 and 2006, Izzo participated in Operation Hardwood, in which college coaches went to Kuwait military camps to coach basketball teams of American service members. Among the other coaches were Tubby Smith, Gary Williams, and Rick Barnes. In 2005, Izzo's team won the tournament championship.

Marriage and family

Tom Izzo has been married to his wife, Lupe Marinez Izzo, since 1992. They have a daughter, Raquel, and an adopted son, Steven. Steven is a Walk-on player for his father at Michigan State.[34][35]

Head coaching record

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Michigan State Spartans (Big Ten Conference) (1995-present)
1995-96 Michigan State 16-16 9-9 7th NIT Second Round
1996-97 Michigan State 17-12 9-9 T-6th NIT Second Round
1997-98 Michigan State 22-8 13-3 T-1st NCAA Division I Sweet 16
1998-99 Michigan State 33-5 15-1 1st NCAA Division I Final Four
1999-00 Michigan State 32-7 13-3 T-1st NCAA Division I Champion
2000-01 Michigan State 28-5 13-3 T-1st NCAA Division I Final Four
2001-02 Michigan State 19-12 10-6 5th NCAA Division I Round of 64
2002-03 Michigan State 22-13 10-6 T-3rd NCAA Division I Elite Eight
2003-04 Michigan State 18-12 12-4 T-2nd NCAA Division I Round of 64
2004-05 Michigan State 26-7 13-3 2nd NCAA Division I Final Four
2005-06 Michigan State 22-12 8-8 T-6th NCAA Division I Round of 64
2006-07 Michigan State 23-12 8-8 T-7th NCAA Division I Round of 32
2007-08 Michigan State 27-9 12-6 4th NCAA Division I Sweet 16
2008-09 Michigan State 31-7 15-3 1st NCAA Division I Runner-Up
2009-10 Michigan State 28-9 14-4 T-1st NCAA Division I Final Four
2010-11 Michigan State 19-15 9-9 T-4th NCAA Division I Round of 64
2011-12 Michigan State 29-8 13-5 T-1st NCAA Division I Sweet 16
2012-13 Michigan State 27-9 13-5 T-2nd NCAA Division I Sweet 16
2013-14 Michigan State 29-9 12-6 T-2nd NCAA Division I Elite Eight
2014-15 Michigan State 27-12 12-6 T-3rd NCAA Division I Final Four
2015-16 Michigan State 29-6 13-5 2nd NCAA Division I Round of 64
2016-17 Michigan State 20-15 10-8 T-5th NCAA Division I Round of 32
2017-18 Michigan State 30-5 16-2 1st NCAA Division I Round of 32
2018-19 Michigan State 32-7 16-4 T-1st NCAA Division I Final Four
2019-20 Michigan State 19-9 11-6
Michigan State: 625-241 (.722) 299-129 (.699)
Total: 625-241 (.722)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

Current through December 29, 2019

See also

References

  1. ^ "NCAA Salaries". USA Today. Retrieved 2018.
  2. ^ Hogan, John (July 19, 2008). "Sunday Profile: Tom Izzo, Da Hooper". Grand Rapids Press. Archived from the original on July 31, 2008. Retrieved 2016.
  3. ^ [1] Michigan State's Tom Izzo is college hoops' best coach, bar none Retrieved January 23, 2011
  4. ^ Wire, SI. "Shaq, Iverson, Ming headline Hall of Fame class". www.si.com. Retrieved 2016.
  5. ^ "Reiter than You - CBS Sports Radio".
  6. ^ Auerbach, Nicole (March 14, 2014). "Michigan State's Tom Izzo is Mr. March". USA Today.
  7. ^ Lansing State Journal, and Detroit Free Press, Mr. March (Pediment Books, 2015).
  8. ^ Katz, Andy (May 7, 2007). "Spartans' performance stacks up against anyone's". ESPN.com. ESPN. Retrieved 2009.
  9. ^ "Tom Izzo moved up to No. 2 in all-time Big Ten wins but didn't like how he did it". MLive.com. Retrieved 2018.
  10. ^ Tom Izzo Biography Archived July 30, 2012, at Archive.today CoachIzzo.com Retrieved June 19, 2010
  11. ^ Tom Van Riper (March 5, 2012). "The highest-paid college basketball coaches". Forbes. Retrieved 2012.
  12. ^ Izzo sets Michigan State record for wins as Spartans cruise CBS Sports. Retrieved June 19, 2010
  13. ^ Report: Hawks make offer to Izzo" CNNSI.com, May 12, 2000, retrieved August 7, 2006
  14. ^ "Izzo not interested in Raptors, plans to stay put Archived April 21, 2005, at the Wayback Machine" by Kelly Theiser, The State News, June 15, 2004, retrieved August 7, 2006
  15. ^ "Tom to Tucson: Izzo Top Candidate for Arizona Job" by Chris Domschke "The Beardown" "www.thebeardown.com" November 14, 2008, retrieved November 21, 2008
  16. ^ IZZO STAYS A SPARTAN WLNS-TV 6 Lansing, Retrieved June 15, 2010.
  17. ^ "The 10 angriest coaches in college basketball". USA Today.
  18. ^ "Izzo wins 500th, fueled by Valentine triple-double". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2015.
  19. ^ a b "Izzo cherishes chance to pass 'unlucky' Keady in B1G wins". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 2016.
  20. ^ Rutherford, Mike. "Middle Tennessee State's win over Michigan State is the biggest upset in NCAA Tournament history". SBNation.com. Retrieved 2016.
  21. ^ "Izzo: "They resurrected me"". SpartanTailgate. Retrieved 2016.
  22. ^ "Spartans' Tom Izzo wins Dean Smith Award". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 2016.
  23. ^ "Spartans No. 1 in AP preseason poll for 1st time". ESPN.com. October 21, 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  24. ^ "'It's surreal': MSU's Izzo makes Hall of Fame". Detroit News. Retrieved 2016.
  25. ^ "Former Maryland coach Gary Williams to introduce Tom Izzo at Hall of Fame enshrinement". Retrieved 2016.
  26. ^ "After making the Hall of Fame, only one goal remains for Tom Izzo". Retrieved 2016.
  27. ^ https://www.bcam.org/awards-archive/view-hall-of-fame-inductees/
  28. ^ McNeill, Kevin (November 19, 2005). "Maui Invitational: Strength of Schedule". collegehoops.net. Retrieved 2009.
  29. ^ Shelton, Gary. "Spartans are bruisers, and proud of it". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 2009.
  30. ^ Ken Mannie; Mike Vorkapich. "Spartan Basketball - Training With a Football Mentality". Coach and Athletic Director. Scholastic Corporation. Archived from the original on May 9, 2006. Retrieved 2009.
  31. ^ "Michigan Mr. Basketball: Clarkston's Foster Loyer wins in runaway vote". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 2018.
  32. ^ Spartans in the NBA Archived January 19, 2013, at Archive.today CoachIzzo.com. Retrieved June 19, 2010
  33. ^ "USA Basketball: USA Basketball 2001-2004 Quadrennium Committees". January 18, 2002. Archived from the original on December 29, 2005. Retrieved 2009.
  34. ^ "Tom Izzo". www.msuspartans.com. Retrieved 2018.
  35. ^ "Tom Izzo's Wife, Lupe Marinez Izzo". www.playerwives.com. Retrieved 2018.

External links


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