This year was just a perfect example of how the Spartans continued to prove the doubters wrong. First, their opening game against 12th seed New Mexico State was being seen as of the "big upsets of the first round" with NMS being one of the teams to upset a higher team in the first round. That was foolish, and of course the Spartans made it seem that way when they took them down with Kalin Lucas dropping a career high 25 points.
Then they had to face Greivis Vasquez and the 4th seeded Maryland Terrapins. Vasquez was supposed to prove why he's one of the best players in the NCAA and lead Maryland to a win over the Spartans. Almost everyone was picking them to win this game. Especially when Lucas went out in the first half with a torn Achilles tendon. However, the Spartans against proved the doubters wrong with Lucas's replacement (Korie Lucious) hitting the game winning shot. Into the Sweet 16 for the Spartans.
Then the world was shocked and Northern Iowa took down the mighty and favorites of the tourney, Kansas. This would seemly make the Spartans path to the Final Four much easier, but of course the doubters came strong again. They believed this Northern Iowa team would continue to ride their wave of upset magic through to the Elite Eight and take out the Spartans. Ali Farokhmanesh and Adam Koch were going to be too much with their big time outside shooting and Jordan Eglseder was going to be too much in the middle for the Spartans. However, yet again the Spartans proved victorious despite the majority of the fans in all polls picking Northern Iowa, and most of the sports analysts and bracketologists picking the UNI Panthers. On to the Elite Eight goes MSu.
Another big upset happened when the new favorite of the Midwest bracket, the Ohio State Buckeyes, lost to Tennessee. Everyone was looking forward to a MSU vs. OSU show down where the Buckeyes would be led by Evan Turner to the Final Four. But despite OSU getting taken out by the Volunteers, MSu was still the underdog. Tennessee was going to be too much for the Spartans: they were too athletic, too quick, too much on offense for the Spartans with too many athletic and feisty defenders in J.P. Prince and Wayne Chism. Chism was supposed to abuse the Spartans in the paint and dominate them down there. However, he was held to 13 points and 3 rebounds in this game. The Spartans again prove the haters and doubters wrong and move onto the Final Four.
This is Coach Tom Izzo's 6th Final Four appearance out of the last 12 years. That's a new record! He's been in the Final Four 50% of the time out of the last decade (and couple of years). If you still don't believe this guy is the greatest coach in all of the NCAA, you're just not paying attention. The guy had done it all, been able to light a fire under his players’ behinds and inspire them to play great basketball despite all the odds, all the fans, and all the analysts being against them.
The Spartans have lost their best player in the Kalin Lucas, but his replacement has been very good in his absence. Lucious has stepped up when called upon, and while he might not be making tons of plays throughout the game, he's always there when it counts. Durrell Summers is showing why he's going to become the new lead Spartan when Lucas goes to the draft, and he's been a scoring machine in the tourney. Morgan has been everywhere with his athleticism and showing he can do it all. Green is a beast in the paint! He might be short, but he's got the big body and can bang with anyone down low. The kid is only a sophomore, so watch out!
The Spartans will have to face the Butler Bulldogs in the Final Four matchup to go to the National Championship game in back to back years. I'm sure the haters and doubters will be out again, raving about how Butler took down Syracuse and Kansas State and will win the game and go to the title game. This won't surprise me, just like when they win the game go to the title game two years in a row I won't be surprised either.
So keep doubting, keep hating, and keep being an unbeliever in the Spartans, but they don't need you to believe in them to win. They have Coach Izzo, they have the hardworking, defensive, mentality that they need to be successful. I can see Coach Izzo standing in the locker-room before the game against Butler giving them a pre-game speech. He give a King Leonidas type speech to his soldiers (players) and will end with "...and tonight WE DINE IN HELL! Well, Indianapolis, but I don't see the difference." You say this madness? No, THESE ARE THE SPARTANS!!!