The student section of Michigan State, known as the Izzone, vocally expressed their disapproval of tweets sent out from ESPN color analyst Dan Dakich on Tuesday night during a game against Ohio State. The Izzone, which repeatedly burst out in chants of “We hate Dakich,” (according to Michigan State beat writer Brendan Quinn) which didn’t please head coach Tom Izzo.
Until he found out why they were chanting it.
“I’ve got to be honest with you, I was kind of getting upset with the chants of Dakich until I got in the locker room, and I asked what was that all about?” Izzo said. “Somebody read me his tweets. Social media. And if I would have known that before the game, I would have embarrassed myself almost as much as he embarrassed himself and I would have led the chants because calling us whiners and all that is kind of unprofessional.”
Dakich, who sent out several tweets directed at Michigan State and its fans calling them “whiny” and “dumb”, didn’t sit well with the fans or Izzo himself as we saw tonight. In one specific exchange with a Michigan State fan from Feb. 8, Dakich wrote: “Sparty not only whines but now just dumb!! Couldn’t get into UM??”
That tweet, which in context (his son is a basketball player at Michigan), is funny on the surface. But the tweet, which has now been deleted, had Izzo ready to go to war and fueled a rant which lasted close to five minutes in length.
“Saying our students couldn’t get in there [Michigan],” Izzo said, “and he’s doing games for Michigan when his son is there. That is a disappointment and that is ridiculous and I think it’s funny because I’ve got no respect for him for that. You can read it, you can tweet it, you can do whatever you want with it. But Twitter got him in trouble, and I’m surprised ESPN would let somebody say something like that that works for them.
“Danny owes our fans and our students an apology. And I probably won’t get it. I’ve always gotten along with Dan, but as you know, it seems like this year a lot of people have been mad at me, but I would have loved to get in that Izzone and joined those chants if I was on Twitter. Thank God, I’m not. Thank God some of my friends are.”
Izzo admitted that although he requested an apology, he didn’t expect to get one. But it was clear in his comments after the game he wasn’t happy about his “unprofessional” tweets.
Tom Izzo’s Michigan State team, now 16-10 (8-5 in the Big Ten), cruised past Ohio State in East Lansing, 74-66.