Nebraska Postgame Notes
*-Dylan Talley 28 points was a career high, betting the 27 points he had against Kent State on Nov. 24. It is his team-high fifth 20-point game this season and second in Big Ten play.
*-Nebraska falls to 0-8 against ranked teams and eight of the Huskers 14 losses have been vs. ranked opponents.
*-Shavon Shields posted his first career double-double with 19 points - all in the second half - and a career-high 13 rebounds. His previous career high was nine rebounds at Ohio State on Jan. 2, 2013. Prior to tonight, the last double-double by a Husker freshman was Aleks Maric (13 points, 12 rebounds) at Iowa State on Feb. 27, 2005.
*-Ray Gallegos went without a 3-pointer for only the third time in 26 games. The last was against Wisconsin on Jan. 6, 2013.
*-Michigan State's 12 blocked shots was one shy of the Devaney Center record by an opponent (13, Kansas State, 2/15/97)
Michigan State Head Coach Tom Izzo
"This was a game I was concerned about. Tim (Miles) does a great, great job. I think you could ask these guys. Defensively, they're solid. They do great things offensively, the movement he gets. Gallegos just missed some shots, and he missed some good shots. I really thought Shields, he must love us because he's played well against us both times. Talley's played very well, too. I think both of those guys are going to be really good players. I was really proud of Keith (Appling). His 3 for 11 was not indicative of how he played. The way he ran our team today, the defense he played, the way he pushed the ball, I thought he did a great job. Then Derrick (Nix) and Adreian (Payne) were phenomenal inside. They got into a comfort zone where we could go in there. Both of them are making their free throws, both of them are kicking the ball out well. Because of that, we got Gary Harris more involved in the second half. He was in foul trouble the first half. But give credit to Nebraska because they sure didn't quit."
On the team's reaction to Nebraska's rally early in the second half
"I feared it the whole time. I feared it from late Tuesday night, to be honest with you. It's just human. This team is not mature enough yet, as I learned this week. It's not a mature enough team in some ways to handle all these different things. All in all, we just try to talk them through a lot of things. We try to hold them as accountable as we can, but this time of year, it's difficult. The good news that I told my staff is that now, you don't get up at a high, high level every game. You get beat. You're not maybe gonna get beat, you're gonna get beat. Some ways, it's easier to coach. I've watched Nebraska a lot and, in some ways, like I said, some guys are shooting bad, but some of it was Tim, too. It wasn't just us. They did a good job. Defensively, it's a hard team to drive on. All the things that Dwayne Stevens did in the sky reporting was right on the money. They were a very solid basketball team. I don't know why they didn't rebound as well or why we rebounded so well. Nix is right, we've been harping on it as well."
On his relationship with Nebraska Head Coach Tim Miles
"My assistant Dan Fife knew him a lot better than I did. I'd met him a couple of times. I just think he's the guy for your program when I see that new building going up. This guy's got energy. I've been on the road with him recruiting, he's phenomenal. He's got a great personality. I think he's a damn good coach. It's hard to have all those things and still be a damn good coach and he is. I know what it's like to get your first Big Ten win. I've still got a picture of mine in my basement. It's kind of precious stuff. You're just happy for somebody, especially when you're going through a tough time. But Tim's going to do a good job here. I think you're going to love him. This is a nice building. It rocks pretty good. That thing got loud tonight. But 18-year-olds like the glitz and glamour and that new building's gonna help them out, too."
Nebraska Head Coach Tim Miles
On what the difference was late in the second half
"Well, we had a turnover that led to a three. Then the next possession they got an offensive rebound and scored when we weren't doubling them in the post. We were going to double them eventually, but it was too late after that. Then it was 11, and we had some pretty good looks and we missed. We just don't have much margin of error if we're going to win that game. Unfortunately just a few things went wrong in that little spell and it doomed us."
On what contributed to Michigan State's good rebounding
"I think their size and physicality did. They do such a good job and that's their brand. It's what they do and we're not quite there. It's going to take recruiting help and it's going to take tough-mindedness. I tried to play big and we just couldn't. I don't like the feel of us big. I don't have any diagnosis, I just didn't like it. That's the one thing that helps when we play Brandon Ubel at the four, Andre (Almeida) at the five, then at one of the wings Shavon (Shields) or David (Rivers) or Dylan (Talley). That's a pretty good rebounding lineup for us but rebounding is one element of the game. If you look at second-chance points, we actually beat them 10 to nine. We gave them extra possessions but at the same time rebounding was a big part of the game. I don't think it was the only issue."
On Shavon Shields
"He was great. He was so good. He's fun to watch when he gets going like that, isn't he? I just kept running stuff for him because I was having a blast watching him; it was great. We could have used a couple of other guys like that, you know? Dylan was great too. I think you have to commend Dylan; he took on a real big load of the offense and did an excellent job."
On how frustrating it was to see Ray Gallegos miss all of his shots
"It seemed like it got worse. You have to stick with him; I believe in Ray. It was a bad night and he's going to have a good night the next time out, you watch. I still feel like he's going to come through like a champ next chance he gets."
On if the players were excited to only be down by one in the second half or expected to do that
"I think they were energized; I think they were excited. I think they felt like they could win and I think they felt like they should have beaten Michigan State last time, but Michigan State has a hall of fame coach and they have a great program. That's why they are Michigan State and tied for first in the league. It was tight in a game like this and they were vulnerable but they were able to find a way to win."
On the first half
"I just feel like we didn't do anything that well. I feel like we didn't play offense that well, we didn't rebound at all. They just turned it over like crazy. They turned it over 10 times. It felt like that was the only reason we were hanging around. We made some good defensive plays too, but it just appeared to me that was the only reason we were around. I felt fortunate we were only down by five."
On how important it is for the young guys to play top teams like Indiana and Michigan State
"This is my first time through. I'm like you guys. I pay attention to what everyone writes and says and it is kind of cool to listen to what is said. What's better? The league that's so brutal that every night in you are gassed at the end or is it a league that's top heavy and a team gets confidence by beating up on the guys on the bottom. A league like the Big Ten is the best thing in the world, having to go out every night and get better, and having to compete against the best no matter what. Even if it's Michigan State having to come out and grind out against us, there's no freebie tonight. I think it's great for our league to have a gauntlet like that and I think you look at players and it builds them up. They have to go out and play at the highest level every moment they are out there. I think that's just a great thing. I think that's going to allow for our league to be successful."
Freshman Forward Shavon Shields
On what he did early in the second half when he caught fire
"I hit the two jumpers in a row and then after that, there were sets to get me a shot. Those went down too. It was fortunate for those to go down, but I had good teammates setting screens to get me the ball."
On what was going right on the glass
"Just right spot, right time. That's a lot of what rebounding is, is right spot, right time. I guess that was going my way."
On if Tyronn Lue had anything to say to him
"It was great meeting him. He's from Kansas City, and I'd never met him before, so it was kind of cool. He didn't come from Kansas City but he moved to Kansas City, so it was kind of cool meeting him and everything."
On if Lue had any advice for being a freshman on the team
"I haven't really got a chance to talk to him personally. He said we could hit him up anytime and I'll be sure to take advantage of that and learn from him."
Senior Guard Dylan Talley
On if he thought Nebraska was going to take the game when they cut it to 41-40
"Sure did. That's exactly what I thought. It just turned out that they made a couple more plays than we did. It went the other way, but we felt like we had the momentum. Things just didn't go our way."