Duke beats Michigan State and is Sweet 16 Bound!
Updated: Apr 13, 2022
Survive and advance is the saying, and that is what Duke did as they came back in the last five minutes of the game to beat Michigan State by a score of 85 - 76.
Duke and Michigan State went at it for a full 40 minutes in what felt like a heavy weight boxing match. But it was the final five minutes that decided the outcome of this battle between the two Blue Bloods.
Coach K even talked about the final minutes in the post game press conference. " What a game. It was reminiscent of the Final Four games. Both teams were lights out with the effort today. We're so very proud of winning this game because we beat a heck of a team, obviously as well coached as any in the country." "But my guys were so tough in those last six minutes of the game. The last four or five minutes, the defense was incredible. Jeremy hit a huge three for us, and in his drives, he willed that ball. He willed that ball in. They were some of the best drives I've seen as a Duke coach, really, especially in a pressure situation.
I myself, watching these last few minutes of this game felt like this team grew up so to speak in the final minutes. They pulled it together especially with the defense to get the win in Greenville. Just a couple weeks back this team had a heart breaking loss in Cameron Indoor Stadium to North Carolina. A week ago, Duke loss to Virginia Tech in the ACC Tournament championship game. Once Selection Sunday came many in the media as well as fans were questioning how far can this Duke team go. Well this Duke team grew up tonight with a huge win over another Blue Blood team in Michigan State. This game could possibly be a turning point for this team as Duke is now Sweet 16 bound and looks to be a Final Four contender after tonight.
The win against Michigan State to advance to the Sweet 16 gives Coach K his 1200th win. To close the press conference Coach K talked about the win and the hospitality of Greenville, SC.
"The 1,200 wins is substantial. Obviously, it's a lot of wins. But it's a lot of wins against quality competition, and that's what I'm most proud of. It's not just the number of wins, it's the competition that we've had in order to win. Today was a good example of it. The other thing is I've been fortunate that overall I've had good health, except for the '94/' 95 season, and I have a great school. So I have great people, good health, great family. Look, for me, one of the best moments for me was turning around and seeing all my grandkids right behind the bench, and they're crying, they're cheering. Wow, I mean, God bless how lucky -- I mean, it's so good. It's so good. So 1,200's great, but that scene was better. All right. See you in San Francisco. And by the way, just I want to thank the people who have put the tournament on here. I know they've got another game, a big game. This city is lights out with their hospitality and the people. Obviously we've enjoyed it because we've won, but we were really treated well here. Really treated well. So thank you."