Originally posted on Fox Sports Detroit  |  By DANA WAKIJI  |  Last updated 11/15/13
EAST LANSING, MICH. -- Maybe the Michigan State Spartans had a bad case of Kentucky hangover, but there was no one celebrating a victory over Columbia Friday night. Naturally, MSU coach Tom Izzo was pretty despondent after a 62-53 comeback victory over Columbia, hardly even the best team in the Ivy League. "We seemed a little selfish and this is not a selfish team but that means we didn't respect our opponents, we didn't respect the game, and we really deserved to get beat," Izzo said. Point guard Keith Appling, who finished with three points, six assists and one rebound while holding Columbia's top scorer, Grant Mullins, to zero points, put it succinctly. "If we continue this way, our season's not going to go the way we want it to and Coach is not going to be happy," Appling said. "When Coach is not happy, it's not a good environment around here." Said Gary Harris: "If we lose this game, it's a bigger loss than it is a bigger win than we had against Kentucky." Izzo expects a lot out of his players, regardless of where they stand in the national rankings. He expects energy, effort and rebounding. But the Lions out-rebounded the Spartans, 31-27. That's not what Izzo wanted or expected after the Spartans beat the Kentucky Wildcats 78-74 despite being out-rebounded, 44-32. "More than anything, I didn't like the energy or the heart of our guys and I don't say that very often," Izzo said. "Rebounding here is a religion, and maybe this team wants to change that, so I've got to make sure that doesn't happen." Adreian Payne had 26 points, 11 rebounds, three blocks and two steals, but he wasn't thrilled with his night, despite the fact that the Lions had no answer for him. "I think it's good that we still found a way to win the game," Payne said. "(But) we're too good of a team to have games like this. It's just unacceptable." The Spartans know that if their effort and energy are there, they can play with any team in the country. They proved it against the Wildcats. But no team is so talented that it can just take the night off and expect to win. "This is definitely a lesson learned," Branden Dawson said. "We won (Friday) but it doesn't really feel like we won. "We came in here and looked at Columbia, I think we played down to our competition. We underestimated them coming off a great game, we beat a No. 1 team, I say we kind of got a little logy, didn't come out with enough energy. I think we just came out like we didn't care." Izzo and his team leaders will make sure to nip this lackluster effort in the bud. It's far too early to worry about the Spartans but it's not too early to make the fixes that need to be made. And it's always a little easier to make those fixes after a win. "Once in a while you've got to win a game when you deserve to get beat," Izzo said. "Maybe that's the mark of a decent team. We haven't proven enough to be considered a great team. We're a doggone good team with a long, long way to go."
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