EAST LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — January. February. Izzo.
That's the way it's been for 22 seasons under Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo as he's guided the Spartans to seven Final Fours during that time.
But as the Spartans sit at 10-8, while just six games scheduled to play in the Big Ten, it appears that without a significant winning run during those games, the Spartans will be left out of the field of 68 for the first time since 1996-97 season.
"Of course the streak is important to me, because it's something special," Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo said.
"There's a lot of basketball left, one thing I think about this year is, I don't know what it's going to take to get in because I don't know who's going to be left standing," Izzo added.
The Spartans have a chance to start to generate some momentum at Purdue on Tuesday, followed by ranked match ups with Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio State, along with the Big Ten Tournament.
This isn't the first time the Spartans have dangerously flirted with the bubble of the tournament, but Izzo and the players have all agreed, they need to pick it up quickly if they'd like to maintain the level of success that is synonymous with Michigan State basketball.
"Every streak here since the day I came here, means something to me, every win means something to me, but I don't look at success of failure on streaks, I look at consistency over years," Izzo said.