Michigan State coach Izzo joins Final Four first timers
By JOHN MARSHALL
AP Basketball Writer
Tom Izzo drew up the perfect play at the perfect moment, sending Michigan State past mighty Duke for a spot in the Final Four.
The trip is always emotional, but Izzo has done it before. This will be his eighth Final Four and a chance for a second national championship.
The other three Final Four coaches all will be the new kids at the dance.
Chris Beard's nomadic journey struck a vein of gold in his 12th coaching stop at Texas Tech. Its opponent next Saturday in Minneapolis: Izzo's Spartans.
Virginia's Tony Bennett finally got over the hump in his 10th season with the Cavaliers, putting them in position for a different kind of history after last year's historic first-round flameout against No. 16 UMBC.
And Auburn's Bruce Pearl found some gems at Auburn after an acrimonious split with Tennessee, guiding the Tigers to Minneapolis despite the cloud of a federal investigation hanging over the program.
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