By Ashley Dunkak
CBS DETROIT - Tuesday night's game between Michigan State and Rutgers has been postponed due to a blizzard expected to hit the area. Hours before the cancellation, Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo told reporters the team had moved up its departure time to accommodate any travel issues the weather might cause.
"We're looking at getting out there, like some of you are," Izzo said earlier in the day. "We've been in touch with the Big Ten office since last night, and there's a lot of things that are problems, and we have actually changed our whole practice time. We're practicing here in a few minutes, going to miss more school and all this, but we have to get out of here earlier, so there's some concerns with the travel. They've pretty much guaranteed us if we get there we'll play the game.
"My worry is we get there and then it gets delayed and we're stuck, but it's the way of the world, it's the way it is," Izzo continued. "There's no way we can control it, so we're going to do what we can do."
A make-up date for the game has yet to be announced.
According to the Rutgers website, the university has declared a weather emergency and cancelled classes between 4 p.m. Monday and 1 p.m. Tuesday.
While Izzo has dealt with making schedule and logistical changes for weather on previous occasions, he noted the scheduled trip to New Jersey fell into a different category.
"This is a little more concerning," Izzo said. "We've got parents calling and wondering. I've been away from the [Upper Peninsula] long enough - and I'm saying this seriously, not jokingly - that it's even a little concerning for me. 30 inches of snow up there when I was growing up was just another day at work, and we had the equipment to clear it, and there was no big deal, but this can close down a city, you're talking New York, and more importantly it's the blizzard conditions and all that.
"Safety's still going to be first," Izzo added, "and that's what we said to the NCAA, or to the Big Ten."
Weather and logistics aside, Michigan State still planned on focusing on getting a win, and Izzo said the Scarlet Knights would present a challenge even though their record may not indicate it.
"As far as Rutgers goes, they've been a team that's played a lot of people close, they've lost some close games, a lot like Northwestern was doing ... a lot like Penn State was doing, and so that's the worry, that they're a very good team," Izzo said. "Got a great guard in [Myles] Mack and a great forward in [Kadeem] Jack, so the Mack 'n' Jack Show is where they're getting a lot of their points, and they're awfully good at it as far as those two players. Some of the other players have struggled a little bit, and that's why the up and down."
The Spartans (13-7, 4-3 Big Ten) currently sit sixth in the conference standings. Rutgers is below .500 overall and has a record of 2-6 in conference play.
for more features.