PHOENIX (AP) – Watching his team commit the same mistake for the third time in less than a minute, Louisville coach Rick Pitino screams, “Stop!,” shakes his head in disgust and moves the players into the position he expected them to be in.
Michigan State coach Tom Izzo marches around players much taller than he is, clapping and barking out orders, imploring them to run faster, work harder as they race around the court.
On the same court about an hour apart, Pitino and Izzo provided a few dozen fans at US Airways Center a glimpse into what it’s like to play for two of the most demanding – and successful coaches – in college basketball.
“Both of them really demand toughness,” Michigan State forward Draymond Green said Wednesday. “And both of them are no-nonsense guys who expect everything to be perfect.”
Thursday’s West Regional semifinal has the makings of a sizzler in the desert, the fast and furious Cardinals trying to run past the morphable Spartans.
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