EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo recently set a record by leading the Spartans to 25 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.
Izzo passed former Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski for most consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances by a head coach.
The last time MSU was not in the NCAA Tournament was the 1996-97 season, which saw Arizona wins its first ever title and future NBA legend Tim Duncan win the Naismith Player of the Year Award.
The world is quite a different place since the last time the Spartans and Izzo did not qualify. Here’s a few things that have happened over the course of MSU’s historic basketball streak:
Sept. 4, 1998: Google is founded
Yes, the MSU basketball streak predates the existence of tech giant Google. And here’s a fun Michigan connection, co-founder Larry Page was born in Lansing.
Other major cultural events that the MSU tournament streak predates from 1998 include the debut of Brittney Spears, the release of the Nintendo Gameboy and the impeachment of Bill Clinton.
Oct. 26, 2000: PlayStation 2 released in North America
The Sony PlayStation 2 is the best-selling video game console of all time and helped solidify the video game industry’s status as being just as culturally relevant as film and television.
For as long as the PlayStation has been truly ubiquitous, MSU has been in the NCAA Tournament.
Feb. 4, 2004: Facebook is formed
The MSU tournament streak is older than the company most responsible for the social media revolution.
You’d have to go all the way back to the humble days before social media became a part of everyday life in order to reach the last time the Spartans missed the NCAA Tournament.
Jan. 9, 2007: Apple introduces the iPhone
The iPhone’s launch was the moment the smartphone became a must-have piece of technology that completely changed how we communicate and basically rendered landline phones obsolete.
Izzo may have had an easier time getting players to listen before the advent of this invention, but it hasn’t stifled the Spartan’s NCAA Tournament success.
March 13, 2013: Pope Francis is elected
MSU’s tournament streak has happened alongside major changes in Vatican City.
Pope Benedict XVI became Pope after Pope John Paul II’s death in 2005, and later became the first Pope to resign since 1415 in 2013. Pope Francis was then elected, becoming the first Pope from Latin America.
Oct. 8, 2015: NASA confirms water on Mars
A major scientific breakthrough when it comes to the future of space exploration. Another major breakthrough that has happened in concurrence with Izzo and Michigan State’s tournament run.
March 12, 2020: NCAA Tournament canceled due to COVID-19
Though MSU was qualified for the tournament, the Spartans did not make an appearance on the court as the 2020 NCAA Tournament was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The tournament’s cancellation was just one of countless hard to believe developments that happened that year.