1978–79 Michigan State Spartans men's basketball team
|1978–79 Michigan State Spartans men's basketball|
|Big Ten Regular Season Champions|
|NCAA Men's Division I Tournament, Champions|
|Conference||Big Ten Conference|
|1978–79 record||26-6 (13-5 Big Ten)|
|Head coach||Jud Heathcote|
|Assistant coach||Bill Berry|
|Assistant coach||Fred Paulsen|
|Assistant coach||Dave Harshman|
|Home arena||Jenison Fieldhouse|
As great as Indiana State’s Larry Bird was, he met his match in Magic Johnson, the Michigan State sophomore point guard who led the Spartans to the national championship. Johnson was a unique player who made his teammates better, and along with Bird, he helped revolutionize the game. Their rivalry started in college and continued into the NBA, helping basketball reach new levels of popularity all along the way.
Regular season↑Jump back a section
NCAA basketball tournament
Michigan State advanced to the championship game and faced the Indiana State Sycamores, which was led by senior Larry Bird. In what was the most-watched college basketball game ever, Michigan State defeated Indiana State 75–64, and Johnson was voted Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four. After two years in college, in which he averaged 17.1 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 7.9 assists per game, Johnson declared himself eligible for the 1979 NBA Draft.
- Michigan State (#2 seed) 95, Lamar 64
- Michigan State 87, Louisiana State (#3 seed) 71
- Michigan State 80, Notre Dame (#1 seed) 68
- Final Four
- Michigan State 101, Pennsylvania 67
- Michigan State 75, Indiana State 64
Awards and honors
- Magic Johnson, Consensus All-American teams
- Magic Johnson, Chicago Tribune Silver Basketball
Team players drafted into the NBA↑Jump back a section
- Katz, Andy. "From coast to coast, a magical pair". ESPN. Retrieved 2008-05-06.
- "Magic Johnson Statistics". Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 12 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-13.