Sports

Michigan State's Tom Izzo wants to prove people right after trying to prove them wrong in past

Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo yells toward the court against Harvard in the first half during the third round of the NCAA men's college basketball tournament in Spokane, Wash., Saturday, March 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo yells toward the court against Harvard in the first half during the third round of the NCAA men's college basketball tournament in Spokane, Wash., Saturday, March 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)  (The Associated Press)

Michigan State coach Tom Izzo hopes he has not changed much since succeeding Jud Heathcote nearly 20 years ago.

Izzo says there's one way he's different for sure.

The national championship coach with six Final Four appearances acknowledges wanting to prove everyone wrong in the past.

Now, Izzo says he wants to prove everybody right. Or, at least those people, including President Barack Obama, who have picked his team to win it all.

The fourth-seeded Spartans will face top-seeded Virginia on Friday night in New York.

Michigan State is in the round of 16 for the sixth time in the last seven years — the only school to pull off that feat — and for the 12th time in 17 years under Izzo.