You get the bad news, and you move on.

That’s what Michigan State men’s basketball did late Tuesday night when getting word about 11:15 that Virginia had to cancel the next day’s game. The Spartans flew back from Charlottesville to East Lansing on Wednesday morning, and were back practicing Wednesday afternoon for their next opponent.

That opponent is the 0-6 Oakland Golden Grizzlies. The game is at noon Sunday at Breslin Center in East Lansing.

Oakland’s Jalen Moore and Rashad Williams (Photo: Mitch Alcala, AP)

“They were all disappointed, especially Joey,” coach Tom Izzo said of Joey Hauser, who was looking forward to the matchup against brother, Sam, a Virginia star player. “But they realize that we’ve got to move forward. 

“My staff said it best after watching film on (Oakland) against Michigan (OT loss), and especially against Oklahoma State. They said, ‘Coach, this is the best 0-6 team in the history of the world.'” 

Oakland coach Greg Kampe’s response: “I would say, in the COVID world.”

Oakland had a major outbreak in its program a little more than two weeks before the season, with the heavy majority of the roster and several coaches, including Kampe, testing positive. The Golden Grizzlies only had a few practices before the shutdown, and a few more after the shutdown — before its season-opening multi-team event (MTE) at Xavier, where it lost to Xavier by 52, Toledo by 27 and Bradley by 14.

More: MSU’s Tom Izzo respects opposing viewpoints, but playing basketball is ‘best for us’

The Golden Grizzlies, using a rare zone defense because they hadn’t practiced enough on defensive sets, then took Michigan to overtime at Crisler Center, before losing.

Oakland then went to Purdue and lost badly, before hanging with Oklahoma State and Cade Cunningham, the likely No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft.

“I’m not trying to make them better than they are, and I’m not trying to make them worse,” Izzo said of Oakland, specifically citing standout play of Rashad Williams (10 3-pointers against Oklahoma State), big man Daniel Oladapo and JUCO transfer point guard Jalen Moore. “This team is much better than their record.”

The Michigan State-Oakland rivalry is well-documented. They’ve played 18 times since 1998, with Michigan State winning all of them, albeit some in very narrow fashion.

This is the last game for both before they start conference play, Michigan State at Northwestern on Dec. 20 and Oakland at UIC on Dec. 19-20.

Schedule shift

Izzo wants to get another nonconference game, preferably against Virginia, but that’s going to be difficult with Virginia now shut down and in quarantine because of COVID.

More likely than perhaps Virginia could be a new opponent, perhaps next week, even though it’s finals week at Michigan State.

“Whether we’ll succeed, I don’t know,” said Izzo, noting a special exemption could be needed to play finals week. “We’ve stuck KP (Kevin Pauga, MSU’s scheduling guru) back in his cave and told him to put on that hat he wears, that think hat.”

Last-minute games are becoming a norm this season in college basketball. Michigan was able to schedule a game against Toledo in the hours after North Carolina State had to cancel its ACC/Big Ten Challenge game. Detroit Mercy picked up a game with Notre Dame after Notre Dame had two different opponents cancel.

Time will tell if MSU can do the same, even if it’s not Virginia — though Virginia, obviously, would be most ideal for the Hauser family. 

“A lot of people are dealing with a lot tougher things than we’re dealing with,” said Izzo, whose team had its regular team dinner on Tuesday night and players were back in their hotel rooms when the text came about an impromptu team meeting around 11:15 p.m. with Izzo delivering the bad news. “I was bummed out, but I’m not feeling sorry for us.

“They know that things can happen that we have no control over.”

Slam dunks

Izzo stopped by football practice to watch Mel Tucker’s team this week, as it prepares to play at Penn State on Saturday in the regular-season finale before next week’s crossover game.

“I wanted to see Mel, just see how they’re doing with it, 120 players out there,” said Izzo, a football coach at heart who played football in college, and once upon a time was rumored to be in line to MSU’s coach. “I was really impressed.”

… Izzo talked about his 11-day quarantine in his basement during his COVID battle.

“Retirement got pushed back five years. What am I gonna do, sit in a basement?” Izzo said. “Retirement for me is way down the line. I’ve learned something from this.

“I hate my basement. … I don’t plan on spending any time there till spring.”

… Izzo said it won’t just be Michigan State’s players who aren’t spending time with family on Christmas, when the Spartans play Wisconsin. He won’t get to either, so he plans to do what so many of us are doing — planning a Christmas in May or June or July.

“That’s a promise,” he said.

Oakland at No. 4 Michigan State

Tip-off: Noon Sunday, Breslin Center, East Lansing

TV/radio: FS1/760

Records: Oakland 0-6; Michigan State 5-0

Outlook: Oakland is winless through six games, but with Michigan State, still will collect checks worth $350,000, more than enough to pay coach Greg Kampe’s base salary. … The teams have met 18 times since 1998, with Michigan State 18-0. … This is the last game before each team starts conference play.

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Twitter: @tonypaul1984