Thursday, October 05, 2006

National MSU Sucks Week: Let the Hating Begin

Most years, the Michigan State Spartans start out looking pretty good, then they play Michigan, lose, and enter a death spiral so gravitationally intense not even light -- or a bowl game -- can escape from it.

Pic: Illi Jima, courtesy of Matt NelsonThe death spiral began early this year, with major occurrences of Spartaneous combustion first against Notre Dame and last week, Illinois. (Really, can you get any lower than losing to Illinois? At home? During homecoming? Sparty, you been Zooked!)

Long-term, MSU's football program mostly follows this similar pattern. Game-to-game, however, they are as unpredictable a team as there is in college football. But this time, with MICHIGAN ENGLISH in the house, Javon Ringer out, and Drew Stanton banged up, it's as sure as John L. Smith is batshit insane that Michigan is going to pummel Sparty soundly.

In anticipation of said pummeling (and in recognition of my growing opinion that YouTube is the best thing to happen to the Internet since broadband), I present some choice MSU highlights.

In Ann Arbor, party games involve things like euchre, beer pong, quarters, and maybe volleyball and Frisbee in the warmer months. But in East Lansing, when State students are not out torching police cruisers, they gather to play such classics as "Try to Break the Window with Your Bare Fist or, Failing That, Your Head."

One week after the Notre Dame loss (and one hour after losing to Illinois), John L. Smith is still focusing on ND coach Charlie Weis's claim he was slapped by an MSU player in an endearing but typically crazy-ass John L. Smith way.

And finally, credit for this goes to a commenter on Every Day Should Be Saturday: "Although there is no 'I' in team, there does appear to be a big one in the middle of your field."

Bonus: If you haven't heard it yet, 1270 AM sports talk host and Spartan fan Mike Valenti's 15-minute on-air meltdown over the Notre Dame loss is pure chocolate-covered schadenfreude. I recommend listening to the whole thing, although the fireworks don't start until about 8 minutes in.

It goes to show that MSU fans' relationship to their team is akin to that of a battered wife to her aggressive but sweet-talking husband: They keep getting abused but ultimately always take the bastards back when they promise to be better.

Stay classy, East Lansing.