MSU Sucker Punches Fans & Media

Who is leading before the next big debate?

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Perhaps the only thing more difficult than sporting green and white since 1966 (Star Trek premiered) is silver and blue (the Lions haven’t won a championship since 1957, the year Leave It To Beaver premiered).

Yet, with  more than 100 combined years of losing, fans remain loyal. I’m not sure if there is a book on fan loyalty but there needs to be one. What I want to know is how colleges marketed the idea to get alumni to support their Alma mater and create the rivalry’s that exist over the past decades. There is no such loyalty for high school sports. Why some 35 years after I graduated from MSU do I care if the Spartans win a football or basketball game? And when it comes to pro sports in which fans only have the city or state as their allegiance, why do fans care if their team wins or loses a game?

Analyzing our insane behavior, we really have no vested interest in being a fan. MSU charges me for tickets, parking passes, receptions and everything they can and that is after being a donor. Pro sports award their fans by selling $10 beers, $5 hot dogs and $30 parking passes. A ticket to see the Tiger’s play a regular season game is $85 yet the same people complain about our event ticket for $35. On top of that, we spend billions each year to walk around promoting our teams. I was at the MSU bookstore at last weekend’s game and people were waiting in line 30 deep to pay for stuff. There were at least 300 MSU branded items in the bookstore and we know what the margins are on them. And we buy this stuff with passion and can’t wait to put on the shirt, put on the cap, put on the tattoo on our face and walk around screaming “Go White” and “Go Green.”

Fans tailgate hours before the game. They watch the game. Then they go home to watch replays of the game. Then they tune in to sports radio to talk about the game. Then they go online to read about the game. The game. It’s all about the game.

Why?

MSU was ranked 9th pre-season. All the experts picked State to be first in our division. Experts you ask? Oh yes, what is sports without experts? Sports writers, ex-coaches, play-by-play analysts and anyone in front of an ESPN camera are classified as experts. 97.1 The Ticket is the place for fans to belt out when their team loses or heap on the praise when their team wins. We are passionate about our team.

Why?

After MSU lost its first game, then its second game, Coach Dantonio clearly expressed his view that the team was “intact” and that his vision of going to the Rose Bowl in 2012 was still “alive.” Then came Iowa. It was homecoming and perhaps one of the worst October weather days in recent history. The relentless rain, the cold biting temperature were factors that would keep normal people home to watch the game on TV. But not Spartan fans. Not Spartan loyalists since 1966. No way. I was among those fans shivering in the stands, feet soaking wet, pants soaking wet and wishing the rain would turn to snow. But I was not alone, there were more than 70,000 witnessing perhaps the worst coached team at the end of the first half and at the end of the second half. To the fans credit, many left after halftime but not all.

Why?

MSU lost  its third game and after winning 15 straight at home and winning more games over the past 3 seasons than who remembers and still no Rose Bowl appearance, this season is over. It was really over after the Notre Dame loss. Maxwell doesn’t have the talent, doesn’t have the ability to strive under pressure and is a mediocre QB. At least that’s what the experts say. But it’s too easy to blame the game on Maxwell. How about the penalties, how about the play calling by OC Dan Roushar, how about the lack of focus on special teams? In the end, everything sits on Dantonio. He knows it and if we were inside his head, we can only guess what is going on in his mind right now. He is more disappointed than any fan. He let us down.

Why?

Even in winning, pleasing fans is next to impossible UNLESS YOU WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP. Leyland is done if the Tiger’s don’t get to the Series which looks like they will. But the fans want Valverde’s scalp and if they don’t beat NY in Detroit, one can only imagine the experts take on that. Yesterday you saw the LIons win a game they should have lost. 15 penalties. 0-7 on third down conversions. Yet they won and did you see Coach Schwartz’s expression when the Lions won it? It was like they won the Super Bowl. It was crazy to watch and see. Yes, the Lions are 2-3 which is better than 1-4 but really? It’s about the game after all.

Going back to MSU, us fans got swindled and we are mad. It’s better for a losing team to lose (like the Spartans before Dantonio) because you have no expectations. But c’mon, after 6 seasons, we deserve better than this. This is an embarrassment to the fans and the media. It feels bad all the way around. And here’s the thing: Our lives won’t change if our team wins or loses, but there is certainly something to be said hanging around winners instead of losers. Winning feels good, losing feels bad. Just ask Nick Saban fans and their media and they will tell you first hand.

So yes, Spartan fans and Lions fans will continue to do what they do each and every year and that is say, “There is always next year.”

Happy Monday!

MSU: 1-0, U-M: 0-hurting bad

MSU: 1-0, U-M: 0-hurting bad

Are the Detroit Tigers For Real?

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Game 1, 2012 Season.

It was a huge opening game for MSU who has now won 15 in a row at Spartan Stadium.

They defeated a rousing Boise State team that was 72-6 since their new coach took over. And they never lost opening day.

Then again, they didn’t have #24 Le’Veon Bell who ran for more than 210 yards and more than 5X the entire run offense of Boise State.

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It was typical Spartan football who won yet another game by a touchdown or less. But it sure beats losing as U-M took its worst opening day licking since the inception of the college way back into the 1800’s. Ouch.

Speaking of winning, it was great to see several sales talent make new sales records in August: Lori F.,  Jaime D., Amanda Y., Lani B., Lori S., and Vince F.!!! And Jodi B. crossed into a new frontier flying high. Congrats to all for Makin’ It Happen!

Happy Tuesday!

MSU Finally Brings Home The Green After Winning Outback Bowl

MSU Finally Brings Home The Green After Winning Outback Bowl

Who is your favorite Michigan football team?

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It started out ugly enough. Who calls a screen play in your own end zone? It had to be a first for a college or pro team. And will most likely be the last. 2-0 Bulldogs. And just like the Lions-Packers game start, another touchdown after the punt and it was 9-0. How many 3 and outs did State endure? While our defense was outstanding, so was the team in red. And just when you couldn’t believe another long pass could be made, it was. 16-0 and halftime.

As a Spartan enduring 8 consecutive bowl losses and coming off that dreadful loss to another team in the inaugural playoff game, the last thing we could endure was yet another loss especially after another 10 game winning season. Dantonio was motivated to win his first bowl game in five and while he was the most winning MSU coach in his first five years, another bowl loss would have spelled d-o-o-m.

The second half didn’t start much better, but again, MSU defense was spot on. What was better than the pick 6? It rallied the troops and engaged the team. It was the catalyst that won the game. But after a couple missed two-point conversions, the Bulldogs performed yet another feat of magic and scored with less than five minutes to go, 27-20. Could State rally back? Nope. Punt, couple time outs and a really big stop and one more chance to tie the game. Ball on our own 15 with less than 2 minutes to go. MSU didn’t have one drive all game long, how could they manage one now?

Kirk Cousins did what he had to do, even dash for a long gain. With 16 ticks on the clock, touchdown for MSU!

In the end, MSU beat the Bulldogs 33-30 and how fitting that a blocked field goal was the difference. Special teams made plays all game long but none bigger than that one. The seniors had something to celebrate, a big feather to add to their helmet and a reason to look forward to the upcoming NFL draft. It was a sweet victory, one that took some four-and-a-half hours. I was exhausted watching the game, could you imagine playing it?

With all the BIG TEN teams losing (1-4), perhaps the pundits will finally give MSU their due. If anything, they should put us #10 or higher on the charts. Even if Michigan wins tonight, and that is a big “if”, MSU must be ranked higher than any other BIG 10 team.

The spoils go to the victors. No one deserves it more than Mark Dantonio, Kirk Cousins and the entire MSU team. Thank you for finally bringing the GREEN back to Michigan. Now that is the way to kick off a year.

Happy Tuesday!

Out Of My Mind On A Monday Mornin’

Out Of My Mind On A Monday Mornin’

How much are you going to spend for Christmas gifts this year?

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OMG! The game of the decade, way more satisfying than beating up U-M the previous week (although that was quite tasty too). Spartans surge to #9 in front of Wisconsin and Nebraska. BIG GAME next Saturday against Nebraska. STATE will win that one too. OMG!

Michigan State edges Wisconsin, 37-31

And then you have the Detroit Lions. How pathetic was that performance? No doubt Stafford has been injured since game 5 and playing injured without letting anyone know. His crushing end in the fourth quarter may be telling. But the Lions are faltering and faltering at the wrong time.

Why can we make a right turn on red but can’t go straight through on red? How many times are we sitting at an intersection with absolutely no cars coming on either side? Just think how many gallons of gas we would save.

Groupon is doing its roadshow over the next two weeks to convince investors that they are worth $11 Billion. Really? Is Groupon going to be around in a year or so?

Amazon.com not content on providing the world with just about everything is testing same day grocery delivery in Seattle.

I broke down and bought the iPhone 4S which replaces my outdated 3. Apple has once again delivered. SIRI which they acquired earlier in the year is one of the star attractions. Once again, a woman’s voice tells us what to do, how to do it and all the information we need to know. Brilliant.

How much longer will Ficano be employed? The bigger question is how can one governmental office investigate another governmental office? It seems like elected officials are only interested in staying in office as long as they possibly can, collect as much money as they possibly can, and collect enough favors so when they leave office they are well off. In regards to the voters who put them in office. . .YIKES!

What are you doing for 11.11.11? It’s going to be a BIG wedding day for sure. For one, we are going to offer the entire Cuccio line Buy 1, Get 1 FREE (limit 3 each)!

Are you into Zumba? Who dreams up these new exercise schemes?

You got to hand it to John DeJoria. Not satisfied with Paul Mitchell, he developed Patron into a powerhouse brand. Now comes the new Patron ultra-premium in a crystal bottle with even bigger margins and here comes Ultimat, the new premium vodka to compete with Grey Goose and Belvedere. And here comes Mitch, his new men’s line that is ultra-chic and targeting Crew big time.

Nostalgia is going to be the next big thing. With social unrest brewing, people will thrive for the fun and frivolity of the 50’s. But here’s the thing, there were no cell phones, texting or Facebook back then.

Happy Monday and GO STATE!

Out Of My Mind On A Monday Mornin’

Out Of My Mind On A Monday Mornin’

How much are you going to spend for Christmas gifts this year?

View Results

OMG! The game of the decade, way more satisfying than beating up U-M the previous week (although that was quite tasty too). Spartans surge to #9 in front of Wisconsin and Nebraska. BIG GAME next Saturday against Nebraska. STATE will win that one too. OMG!

Michigan State edges Wisconsin, 37-31

And then you have the Detroit Lions. How pathetic was that performance? No doubt Stafford has been injured since game 5 and playing injured without letting anyone know. His crushing end in the fourth quarter may be telling. But the Lions are faltering and faltering at the wrong time.

Why can we make a right turn on red but can’t go straight through on red? How many times are we sitting at an intersection with absolutely no cars coming on either side? Just think how many gallons of gas we would save.

Groupon is doing its roadshow over the next two weeks to convince investors that they are worth $11 Billion. Really? Is Groupon going to be around in a year or so?

Amazon.com not content on providing the world with just about everything is testing same day grocery delivery in Seattle.

I broke down and bought the iPhone 4S which replaces my outdated 3. Apple has once again delivered. SIRI which they acquired earlier in the year is one of the star attractions. Once again, a woman’s voice tells us what to do, how to do it and all the information we need to know. Brilliant.

How much longer will Ficano be employed? The bigger question is how can one governmental office investigate another governmental office? It seems like elected officials are only interested in staying in office as long as they possibly can, collect as much money as they possibly can, and collect enough favors so when they leave office they are well off. In regards to the voters who put them in office. . .YIKES!

What are you doing for 11.11.11? It’s going to be a BIG wedding day for sure. For one, we are going to offer the entire Cuccio line Buy 1, Get 1 FREE (limit 3 each)!

Are you into Zumba? Who dreams up these new exercise schemes?

You got to hand it to John DeJoria. Not satisfied with Paul Mitchell, he developed Patron into a powerhouse brand. Now comes the new Patron ultra-premium in a crystal bottle with even bigger margins and here comes Ultimat, the new premium vodka to compete with Grey Goose and Belvedere. And here comes Mitch, his new men’s line that is ultra-chic and targeting Crew big time.

Nostalgia is going to be the next big thing. With social unrest brewing, people will thrive for the fun and frivolity of the 50’s. But here’s the thing, there were no cell phones, texting or Facebook back then.

Happy Monday and GO STATE!

MSU: Go Green, Go White!

Do you favor college or pro sports more?

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OK, with the Final Four this weekend, I am very sad on one hand that MSU is not involved. They have been at 6 of the last 12. But I am kind of happy too since they haven’t won the championship in a decade.

It would be something if the #11 seed wins it all. That would be a statement.

In the end when it comes to college sports, it boils down to which college you went to. Without a doubt, universities figured out a long, long time ago how to get graduates engaged in the university long after graduation. Alumni, endowments, gifts, named buildings, scholarships, sport tickets and so much more bring in billions of revenue each year. Not to mention TV rights, heck, the Big Ten has its own cable network.

And what alumni doesn’t walk around wearing  a T-Shirt or cap on football Saturday’s? I even have a S on my license plate and pay an additional $35 a year for that Go Green!

One day I hope to have a building on MSU’s campus with my name on it. With Eli Broad already endowed in the business school, I was thinking what building would make sense. A few ideas that came to mind:

  • Gaynor building of Cosmetology. Why not institute a 4-year program on campus? This way hairdressers and nail techs can really party without having to deal with commuting. Not only will they earn their license and undergrad degree, they will have two years of apprenticeship in hand. Who cares that it will cost $60,000- that’s what student loans are for.
  • Gaynor building of Failures. It’s a proven fact that humans learn more from failure than success. As Spartans, we know first hand the agony of failure when it comes to our sports teams and many of its players. Enrolling in this program will ensure that students learn failure first hand from professors, coaches and others that are experts on losing. Just think of the opportunities graduates will have after this curriculum. Most likely it will be oversold in its first year.
  • Gaynor building of Gambling. More money is spent on gambling than perhaps any other activity known to man. It’s time to have experts in this field and why not have MSU be the first to issue degrees in gambling? Students will learn about odds, book makers, participate in casino games, lotteries and understand more about the vig, bookies, Vegas and street gambling. And if possible, the program could be a dual-degree, Gambling and Failures. WOW!

Until then, I have say I am a Spartan and love going to the games. I am thinking of moving to East Lansing because for as long as I have been going the games, the players, marching band and cheer squad never get older. Now I know why universities have such a large alumni population, gee, I should have figured that out long ago.

Oh, there is one more reason. There is nothing more satisfying than kicking the Wolverine’s ass.

On a serious note, here is a two minute video highlighting MSU’s 2010. You will note that the Spartan’s were BIG 10 champions in football. What you won’t see are clips of the bowl game: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTnZgfpT6M0

Go Green! Go White!

Happy Thursday!