Punt-Counterpunt: Michigan State 2012

Submitted by Brian on October 20th, 2012 at 11:51 AM



Something's been missing from Michigan gamedays since the free programs ceased being economically viable: scientific gameday predictions that are not at all preordained by the strictures of a column in which one writer takes a positive tack and the other a negative on—RECORD SCRATCH


By Ken “Sky” Walker

It’s Michigan – Michigan State this week. Time to dust off some of my favorites….

A MSU fan asks a U of M fan, “Doesn’t it suck not having a mascot?

The Michigan man replies “It’s better than having one that wears a dress.”

What do you have when you find 100 Spartan football fans covered up to the neck in sand?

Not enough sand

A Spartan wide receiver, linebacker, and defensive back are together in a car. Who’s driving?

The state trooper

What do you call a former MSU student-athlete who gets into U of M’s School of Medicine?

A cadaver

What did the MSU Spartan fan do when his team won the BCS championship?

Turn off his PlayStation 3

A teacher in East Lansing asks her middle school class how many of them are Spartan fans? The children, wanting to be like their teacher, all raise their hands except for one. The teacher asks him why he decided to be different.

“Because I’m not a Spartan fan” the boy replies. The teacher asks “Then what are you?” “I’m a proud Wolverine fan,” boasts the boy. Perturbed, the teacher asks the boy why he is a Wolverine fan. “Because my mom and dad are Wolverine fans, so I’m one too.” The teacher is now quite irritated. “That’s not a good reason.” “What if your mom and dad were morons, what would you be then?”

The boy pauses, then smiles. “Well….then I’d be a Spartan fan!”

We Wolverine fans have long had “Oh how I hate Ohio State!” as our mantra. In my mind, the Spartans have become public enemy No. 1. Coach Mark Dantonio and his band of thugs have been running roughshod across the conference, unchecked. It’s time to lay down the law and restore the proper order to the Big Ten. Go Blue!

Michigan 27, MSU 13


By Nick RoUMel

What is remarkable about the Michigan-Michigan State rivalry is that two of MSU’s upset victories were the result of documented cheating. Cornerback Eddie Brown has all but admitted that in 1990, he purposely tripped Desmond Howard in the end zone, on a two point conversion attempt that would have won the game. In 2001, “Spartan Bob’s” stopped the clock too early to give MSU one more attempt at a game winning touchdown – a gambit so blatantly dirty that it resulted in an NCAA rule change.

Spartan fans to this day remain unapologetic. As for 1990, they say “even if they’d called interference, there’s no guarantee Michigan would have won.” And in 2001, they simply shrug and say that if Michigan were so good, we should have stopped them again, in the 61st minute.

To be a Spartan fan is to be unrepentant and relentless. If they won, they deserved it. If they won cheating? So what, these things happen. If they lost, they got robbed. Mike Hart’s famous “Little Brother” comment was right on. The Spartans are the quintessential obnoxious little brother, who will neither shut up nor go away, but will hang around their big brother and his friends just for the opportunity to badmouth big brother to his friends.

Stupidly, I once went through a brief period when I thought I should be classy towards opponents. After all, I reasoned, in my Pollyanna-ish delirium, we are all Big Ten brethren. Why, Michigan State is right up the road, and many very nice people – my wife included – graduated from there. I rooted for Michigan State when they played other teams not named Michigan. I was diplomatic. I was complimentary.

But I felt …. dirty. I felt ashamed and hypocritical, re-examined my priorities, and soon went back to guilt-free hating. In that brief period of facile brotherly love, I learned a painful lesson. When you turn the other cheek to your enemies, they slap it just as hard as the first one.

I like Punt’s attitude – never miss an opportunity to make fun of Sparty. But he missed a couple, such as:

“Did you hear MSU’s library burned down? It was a total loss. Both books were destroyed, and one hadn’t even been colored in yet.”

And: “Wolverine fan goes into a bar. He sees a big guy wearing an MSU letter jacket and says ‘I want to tell you a Spartan joke.’ The MSU guy says, ‘Hold on. I’m 6’ tall, 180’ lbs; my one buddy here is even bigger, and our other friend is 6’6”, 300 lbs., and used to play offensive line for the Spartans. Are you sure you want to tell it?’

“The Michigan fan pauses and says, no … The Spartans relax, thinking they’ve intimidated the Wolverine. But the M-Fan explains, ‘Because I don’t want to have to explain it three times.’”

Here’s the biggest joke of all. Michigan State thinks they can win. The Spartans will come into the Big House thinking they can take a 5th consecutive rivalry game. They will grab, cheat, and steal - anything they can do to make up for their deficiencies in talent. But it won’t happen today. Sorry Sparty, your streak ends here. Here’s one game where Punt and I see the same result: a Michigan victory. The only problem is Punt didn’t go far enough. This one isn’t even going to be close: