Adam Rittenberg chat on ESPN regarding MSU/UM

Submitted by umuncfan11 on September 8th, 2010 at 10:30 PM

I'm sure you guys will like this quote from Rittenberg's chat today:

Corey (East Lansing, Mi)
Adam, Michigan State went to a bowl game last year and brought back the majority of its offensive skill and standout defensive players. Yet, somehow, Michigan is a few votes away from getting into the AP top 25 and MSU is at the very bottom? I understand Michigan played well, but still. Tell me how this is possible because UM's 8-16 record the past few seasons proves otherwise.
Adam Rittenberg
(12:07 PM)
It's simple, Corey. More people pay attention to Michigan than Michigan State. Probably not what you want to hear in East Lansing, but it's thee truth. When Michigan goes out and plays well against a team people thought would be pretty good in UConn, it makes an impression nationally more than a rout of Western Michigan. I wouldn't worry about the rankings for MSU right now. Beat Florida Atlantic and Notre Dame, and there's a shot the Spartans enter the polls.



September 8th, 2010 at 11:02 PM ^

I was about to mention the same thing.  MSU won one more game than Michigan.  Which basically was their head-to-head that went to OT.  MSU fans need to get over the fact that they think their team is that much better than Michigan.  It's not.  And in fact, this year, the balance to the force seems to have returned via dilithium treatments


September 8th, 2010 at 10:47 PM ^

It's even simpler, Corey.  Michigan has better players, including the best player on either team right now, Denard Robinson, and better coaches.

Also a better stadium, better band, better University.  Need we go on?

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 6:48 AM ^

So... one win over a UCONN team that played an awful game and you all are back on the bandwagon in force?  Not every team is going to drop passes and fumble at the 5 yard line. 

You all don't remember last year at all?

I would be excited about Robinson too... amazing talent.  But I wouldn't be excited about 29 carries.  He won't last doing that.

But, I'm not naive enough to say Sparty is all that.  But you underestimate the Green and White.  Bought my tickets for your fine venue yesterday, we'll see.

Despite the rivalry, I hope you beat ND.  I'll always root for the conference.


September 9th, 2010 at 11:16 AM ^

I'm pretty sure the majority of people who follow and comment on MGoBlog never left the wagon.  We're happy we beat a UConn team that supposedly will contend for the Big East Title.

We aren't naive to think that Denard can carry 29 times each game but as the old, worn out adage goes, "if it's not broke then don't fix it."  Denard ran roughshod over the UConn's defense.  If future opponents can stop Denard from running effectively then I would assume the coaches would create a game plan so Denard can still be effective.  From the way he threw the ball he looked a lot better than the guy who threw the game clinching interception against Iowa. 

If you claim to read this blog then you know full well that the past two years have been fresh in our minds.  Why do you think we were really happy to win last Saturday? Plus, we are nervous about the NDn game.  We're going to be nervous about every game.

Your fellow Spartan fan, Corey, I believe speaks for the Spartan Nation as a whole.  A bunch of fans who constantly complain that they don't get the respect that Michigan does.  Why should they?

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 3:20 PM ^

A lot of the posts, dare I say the majority, on this site don't seem too nervous to me... about ND.

As for "Spartan Corey", I'm not sure if he (or anyone) represents most fans, but I do agree that today... based on the rosters as they are, Michigan State has every reason to think it is as good, if not better, than UM... and be rated as such.  They should think that way.

You all may scoff... but this rivalry will not be a cake walk back to UM dominance.


September 8th, 2010 at 10:53 PM ^

Actually, my favorite part is where the msu fan says they brought back the majority of their standout defensive if bringing back the only good defender you have is a positive thing.


September 8th, 2010 at 10:58 PM ^

I love at the end how he tries to refocus old Corey to keep his expectations in line with actual reality but still throws him a cool goal to keep striving for.  "I wouldn't worry about the rankings for MSU right now......."  but

Beat Florida Atlantic and Notre Dame, then maybe...... 

Saying no way, but there is still is hope; all at once.    smoothe

The guy could go into guidance counseling for kids who act out if the Big Ten Blogger job falls through.  His work with State fan has more universal application than he knows.

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 7:19 AM ^

...but I've seen an awful lot of ugly in the stands at Spartan Stadium over the years, I grant you.

But just like basketball changed after the Explorer rollover and the Izzo era emerged... many believe MSU has an opportunity to emerge, maybe not as a year in, year out contender, but as a player in the BIG Ten again in football.

Dantonio has to prove it out on the field... but there are a lot of good signs, that's why.

Whiy is "Michigan fan" so over the top with one win over UCONN?  Is it relief that they didn't crap the bed, or... a true belief that things are going to get better again?


September 9th, 2010 at 9:13 AM ^

It's a good question. It was a combination of a lot of things with me. It was definitely the first time that we saw what Rich has been working to put together in a form that dominated good competition.

That was exciting for the fans who really follow it closely and knew those first couple years were going to likely be struggles.  


September 9th, 2010 at 9:45 AM ^

You think Michigan practicing for a couple of extra hours is going to cause Sparty to "emerge", do ya?

I've got news for you:  your program has its own problems, ones that can't be corrected simply through more accurate timekeeping. Your savior of a coach has seen 15 of his players receive criminal convictions in his 3 short years as head coach.  If that doesn't make a parent reluctant to send their kid off to play in his program, nothing will. It's already showing in the fact that MSU is losing the in-state recruiting battle yet again, even with Michigan missing 2 straight bowl games.

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 10:09 AM ^

...this post tells me you don't know what you're talking about.  Presently, MSU's 2011 recruiting class is rated ahead of UM's.  As far as a parent's reluctance to send their kids to MSU... you better look at your own coach's track record at WVU and to some of the character individuals he has already been trying to bring to A.A.

Not sure what the heck Michigan's practice time issues, which personally I think are not a huge deal in and of themselves, have to do with anything?  I never brought them up.

And nice reference to the time keeping... can we have a second on phantom pylon touchdowns?


September 9th, 2010 at 9:08 AM ^

Yeah I did South Lyon. 6 years, 2 skins, many many more nights stumbling home from the greatness of the RIV. I loved my time there.  I have always said that you judge the success level of a coach and his program out over 5 to 10 years.  That is the mark of a program that has taken it to a higher level.

I was there for 93, 95 home wins. Both great games.  But they were just 1 game and ultimately meant nothing beyond a wild night of partying for the fans

Beating Michigan 2-4 times out of 10 (at best) doesn't make a program, even if there is 2 straight. In fact, it is less relevant then the average MSU fan cares to admit.   It is way less relevant now that Michigan is running a totally different offensive system and emphasizing different skill sets and physical talents for incoming players. The recruiting bounce is less harmful to the loser of the game.

I picked MSU to win 9 games this year because of the schedule and the fact he is in year 4. He should be winning 9 games at this point. I felt like they could win their home games outright and then find two road wins.  I am less steady they can win at U of M then I was a week ago.   Rivalry game so who knows.

I'll give you stability, but I am withholding judgment on whether they are on the rise.  The trend seems to be downward the greater opportunity Mark has to recruit and coach his own players. That isn't good. We'll see. Again 5 to 10 years of consistency, 8 plus wins, competing for championships yearly is the benchmark in my mind.

I can see why you'd have hope because Mark projects the right image for the program in a lot of ways; but so does Tim Brewster at Minnesota.  And all you heard about was his good recruiting the first couple years too. 

State fans generally though needs to stop the indignant stance, and no respect talk like Corey on this live chat. Rittenberg did a great job of throwing down the reality of the situation.  Beat good teams consistently and you'll get all the respect there is.  Although I doubt State will ever be the team of note that Michigan is, unless the Rich thing implodes.  And it looks like the opposite is going to happen.

Always great to see some fans of other teams on here. See you October 9. It is a huge game for Michigan and I give State a world of credit for making it that way.

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 9:29 AM ^

...but I was always a Peanut Barrel kind of guy.  ;-)

Can't argue with anything you've posted here.  I fully admit that whenever MSU fans, generally, have had a sniff of anything good... often they go overboard.  But I will say, not since Saban has there been the opportunity that they have now.  Recruiting is trending back up... Michigan is still trying to reclaim its place,... and MSU (despite a sloppy opener) promises to be pretty good on offense.  But it has to happen on the field or it means zip.

I too believe the October 9th game with UM is a toss up.  If anything, UM should be favored... right now.  But a win over UM at the expense of another .500 or slightly better season will not be satisfactory.

As for two years does not a trend make... agree.  But it has to start somewhere!  :-)


September 9th, 2010 at 10:49 AM ^

This is definitely a logical analysis of the situation. What irks me about most State fans I talk to (mostly family members), is how much they love Dantonio, despite him not really doing anything of note since arriving (barely averaging over .500 in his first 3 years). Yes, he's managed to beat UM, but I feel like that's been more on our shortcomings the past two years than MSU's prowess.

And while the in-state recruiting has increased, as mentioned above, that's partly because UM and MSU are rarely going head-to-head on recruits anymore, with RR looking for a much different style of player, and doing a lot more recruiting in the South.

To be honest, I'd love to see MSU do well (not well enough to beat us), and become a big name in the Big Ten. I just can't stand Dantonio, and really don't understand most MSU fans' unwavering support for him despite nothing but mediocre seasons.

And yes, I see the parallels there with Rich Rod, but Dantonio didn't have to do a 180 with the type of players he wanted on the team, and didn't inherit a depleted roster.


September 9th, 2010 at 1:21 PM ^

My answer as an MSU outsider:

Michigan State fans like their coaches mid-west, hating Michigan and beating Michigan, and their offenses basic smashmouth. Add into it that Mark does a great job as a public face for that program, and he'll definitely get extra patience capital from that fan base. He fits their profile.

Not that they need me to instruct them how to perceive their coaches, but they need to be careful to hold him to a high standard. So you make a good point.

The Yankees and like Alabama are driven most of all by insane fan interest and expectations by their fans that they be the best.  The Mets and Dodgers make tons of money too but they don't feel the need to spend like the Yankees. Alabama is rural state, but they'll drop 5 to 6 annually for Nick Saban.

I say that as long as Michigan fans  keep their expectations really high, this will all turn out ok.  A Coach must know what is on the line and have the ability to reach that height. I have no doubt Rich does.

Maybe Mark will prove he does over the long haul too. Let's get that game sizzling hot in the new division set up.

South Lyon Sparty

September 9th, 2010 at 3:27 PM ^

MSU fans are happy to have signs of stability in place, and even though MSU has not performed as well on the field overall as people had hoped... yes, beating UM the past two years has been a big help.

People believe Dantonio will elevate the program... but his support isn't unwavering, people still bitch.

What is it with Dantonio that ticks so many UM'ers off anyway?  Seriously?  Was it the Mike Hart dust up?  (That "curse" is still active BTW,... for any Mrs. O'Leary cow fans among you.)  Was it the initial press event when he called out UM coaches that he would be here for a long time?  Is it that he never smiles?

The fact that he is apparently under many of your collective skins is interesting to me.  Not sure why.


September 9th, 2010 at 4:10 PM ^

I don't mind saying that I like that you have gained some points. We aren't worse off having a provocative chain pulling voice on here.  Sharpens us.  Keep it up and you might get to around .500 and match State's big ten record since they started allowing integration in southern schools. lol

A: I think probably all the above. Plus the fans who really like Rich feel like the media has treated the two men way differently in how events have been covered and it ticks them off. It definitely pisses me off. I won't lie.

The biggest thing is that when you go through a tear down like this and you suffer some losses, it isn't pleasant. So you aren't pleasant as a fan at times.  The last thing you'll tolerate is a guy who isn't afraid to get in your grill.

The positive is that it sure has made me appreciate winning and the process it takes to build a big time winner.

When I started watching Michigan, Bo already delivered it to me on a platter.


September 9th, 2010 at 12:43 PM ^

I guess I felt a little too dumb to hang out at the Peanut Barrel. It seemed like it attracted academia and the people following in their foot steps.  I probably just operated out of ignorance. I was only there once in 6 years. 

Riv had those 1.75,  25 once mugs of Labatts on Tuesdays and you got a good middle of the road crowd and usually a nice cross section of the more mellow sect of  attractive MSU  coeds.  

But back to business. lol

I think Dantonio can win at that school.  He has set the tone in recruiting a certain type of player and with the style of play. And beating Michigan is meaningful to that program, no denying it.  And he made me take serious notice of that game.  I think it is a huge game for the Michigan program this year. But so are Iowa, Wisconsin, OSU.  The issue of matching up toe to toe with big rugged "Big Ten" type teams and winning is not only a physical question but even moreso a perception question. 

Last season's partial unravelling those last 6 games hangs out there until a team wins to over come it. I see it happening but actually doing it makes the difference.  Similar to State's efforts with their program.  I can say Rich will have us running around and through all competition by year 5, but consistently doing it makes it real to everyone. 

I got as much say in that happening sitting behind this keyboard as a popcorn vendor at the Big House. None.  

Last week was a growth spurt, but it wasn't a destination, nor was it some accident against trash.




September 8th, 2010 at 11:02 PM ^

Usually, my only issue with him is just how much of a dweeb he is.  His content is normally pretty honest and true.  If he says something negative about Michigan, it's usually not too far off.

Speaking of ESPN, I normally think Herbstreit is tolerable and calls things how he sees them.  He just has a problem seeing sometimes (like before this Saturday), but usually overcompensates when he's wrong (Saturday night).  Still not terrible w/re: to Michigan considering that he was knocked the f**k out by a Michigan D.


September 8th, 2010 at 11:09 PM ^

Particularly calling out the Domer in disguise (Jay from Boston, IIRC) and trying to break it to the Hawkeye fan that 8-4 may be more realistic this year.  Go, Rittenberg!