October 19th, 2011 at 11:46 AM ^

The Michigan-Michigan State rilvary would have scored "dirtier", but Michigan is just not comitting enough fouls.  

The rivalry is in the top 10 of dirty rivalries just on Michigan State alone! 

You stay Klassy, Sparty.



October 19th, 2011 at 2:28 PM ^

Notice that these are just called penalties. As is obvious to anyone watching the game, there are just as many cheap shots on both sides (Lewan holding Gholston's facemask in the dirt, Roundtree's facemask and throwdown of Adams, Roh's facemask twist on Baker).  However, the officials don't generally call them on Michigan. Same reason your offensive line is allowed to hold on every play, and block ten yards downfield. Normal college football rules don't apply to UM, because the Big Ten constantly tries to prop you up.

Naturally, they can't make up for the horrific play on the field, and you end up losing anyway. 


October 19th, 2011 at 8:42 AM ^

I hate rivalry games with a lot of personal fouls. I would rather see two rivals clashing than simply make it a backyard football game. Surprising to see Ok-OK St. being one of the cleaner ones, but  I guess it is hard to get personal fouls when a touchdown is scored every other play and no one runs the ball.


October 19th, 2011 at 8:46 AM ^

Great find!  I love the fact that sparty is getting all this great publicity.  In time, like as in next year, we should start taking advantage of these penalties.  


October 19th, 2011 at 2:04 PM ^

Psht. Like any of those rivalries compare to the history, tradition and intensity brought in the IU-MSU rivalry. When Big Ten Championships and Rose Bowl berths are on the line like they are with that game every year, it gets intense.

Sparty can recruit nationally based off that game alone, let's not denigrate it.


October 19th, 2011 at 8:53 AM ^

I'm sure Delany and friends at the B1G offices love to see stuff like this floating across cyberspace.  You would like to think that the B1G would take a strong stand and deal out some serious punishment.


October 19th, 2011 at 9:40 AM ^

would make the refs less reticent to throw a flag - dirty until proven innocent. Bad reputations, once earned, take a long time to overcome. Sparty's opponents may be enjoying this for a while. Of course, it is possible that they don't give a damn about their bad reputation.


October 19th, 2011 at 9:13 AM ^

Buckle Your Chin Strap

The rivalries with the most late-hit and behavior-related penalties over the last five meetings:


Auburn-Georgia 5.4 Georgia 59%
Duke-North Carolina 5.2 N. Carolina 69%
UCLA-Southern California 4.8 UCLA 54%
N. Mexico-N.Mexico St. 4.6 N. Mexico 65%
Kansas-Missouri 4.2 Missouri 76%
Michigan-Michigan St. 4.0 Michigan St 80%
C. Michigan-W. Michigan 3.8 Western 58%
Brigham Young-Utah 3.6 Utah 61%
NC State-North Carolina 3.4 N. Carolina 59%  



October 19th, 2011 at 9:15 AM ^

I'm obviously not condoning dirty play by any standards, but I wonder how many of those penalties the WSJ is using are borderline or questionable calls. Example, being pushed out of bounds a second late and getting the unnecessary roughness call (nothing malicious or headhunting).

Either way, the Ghoulston-like penalties do need to be punished. Wasn't it the Florida/Bama game a few weeks ago when a Florida LB took a swing at a Bama player? Wonder what ever came of that...

Gulo Blue

October 19th, 2011 at 9:55 AM ^

Team Penalties per Game
UNC 3.59
MSU 3.20
Missouri 3.19
Georgia 3.19
N.Mexico 2.99
UCLA 2.59
Auburn 2.21
USC 2.21
W. Mich 2.20
Utah 2.20
UNC 2.01
Duke 1.61
N.Mexico St. 1.61
C. Mich 1.60
BYU 1.40
NC State 1.39
Kansas 1.01
Michigan 0.8


October 19th, 2011 at 10:19 AM ^

Not a surprise to see that MSU's personal fouls from last weekend exceeded the combined average from the dirtiest rivalries.  Not a good look for Sparty, especially as the continued press is no moving on to tie their personal fouls and coaches' comments to the dorm "fight" and previous violent criminal conduct of MSU players. 

Der Alte

October 19th, 2011 at 10:27 AM ^

Note the M-Ohio rivalry, one of the most famous and legendary in college football, did not appear on the most-offenses list.

Through the years clean rather than dirty play has characterized that game. I have attended/watched for many, many years. Late hits, passer roughing, OB hits have been rare, and caused more by youthful exuberance than by viciousness. Punches to the face, helmet twisting, obviously slamming an opposing player onto the field after the whistle. That kind of stuff has been virutally nonexistent. But through the years both M and Ohio have had coaches who have stressed that dirty play only hurts you, not the other team.

Unfortunately such an ethos does not obtain in East Lansing.

Section 1

October 19th, 2011 at 12:54 PM ^

There have been a lot of MGoComments over the years about Millen of course. 

And of course he's widely hated in metro Detroit for being the singularly catastrophic ex-general manager of the Detroit Lions NFL franchise.

But I was never much of a part of that because my interest in NFL football is so minimal.  What was even more curious to me, was the relatively high number of people who were interested in Millen as a college football television analyst.  And who thought that Millen was pretty good in that role.  Because I have always, from the beginning of his dubious tenure on television, thought that Millen was a total ignoramus and a consummate meathead.

Justifying Gholston yesterday was just more of the same.  Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstriet were laughing at Millen.  By the end of the brief segment, I am not sure that Matt Millen even believed what Millen was saying. 

Can you just imagine how you'd feel about a contentious debate, in which your only supporter was Matt Millen?


October 19th, 2011 at 1:39 PM ^

By the end of the brief segment, I am not sure that Matt Millen even believed what Millen was saying.

Did Millen even believe what he was saying when he started? Or was he just playing an assigned role?

I'm not so sure it was the case here but I often get the impression that the ESPN producers have assigned each commentator a side in the argument. It's just not as interesting for viewers if everyone agrees--somebody's got to do the dirty work of creating a controversy if none exists.

(Needless to say this is not limited to ESPN and I don't mean to single them out.)


October 19th, 2011 at 10:33 AM ^

I prefer a clean rivalry to one where dirty plays set the tone of the game.  While things like late hits are a part of the game, to me they are still cheating.  If a quarterback is knocked out of the game because of a clean solid hit, that is one thing.  If he is knocked out because of a dirty late hit, that's another thing.  And if the results of the game are decided by the quarterback being out, then how can the winning team hold their heads high?


October 19th, 2011 at 3:07 PM ^

...if the board feels that all PFs are bad, or if some are defendible. Maybe it's growing up playing football AND hockey, but IMO a captain or OL who draws a flag to rally his guys, to clear a pile off his QB, or provoke a reaction is using the tools at his disposal and maybe playing a smart, situational game. (There's obviously a difference between sending a message and trying to injure someone).