What is "Little Brother?"

Submitted by JonnyHintz on February 18th, 2015 at 10:39 AM
I'm relatively new to the site and this is my first post, so here's hoping I don't royally screw it up. Looking back on Mike Hart's infamous "little brother," claims, our recent struggles on the football field, and this season on the hard court, what does "little brother," mean to you? Is it a mindset? Is it the results of the game? Is it how you carry yourself after the game? For me, it is a mindset. Mark Dantonio's response to Hart's words. Playing the victim. Going to extremes to find bulletin board material. Finding ways to feel slighted by opponents. To more recent events such as the entire Spartan basketball team gathering at half court to yell at 3 Michigan players during warm-ups. The post game chants of "Just like football," after beating a severely depleted Michigan team. The pettiness, the inferiority complex, the child-like temper tantrums when Michigan doesn't pay them attention.... To me, THAT is what "little brother" is. I'm curious what the rest of you think.



February 18th, 2015 at 11:18 AM ^

I see it as something Mike Hart should have just shut up and won graciously...but that wasn't his style. I know many revere him as a great Michigan back. I am undoubtedly in the minority but My lasting images of him are tied to that arrogant statement. Success is performance, arrogance is telling someone how good you are...when you may, or may not have the ability to support that opinion.

the real hail_yes

February 18th, 2015 at 11:24 AM ^

Maybe I'm reading this wrong, but are you suggesting that Hart (and the team he played on) may not have had the ability to support his assertion that Sparty is like our little brother? Because I'm pretty sure his record was flawless in that regard


February 18th, 2015 at 3:41 PM ^

And the point? What do the Buckeyes have to do with that game?

Was the immediate question after Hart guarenteed victory vs ND "Mike how can you make that statement after going 0 for 3 agaisnt OSU?" or were only Buckeyes and Spartans allowed to claim OSU's victories over Michigan?


February 18th, 2015 at 11:28 AM ^

You weren't good at many things athletically I assume. It is a rivalry. Shit is said. The life it has is completely due to Sparty inferiority. It rung too true and close to home. It will remain as long as they give it life. It is the sweet part of the rivalry, it matters so much to them that even consecutive wins don't satisfy them.

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February 18th, 2015 at 1:07 PM ^

Sorry, but as long as the University of Michigan defines itself by comparing itself to elite educational institutions and Michigan State defines itself by comparing itself to the University of Michigan, MSU will always be "little brother."  

Sparty hatred of all things Wolverine cements their "little brother" status even more.  They are the bitter little brother, screaming for attention.  Some years, they are more successful than others.  

Even with seven vacated victories, Michigan leads the basketball series 90-79.  They lead the football series 68-34-5.  I understand that it is a great achievement for Sparty to have won exactly half as many games against Michigan in football as they have lost, but it doesn't change much AFAIC.

Regression to the mean: coming to a theater near you.


February 18th, 2015 at 4:49 PM ^

My wife works at Mott, and a lot of her coworkers are spartan grads.  It is amazing to me, the stories that she tells, about how much those cowrkers hate Michigan.  It's just bizarre to me that someone would carry that much hate around, when they work at Mott and are a small part of what makes the University great.  

I get annoyed by Dantonio and Izzo, and always want to beat them, but outside of playing them in sports, I just don't have any hate towards State. It is a weird state of mind over there.

I also think this is somewhat new, since none of my friends that went there in the late 90s, early 2000s ever showed the type of hatred that seems to come out of students now. 


February 18th, 2015 at 6:36 PM ^

in the 70s, and my brothers and I went to UM. We barely even used to kid one another about it. But the notion of American universities as a kind of infinite caste system didn't exist then, either. A lot of academics in this country carrying around a perpetual resentment that they aren't teaching at Harvard or Yale.


February 18th, 2015 at 7:35 PM ^

Growing up in Ann Arbor, I never knew many Spartan fans so I was ambivalent about MSU, and they didn't matter much anyway. But my UM friends that came from Saginaw, OC, Taylor and other areas with more Sparties have a different, more conflicted experience.


February 18th, 2015 at 11:10 AM ^

It probably should have never been said, but the guy who said it was 4-0 against them. 


BTW-In case people forgot, Dantonio was the one who started it all with his "Should we have a moment of silence?"

Dantonio was told on Sept. 1 of U-M's season-opening loss to Appalachian State on the radio after his team's win over UAB. He replied: "Should we have a moment of silence?" 

I can't wait for Harbaugh to put this asshat in his righful place. 


February 18th, 2015 at 11:14 AM ^

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Dantonio's statement was said sarcastically as a response to the press informing him of the App St. loss. Like, "why should I care? Why bring that up here?" Taking that as a slight deserves the same ire given to Dantonio for feeling slighted by seemingly inconsequential events or words.


February 18th, 2015 at 11:57 AM ^

I'm tired of this Michigan apolgism and flagellation over comments made by a guy who a) went 4-0 vs. Sparty and b) ran for ridiculous yards against them.

If peoiple have a problem with Hart's results based shit talking then they should have similar issues with Dantonio's "pride comes before a fall" quote.

It's an f'n rivalry and crap is going to get said.

Now, back to letting the hate flow.



February 18th, 2015 at 7:06 PM ^

This. He was a 21 year-old responding to his peers on the MSU squad, and an arrogant, jackass coach who came in taking swipes before he'd even coached a single snap against Michigan as the HC at MSU. Fuck them and their ongoing butthurt. If 6 for 7 hasn't helped them get over it, nothing ever will, hence their own perpetuation of the term. 


February 18th, 2015 at 12:05 PM ^

They can claim all they want that Harbaugh's hiring doesn't worry them.  Either they're lying through their teeth or they're blissfully unaware of what he and his staff will do for the Michigan Football program. 

Things are about to change in football, no bout a doubt it.


February 18th, 2015 at 7:00 PM ^

Oh, lying asshats, no question about it. I'm taking postgrad classes there now and work in Lansing around several MSU grads, I hear plenty of what gets said. In 2013, we were supposed to be scared shitless because they hired a recruiting coordinator. Fast forward a year and some change, Michigan hires an NFL coach the same week they lose one of the best assistants in the country, head coaching material, and Michigan fans being excited and hopeful is ridiculous and arrogant. OK, guys. 


February 18th, 2015 at 2:52 PM ^

I said something similar last year to a Sparty cousin who was wetting himself with glee over Staee's success over the recent years. I said congratulations, over the life span of a first grader, MSU has been dominant.

Of course, over his own life span (born in 1970) UM leads 31-13. So when you've won 75% of your games over four decades, come see me then.

And as you said, with JH in the driver's seat, that ain't gonna happen.


February 18th, 2015 at 10:42 AM ^

It seems like lil bro is trying to prove their identity as an equality with ][\/][ichigan. Instead of letting the accomplishments speak for themselves, they must show and tell what they have done. Could we say a quasi inferiority complex?