Edwards the worst of sellout Michigan team
By Jonathan Malavolti, The State News
Did you hear? Michigan doesn’t
consider Michigan State a big rival in football, at least not to
the degree of Ohio State. And recently, neither do the media or the
But hey, I understand, what could possibly compare to the SBC
Michigan-Ohio State Classic? Wait, you mean, you didn’t hear
the news? One of college football’s oldest matchups —
but still just a regular season game — almost got a sponsor.
What’s next? The Bennigan’s Notre Dame-Boston College
Big Irish Showdown? Or how about that Taco Bell Texas-Texas A&M
Nearly South of the Border Brawl?
Honestly, do the Wolverines really need another $530,000 (the
amount they would have been paid in the proposed deal)? I guess
they can use it to pay off recruits — but that’s a
totally different story altogether.
Today, I’m here to talk about football. And while
I’m sure Michigan is nervously anticipating the big game
against the big bad Buckeyes, who are 1-3 in conference play, maybe
they should concentrate on the Big Ten team that’s given them
the most problems in recent years — Michigan State.
That’s right, the Spartans have beaten the Wolverines five
out of the last 14 times. Not a pretty record, but still more than
any other team in that period.
It’s OK though — I’m not jealous — more
shocked than anything.
I mean, why SBC? When it comes to Michigan, there’s only
one group I think that would best represent those loyal Wolverines
fans. Give up? The Michigan Militia.
Some of my most vivid memories from attending games at the Flop,
er, Big House, include the Michigan faithful in those blue and
yellow (maize is a vegetable, not a color) camouflage pants.
In fact, I remember a game a few years back when another
Michigan State fan in the stands near me — drunk and loud,
God bless his Spartan soul — heckled the so-called
“real” Michigan fans around us.
“You didn’t go to Michigan!” he’d shout
at them. “You went to Eastern!”
And while the Spartan fans around him found this hilarious, I
kind of felt bad. I pity those poor folks in Ypsilanti who have to
be compared to the redneck nation better known as the hordes of
Michigan football fans.
All the Michigan student section ever does is follow along with
the band because, well, it’s pretty obvious they don’t
know anything about football except the square roots of the numbers
on the players’ jerseys.
Oh, and those Wolverine players. I can’t think of another
school that pays — I mean “produces,” such cocky
and overrated wastes of talent. I still can’t believe
Wolverines running back Chris Perry was even considered for the
Heisman Trophy last year. He’s just like all the other decent
Michigan running backs — they’re only made better when
running behind that monster line.
But there’s one Wolverine who disgusts me more than all
the other mediocre offensive duds from Ann Arbor, and that is wide
receiver Braylon Edwards.
Here’s a guy who was talking trash before he was anybody.
And he’s still a nobody — just a guy everyone pays
attention to because his mouth doesn’t stop running until 10
yards after his legs do. I’m sure NFL teams will be drooling
over the chance to pick up Mr. Attitude.
And I’m sick of the comeback stories about Edwards making
such an emotional and important decision to stay in Ann Arbor for
his senior year instead of leaving for the NFL. He didn’t
come back because he likes Lloyd Carr, he came back because he knew
his lazy work ethic and lack of talent wasn’t going to cut
it, so he had better return to get his degree in Play-Doh
And what’s the deal with Wolverines’ kickers?
Somehow, Michigan can recruit All-American linemen, but they
can’t find one kid in the entire nation that can kick an
extra point? Wolverine placekicker Garrett Rivas is a disgrace and
Michigan State has the talent and the heart to go head-to-head
with the Wolverines any day of the week, and we don’t need a
sponsor to pay us off half-a-mil to do it. The Spartans take pride
in their intrastate rivalry, and maybe Michigan should too —
otherwise, it’s going to end up costing them.
But hey, SBC’s always there to back them up.
Jonathan Malavolti is the State News deputy sports editor. He
can be reached at
From me to MSU: a new fight song
By Chris Burke, Daily sports writer
You know the scene at the end of the movie
“8 Mile” when Eminem wins the final battle because he
knows everything the other guy is going to make fun of him for?
That’s what I feel like every time this Michigan-Michigan
State game rolls around.
Every single year, you Sparties roll back your sleeves and bust
out your best Michigan insults … and every single year, you say
the exact same things about us.
And you know what? We’re fine with it. The girls here do
buy Prada and drive around in SUVs. My parents are paying my
tuition. Chris Webber took money from a booster, our basketball
team sucked for a while and you beat us on a last (extra) second
touchdown in 2001.
We probably are a little arrogant, and there are plenty of fans
cheering for Michigan that didn’t go here.
So, tell the people something they don’t know about
Can’t do it? Good, because I’m going to move on.
I care about keeping the Michigan-Michigan State showdown
special, and because I do, I’m going to help you where you
need it the most: your fight song.
Our band storms out onto the field and plays the greatest fight
song in the country. And your band plays something that sounds like
what the Ringling Brothers use to introduce the elephant parade at
So let’s start at the beginning.
“On the banks of the Red Cedar …”
Seriously? The Red Cedar? It’s not like you’re walking
out of Breslin onto the shores of the mighty Mississippi. We
don’t sing about the Huron River. Let’s change that
line to something more meaningful, that people will care about.
Let’s change it to: “Just an hour from Ann
Okay, skip ahead a couple lines.
“Its specialty is winning, and those Spartans play good
ball.” This one’s easy — it’s back to
the original words to the song: “Its specialty is farming,
and those farmers play football.” I swear I didn’t make
that up. Next.
“Spartan teams are never beaten.” Um … even
you Moo U. kids can figure out what’s the matter with this
one. Switch it to: “It’s been 16 years since our last
I’ll leave “All through the game they’ll
fight” more or less untouched – mostly because I
feel it’s a nice tribute to the rioting in East Lansing.
(Quick question: How many Spartans does it take to screw in a light
bulb? Answer: 2,000. One to screw it in and the other 1,999 to riot
and set the lamps on fire.)
Moving on. “Fight for the only colors, Green and White
… Go right through for MSU, watch the points keep
growing.” First off, it sounds like the coloring books in
Cow Country are a little dull — there are lots of colors, you
should take a look. Secondly, I think that other part would be more
appropriate if it was “watch the grass keep growing.”
And speaking of grass growing, riddle me this: Why did it take you
— an agricultural college — more than 75 years to
figure out how to put natural grass in your football stadium?
That’s always bothered me, or it would have bothered me if I
gave a crap about your school.
“Spartan teams are bound to win, they’re fighting
with a vim, Rah! Rah! Rah!” A) Win and vim don’t
rhyme. B) Why is East Lansing the only city in the world that uses
the word “vim?” C) Cheerleaders, not fans, say
“Rah!” … girl cheerleaders … in the ’50s.
“See their team is weakening, we’re going to win
this game! Fight! Fight! Rah, Team, Fight! Victory for
Again, we need to focus less on victories. For football, at
least, we need to put in something about being happy with who you
are and how giving 100 percent is like winning.
And now, (drum roll), your new fight song: “Just an
hour from Ann Arbor, is a school that’s known to all. Its
specialty is farming, and those farmers play football. It’s
been 16 years since our last Rose Bowl, but we all still love to
fight. Fight and, oh yeah, riot every night. Things go
‘Moo’ at MSU, let’s watch the grass keep growing.
If only we were Michigan, then maybe we would win, (Sob! Sob!
Sob!). See their team is weakening, oh shoot, no wait that’s
us. Crap! Crap! We lost again! Misery for MSU!”
Personally, I like it. It’s still not “The
Victors” … but it’s honest. And that’s
Now, if you’ll excuse me, there’s an SUV waiting for
me in the driveway — I have to go pick up my tuition check
from my parents.
Chris Burke thinks Tom Izzo and Steve Marriucci are the
cutest couple in coaching. He can be reached at