We”ve heard it all before. Michigan students call Michigan State students unintelligent, low-class, uncultured and socially malfunct. They say our campus is too big, our teams are easily beaten and our classes are jokes. We know nothing about their academic challenges, their social pressure or their massive collections of knowledge.
Meanwhile, Spartans students call Wolverines snotty, pretentious, boring, overambitious and big-headed. We complain that they don”t even have a campus and their students take class competition over the top. They know nothing of our academic challenges, our social normalcies or our Spartan pride.
Our parties are riots. Your parties are lame.
We shop at the lowly mall. Your prissy skin crawls at the thought of a bargain.
Yes, we”ve definitely heard it all before.
The truth is that there are people who fit both stereotypes at each school. There are slackers in Ann Arbor and there are geniuses on the banks of the Red Cedar. Both schools have nationally acclaimed sporting teams. It”s hard for me to say it, but both schools, even Michigan, must have something to offer.
To say every person at a school fits one personality is shortsighted. I don”t like to lay blanket statements like that. I have friendships (although most are dwindling) with Michigan students. My brother was a Wolverine. I can”t hate the entire Ann Arbor community.
So let”s imagine I can slice away the quality people at Michigan (all 36 of them) and directly attack the population of Wolverines who do fit the stereotypes.
What”s wrong with you people?
I grew up in a somewhat affluent community brimming with people who thought they were better than others. The cool kids at my school were self-appointed, they were snotty and they were simply “better” than the rest of us.
It”s amazing how Michigan found a niche in attracting those social dingbats.
But really, I”m curious. Explain this to me.
How does a person become obsessed with being right, with being better, with material things?
There is a kid like this in every class, the one who is always raising his hand, always correcting everyone else, and always telling everyone he got an “A” on a test.
Michigan State is that quieter kid who also gets an “A” and just slips his paper in his bag, and smiles to himself. We”re the kid that just gets the job done and goes home.
You”re not really smarter than us. You just rub everyone”s face in it. We go on with our lives.
On Saturday, I know some of those arrogant Michigan students will find a way into Spartan Stadium. They”ll stand in our student section and say things like, “Go team, tally-ho!” They”ll act as though they know every single thing about every single player. They”ll shout out plays to head coach Lloyd “Scary face” Carr, as if he can hear them.
In other words, they”ll be those annoying ones that everyone will pick out and shower with obscenities.
And that will be fun.
But even more fun will be the game itself. Ignore Michigan”s No. 6 slot in the national poll and the skewed No. 4 ranking in the Bowl Championship Series. Those numbers don”t mean a thing in this game.
Take a look at some other figures:
Michigan State is 7-1 against the last eight Top 25 teams that have wandered into Spartan Stadium. We have won three of the last four outings in East Lansing against the Maize and Blue. And Michigan State is averaging more first downs, more total offense, more rushing yards and has given up fewer passing yards than Carr”s squad.
But stats are simply numbers on paper. They aren”t the real reason we will beat Michigan on Saturday.
You think you”ll win because you”re better. It”s your mantra, your security blanket in life.
And we”re that person who sees you boast and than coolly gets the job done, smiles to ourselves and goes home.
That”s really why you don”t like us, isn”t it?
Krista Latham, the State News sports editor, can”t believe she said there are 36 quality people at U-M. It”s more like 11. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.