Sep 19, 2008

Michigan State. September 20, 2008

Ahh, the Michigan State Spartans. Applesauce choking, flag fucking douchebags, sellers of early season snake oil. Here is your anti-preview for the gay Spartans of East Lansing.

Michigan State

The Spartans enter the game Saturday 2-1 with victories over MAC powerhouse Eastern Michigan and Sunbelt Conference defending champion, Florida Atlantic. MSU lost their season opener to a very overrated Cal team on the road. Javon Ringer has carried this team thus far, but how much more can he handle? Saturday will be his toughest test this year and has a chance to make a statement for a Heisman run. Brian Smith thinks otherwise.

What should you be drinking? Spartans were not known for their love of the suds, but they did have an affinity for wine. What kind of wine? The cheapest, most vile spirit ever conceived... wine in a box. Go to your local corner liquor store and pick up a box of this infamous cardboard treat. Actually, you should probably pick up about 6 and tap those fuckers early. BEWARE: Consumption of large amounts of boxed wine may turn you into a gay hillbilly. Proceed with extreme caution.

What should I be eating? When the Spartans stomped around in the old days, they basically ate whatever the fuck they found or killed. However, they were Greek so I'm sure some lamb meat and goat cheese was involved at some of the meals. So considering that, I suggest that all of you out there dine on the delicious treat known as: The Gyro. If you are invading East Lansing for the game, might I suggest Lou & Harry's Grill in downtown East Lansing. I have been told that they offer the best gyro in town. If you are unable to attend the game, or if you are too busy downing boxes of wine at the tailgate, you can make your own gyro fairly simply (if you have nothing else to do for about 3 hours). Bon Apetit!

What should I be wearing? What fashion statement would go better with gyros and wine from a box than the tried and true... TOGA! So grab your best bed sheets (the clean ones) and get wrapping. The best and worst thing about a toga is the ease of taking it off and the insane trouble of putting one together. Here's a little video to help all of the novices out there look like party professionals.

What freshman will make the biggest impact? Michael Floyd. For the past two weeks I have said that I wanted to pick Floyd, but I then went in another direction with a different frosh. Not anymore. Floyd should provide ND with yet another gamebreaker at the WR position to go along with Golden motherfucking Tate. Floyd had a TD grab against SDSU and had two big pass interference calls in his favor (another went against him) during the game versus Michigan. I see ND using a lot of 3 and 4 WR sets in the game and that means Floyd should be a huge factor. Another frosh to watch is LB Steve Filer who could make his Irish debut Saturday.

What offensive player needs to step it up? Jimmy Clausen. Jimmy has looked a lot better this year and even more so due to the fact that he isn't on his ass every other play. With that said, he has thrown 4 INTs to 5 TDs. The 2 picks in the SDSU game I have credited towards Kamara and rightfully so if you go back and watch the game, but the 2 versus Michigan were poor decisions and poor throws. For ND to accomplish its goals offensively against MSU, Clausen will only be able to throw 1 or less INTs. If he throws more than that, MSU will control the game by controlling the clock with run after run. Clausen has to be smart and make better decisions (he has improved by leaps and bounds from 2007) with the football. If Jimmy can do that, the Irish should score a good amount of points... I say yes.

What defensive player needs to step it up? Ian Williams. Ian should play a huge role in the game. MSU loves to run the ball with Ringer and it is evident in the fact that after 3 games Ringer has over 100 carries. Ian needs to eat up blockers. Eat them up and and shit them out. If he does his job correctly, he will have to take on more double teams and in effect gives our LBs open shots on Ringer. At the same time, Ian can become a huge pass rush threat with our style of defense. He is there to stunt and take on blockers for our LBs to fly threw the holes and put pressure on Hoyer. If the MSU O-line cheats and tries to take on said blitzers a little early, Ian must create the push, and pressure himself and help cause a little chaos himself. Make no mistake about it, MSU is going to try and run Ringer a lot. However, I think they will try and test this ND secondary with a lot more passes than they have tried in the past 3 games. Ian can be the biggest factor in helping the Irish defense stop MSU, if he just does his job. At the end of the game his stats might not be eye-popping, but his contribution should be out of this world.

Is there a rivalry trophy at stake? As a matter of fact, yes. (I wouldn't have asked otherwise) Here is an excerpt from an old Subway Domer post on all of ND's rivalry trophy games... Known only as The Megaphone Trophy, this trophy may now be the most famous of the ND trophies...or should I say infamous. Introduced in 1949, it is a joint sponsorship by the Alumni Clubs of ND and MSU in Detroit. Half of the megaphone is painted blue with an ND monogram and the other side is white with a green MSU. The score from each year is painted on it. The current trophy is the third one in use since it has run out of room for scores twice before. This award became nationally known after the 2005 and 2006 games. The Spartans were outraged when ND did not present them with the trophy after they were victorious at ND in 2005. ND stated that it has been the custom all along to give the trophy to the opposing team after a defeat away from the field. This might have been the starting point for Johnelle to become crazy as a bat. Most of the ND players and Coach Weis himself, admitted to not even knowing the trophy existed. This is probably true since the picture you see is from the video game NCAA 2007 by EA sports. I could not find a pic of it anywhere else.

Who's gonna win? Every fan on both side knows the stat. Since 2002 the away team has won this game and took home the Megaphone. There is no reason to honestly think that either team will just walk away with a victory given the past history of games played in North Bend/East Lansing. I think ND can slow down Ringer if they wrap and and gang rape him. I don't see too much of a pass rush threat from MSU, but they are still a very physical team in a historically physical game. I'll take the emotional Irish 33-24.

(Irish Illustrated's McStug)