Monday, December 08, 2014

Baylor now a 3-pt fave over Michigan State in Cotton

And...the Over/Under is 70 total points scored.  Only Florida State-Oregon is higher with a 71-1/2 over under...  Link

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Michigan State a 1-1/2 point underdog to Baylor in Cotton Bowl

From the mouth (and juicy guitar) of the great Roy Clark:   "Well, I never picked cotton... But my mother did, and my brother did, and my sister did, and my daddy died young...."

We're going to the COTTON BOWL!  The Michigan State Spartans made one of the Big Six Bowls and will meet the Baylor Bears, ESPN, 12:30 New Years Day in Arlington Texas.  In all honesty, the logo for the Cotton Bowl should in some way incorporate Roy Clark or Johnny Cash

What is the enemy already saying?  Reading here: "Personally, I'm thrilled with the opportunity to square off against a B1G team to prove our supremacy."  Well, we shall see, no?  Wait 'til the Bears get the big load from the vaunted Big Green DEFENSE...  The ES is excited to see the Spartans, and we have a record-setting offense of our own, in a pretty good matchup against the high-flying Bears from the Big 12.

All top 6 teams were victorious this weekend, with a major ass-whipping by Ohio State vs Wisconsin (59-0) in the Big Ten title game... so the Top 4 in the College Football Playoff are: the Alabama $abans, the Oregon Buck$, the Florida State Cheaters, and the Ohio State Wieners.   And, thusly, Michigan State stayed at #8 in the CFP final poll.

The very, very early odds pick MSU as a 1-1/2 point underdog to Baylor... (seriously???). The odds are:

  • Michigan State (+1 1/2) vs Baylor (Cotton)
  • Mississippi State (-7) vs Georgia Tech (Orange Bowl)
  • TCU (-3) vs Ole Miss (Peach)
  • Arizona (-4) vs Boise St (Fiesta)
  • CFB: #2 Oregon (-8) vs #3 Florida St (Rose)
  • CFB: #1 Alabama (-9) vs #4 Ohio St (Sugar)

Here is the final CFB Poll:

College Football Playoff Rankings
3Florida State13-0
4Ohio State12-1
7Mississippi State10-2
8Michigan State10-2
9Ole Miss9-3
11Kansas State9-3
12Georgia Tech10-3
15Arizona State9-3
20Boise State11-2

Friday, December 05, 2014

Who to root for as a Spartan FB Fan this Saturday

Who to root for this weekend?  One down already: in the third quarter, #2 Oregon is hammering #7 Arizona, 44-7.  #8 Michigan State will leapfrog the Cats without even playing a game - and, this looks good for MSU, whose 1 of 2 losses came to the Ducks.

So, who should the Spartan Nation root for? Let's look at those in action ranked above the Spartans who are playing this weekend:

  • #1 Alabama vs #16 Missouri (SEC title).  Always root against that evil man, Nick $aban, who left MSU high and dry.  But, even if 'Bama loses (may as well predict the planet Mars to explode), they likely would not fall enough for MSU to leapfrog.   
  • #3 TCU vs Iowa State.  TCU is favored by 5 TDs.  Root for Iowa State, but much as noted above, the Horned Frogs are a lock against a 2-8 Cyclone team.
  • #4 Florida State vs #11 Georgia Tech (ACC title).  Root for Georgia Tech in a close game, just because the tattered history of Florida State football is so damn ugly to support. And, we need one loss out of Florida State or Baylor.  Fla State has been an unimpressive undefeated team, and with a Ga Tech win, the Jackets may likely leapfrog MSU, but the Spartans could also leapfrog the 'Noles (depending on how the size of the victory/loss). 
  • #13 Wisconsin vs #5 Ohio State (Big Ten title).  Much like 'Bama, there isn't much love in the football world for the Buckeye's Urban Meyer.  Gotta hate the cheating ways of the wiener.  Plus, a Buckeye loss combined with the injury to QB Barrett would likely see quite a drop out of the Buckeyes, and a Spartans leapfrog.  
  • #6 Baylor vs #9 Kansas State.  Baylor is favored by a TD, but ROOT FOR Kansas State in a close game.  A close Cat win would likely allow the possibility of a MSU jump because of the few spots between Baylor and KSU... however, there is the possibly of a KSU jump over MSU.  

Realistically, Alabama & TCU are locks. Oregon is rolling. Thus, let's think if Ga Tech, Wisky, and Kansas State win.  That could move the College FB Rankings to be as follows:

1.  Alabama
2.  Oregon
3.  TCU
4.  Georgia Tech or Kansas State
5.  Kansas State or Georgia Tech
6.  Florida State
7.  Michigan State
8.  Wisconsin
9.  Mississippi State
10.  Baylor
11.  Ohio State
12.  Ole Miss
13.  Georgia
14.  Arizona, etc...

If K-State wins but Ga Tech loses, then the top 4 remain set (Ala, Ore, TCU, Fla St) and Mich State likely can move up to #6.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

ESPN & college hoops is Orwellian

After watching the MSU-Notre Dame men's basketball game, and worse yet, listening to the blistering half-blind discussion from Dave O'Brien and Doris Burke.  So, the ES turns on the radio broadcast of Michigan State, with the even worse broadcast from Will Teeman (he is, by far, the WORST announcer in the nation).

I give up.  Thanks for ruining college basketball.  You all covering this game for those of us fans are terrible: missing plays, over analyzing the game, and moreover supporting the incompetence that is screwing the game up.  This goes for BOTH SIDE
S of the court.  This game is getting worse every year.  No wonder attendance is going down.

The ES thought with the retirement of Eddie Hightower, things could only get better.  Nope.

Don't worry: tis a rebuilding year for Michigan State.  This is not my issue. Rather, my issue is how the media is getting worse in distorting the play on the court.  It's like watching a full-on Broadway play of 1984:  The totalitarian state of referees, Big Brother, how art thou?  Argh.


Monday, December 01, 2014


And, for those not in the know:  We Spartans are ROCKING.   Michigan State just won the national championship in women's cross country.   And, on Saturday, the men's soccer team beat Washington in an overtime shootout. to advance to the Elite 8.

We're having another great year, Spartan fans!  Women's XC is #1, Men's Soccer is Top 8 (vs Providence Dec 5 at 1 pm), Football is #7, Men's hoops is #19, Women's hoops is #16, Field Hockey is #21, Volleyball is also advancing to the NCAA tournament (Dec. 5 vs Loyola-Marymount).


Sunday, November 30, 2014

Big Green move up to #7. NICE!

FREAKING NUMBER 7!!!!  The demolition of Penn State, 34-10, leads to a nice move up the polls, thanks to an amazing weekend of college football upsets...

Watch these teams crash and burn:  #5 Baylor lose to #9 Kansas State next week, #6 Ohio State lose to #11 Wisky (Big Ten title game), #1 Alabama lose to #14 Missouri, #2 Florida State lose to #12 Georgia Tech, and #3 Oregon lose to #8 Arizona.    Then, Michigan State will likely leap frog Ohio State and jump to the #5 position.  Win the bowl game, and maybe jump up to #3 or #4 again by the end of the season.  LOVE IT!!!!

Here are the current AP rankings:

AP Top 25
1Alabama (25)11-11426
2Florida State (29)12-01423
3Oregon (5)11-11391
6Ohio State11-11192
7Michigan State10-21048
9Kansas State9-2995
10Mississippi State10-2944
12Georgia Tech10-2823
13Ole Miss9-3753
17Arizona State9-3495
22Boise State10-2265

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Michigan State hits rare 2-weekend TRIFECTA (paired with UM and ND losses)

TRIFECTA HISTORY – Past 46 years (since 1968). Weekends: 544. Occurred: 21 times.  3.8%

OK, so Michigan State whipped Penn State, 34-10 in Happy Valley.  Now, let's revisit our trifecta... The ES looked back at this in 2009… and that was when Mark Dantonio was just kicking off as coach. My, oh my,  how things have changed… or have they?  While MSU’s dominance in the rivalry vs Michigan is solidified, we’ve struggled vs the hated Irish… and thusly, the trifecta seemingly is still pretty tough.

But, this weekend we HIT THE TRIFECTA! FOR THE SECOND WEEK IN A ROW (only third time this has happened since 1968)!  MSU beat Penn State, Michigan lost to Ohio State, and ND lost to Southern Cal.... Spartan fans, the trifecta is a a very, very, very difficult thing to do.  What is the trifecta?  Again, the ES Trifecta is defined as: on the same weekend for there to be a Michigan State victory AND losses by Notre Dame and Michigan. Note, on some weekends over the past four decades not all three teams played. But, again, the TRIFECTA makes for a PERFECT football weekend when all three events are combined.

The ES looked back over his lifetime, 46 years long now, to see how often his weekend football Trifecta had occurred.

Is it happening more frequently than the ES remembers in the past? Certainly, YES.  Dantonio is now among the nation’s elite,  Rich Rod and the soon-to-be-has-been Brady Hoke are both Michigan coaching history… Chuck E Weis is a goner at ND, but Brian Kelly seems to have the ability to stick around for the Irish.  Still, let's take a looksie… 

The statistics, plain Ws and Ls are below.
  • From 2007 - 2014, the Trifecta occurred 11 times (11 times over 88 weekends = 12.5% frequency).
  • From 1968 – 2006, the Trifecta occurred 10 times (10 times over 443 weekends = 2.3% frequency).
  • Seven times in the past 46 years has a weekend included either MSU defeating Michigan and ND losing, or MSU defeating ND and Michigan losing. 
  • Three times has the Trifecta occurred in back-to-back weekends: the first weekends of the 2007 season, from 11/7 to 11/14 in 2009, and NOW - the last two weekends (11/22-11/29) in 2014.
  • There has not been a Trifecta three times in a row in the past 46 years. And, the next opportunity to do this is the opening weekend of 2015, since Michigan is ineligible for bowl season.  (it is possible to FINALLY do the trifecta thrice first week of 2015:  MSU at WMU, Michigan at Utah, ND hosts Texas).
The year-by-year break out is below.

2014 (2)
11/22.  Michigan at Maryland. L, 16-23.  ND v Louisville, L, 28-31.  MSU v Rutgers, W, 45-3.
11/29.  Michigan at Ohio State. L, 28-42.  ND at USC, L, 14-49.  MSU at Penn State, W, 34-10.

2013 (1)
11/30.  Michigan v Ohio State, L, 41-42.  ND at Stanford, L. 20-27.  MSU v Minnesota, @. 14-3.

2012 (1)
Bowls.  Michigan v South Carolina (Outback), L, 28-33.  ND v Alabama (BCS Title), L, 14-42.  MSU vs TCU (BWW), W, 17-16.

2010 - 2011: none

2009 (2)
11/7. Michigan vs Purdue. L, 36-38. ND vs Navy. L, 21-23. MSU vs WMU. W, 49-14.
11/14. Michigan at Wisconsin. L, 24-45. ND at Pitt. L, 22-27. MSU vs Purdue. W, 40-37.

2008 (2)
10/11. Michigan vs Toledo. L, 10-13. ND at North Carolina. L, 24-29. MSU at N’western. W, 37-20.
11/1. Michigan at Purdue. L, 42-48. ND vs Pittsburgh. L, 33-36. MSU vs. Wisconsin. W, 25-24.

2007 (3)
9/1. Michigan vs. Appalachian St. L, 32-34. ND vs Georgia Tech. L, 3-33. MSU vs UAB. W, 55-18.
9/8. Michigan vs. Oregon. L, 7-39. ND at Penn State. L, 10-31. MSU vs BGSU. W, 28-17.
11/10. Michigan at Wisconsin. L, 21-37. ND vs Air Force. L, 24-41. MSU at Purdue. W, 48-31.

2006 – 2004: none

2003 (1)
9/20. Michigan at Oregon. L, 27-31. ND vs MSU. L, 16-22. MSU at ND. W, 22-16.

2002: none

2001 (2)
9/8. Michigan at Washington. L, 18-23. ND at Nebraska. L, 10-27. MSU vs CMU. W, 35-21.
11/3. Michigan at MSU. L, 24-26. ND vs Tennessee. L, 18-28. MSU vs Michigan. W, 26-24.

2000 - 1999: none

1998 (1)
9/12. Michigan vs Syracuse. L, 28-38. ND at MSU. L, 23-45. MSU vs ND. W, 45-23.

1997 - 1988: none

1987 (2)
10/10. Michigan at MSU. L, 11-17. ND at Pitt. L, 22-30. MSU vs Michigan. W, 17-11.
11/21. Michigan vs Ohio St. L, 20-23. ND at Penn St. L, 20-21. MSU at Wisconsin. W, 30-9.

1986-1985: none

1984 (1)
10/6. Michigan vs MSU. L, 7-19. ND vs Miami-FL. L, 13-31. MSU at Michigan. W, 19-7.

1983 (1)
9/17. Michigan at Washington. L, 24-25. ND vs. MSU. L, 23-28. MSU at ND. W, 28-23.

1982-1980: none.

1979 (1)
11/10. Michigan at Purdue. L, 21-24. ND at Tennessee. L, 18-40. MSU vs Minnesota. W, 31-17.

1978-77: none.

1976 (1)
11/6. Michigan at Purdue. L, 14-16. ND at Georgia Tech. L, 14-23. MSU vs Indiana. W, 23-0.

1975-1968: none.

ES Game Day: MSU gonna kick Penn State's arse

#8/#10 Michigan State (9-2/6-1) at Penn State (6-5/2-5)
Beaver Stadium, Happy Valley, PA
3:30 ET, ABC/ESPN2
Sagarin Ratings: MSU #10, Penn State #50

Weather: 36, cloudy, 7 mph wind

Line:  MSU by 13.5


  • Free Press: Rexrode, MSU 24-10
  • Onward State: Berkman, MSU 24-7, Abrzeese, PSU 17-16; Doon, MSU 27-10; Reisman, MSU 20-13; Leeson, MSU 26-19; Berger, MSU 27-10; Hardinger, 23-10; Purcell, MSU 40-9; Gilbert, MSU 17-0
  • Victory Bell Rings:  Leonard, MSU 24-7; Lance, MSU 31-6; Jezewski, MSU 38-9; Sio, MSU 35-14
  • Det News: Charbenou, MSU 31-14; Changelis, MSU 24-10; Wojo, MSU 30-10; Niyo, MSU 27-14;  
  • CFN Scout:  MSU 23-13
  •  MSU unanimous
  • Rant Sports:  MSU 24-10
  • Black Shoe Diaries: Page, MSU 33-17; Ryan, PSU 20-17;  Matt, MSU 24-7; bacaff, PSU 24-23; Blonde, MSU 16-7; Tim, MSU 24-13; Dan, MSU 27-10; PREVIEW: MSU 30-10
  • WSBT-TV:  MSU 37-21

ES sez:   OK, the Spartan defense is not as stout as last year... but it is pretty damn good, and adjustments in the secondary (Lippett playing both ways, for instance) are paying dividends.  On offense, MSU CAN'T score less than 35 against a mediocre team.  Spartan Defense is UP, Spartan Offense is SCREAMING.  Penn State is mediocre.  The ES sees this as a blow-out, unfortunately for the Nittanies.

Michigan State 51, Penn State 5.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Spartans favored by 2 TD at Penn State

9-2/6-1 Michigan State, which moved up to #8 in the USA Today coaches poll but remained at #10 in the other polls, is favored by 13-1/2 points at 6-5/2-5 Penn State.  Those are 2 Jeremy Langford TDs... and, it is the only Big Ten game this weekend with the road team a fave.

The bookies on the Big Ten slate:

MSU (-13) at Penn State
Iowa (-1) vs Nebraska
Ohio State (-20) vs Michigan
Wisconsin (-14) vs Minnesota
Maryland (-8) vs Rutgers
Illinois (-8) vs Northwestern
Indiana (-2) vs Purdon't

USA Today Poll
1Alabama (25)10-11474
2Florida State (30)11-01462
3Oregon (6)10-11431
4Mississippi State10-11323
7Ohio State10-11191
8Michigan State9-21052
11Kansas State8-2912
13Arizona State9-2783
15Georgia Tech9-2615
19Ole Miss8-3390
21Colorado State10-1304
25Boise State9-285