"Sometimes, at the height of our revelries, when our joy is at its zenith, when all is most right with the world, the most unthinkable disasters descend upon us." --Jean Shepherd, A Christmas Story
Happy Boxing Day, everyone.
MSU football fans' "unthinkable disaster" was discovered late Christmas evening. It feels considerable worse than the Bumpus hounds tearing apart the Christmas turkey.
I woke up briefly late last night, and checked my phone, as I often do when I wake up late at night for some reason. At the top of my Facebook feed was a photo of Max Bullough, with the headline, "Michigan State's Max Bullough suspended for Rose Bowl" (or something similar). I (along with countless other MSU fans, I'm sure) was in utter disbelief. How could this happen to one of MSU's team captains, the "quarterback" of the defense, a kid who has worked his entire career to reach this pinnacle, scion of the famous Bullough family of Spartan football?
What could Bullough have possibly done to get him suspended from the Rose Bowl? And why is it that it never seems easy for MSU football? The Spartans finally make it back to Pasadena for the first time in 26 years, and arguably the heart and soul of the team will not be making the trip. It puts a big damper on the whole game now, which will only be relieved if the Spartans find a way to beat Stanford without Bullough.
I applaud Mark Dantonio for taking a stand and suspending Bullough for whatever his transgression was. I'm sure it's extremely painful for Dantonio, but I have a feeling that Max is receiving as much punishment, if not more, from his grandfather, father, and uncles. This has to be extremely disappointing and embarrassing for the entire Bullough clan, and especially Max himself. It's an incredibly sad way for him to end his, up to now, outstanding Michigan State football career.
It's time for the MSU defense to pick up the slack in Bullough's absence, though his loss creates a large void. Thankfully, the defense has depth, and this is a perfect opportunity for someone like Ed Davis, Kyler Elsworth, Denicos Allen, or Taiwan Jones to have a big day on January 1. Someone had to replace Max Bullough soon anyway, it'll just happen one game earlier than anyone expected.