I went to the MSU/Rutgers football game yesterday in a continuation of my "Spartan Sports Weekend Spectacular."
Frankly, I'm tired of MSU football fans taking a beating for "not being loyal enough" or some such nonsense. No, the actual butts in the seats were probably nowhere near the 70,000+ announced in the stadium, but the people who were there were hearty and enthusiastic. The weather was the type of damp chill that cuts to the bone, but a surprising number of folks, myself included, stuck around to the end to enjoy MSU's 45-3 destruction of Rutgers. I really couldn't fault anyone who, at some point near or after halftime, thought to themselves, "I've had enough with freezing out here, MSU is gonna win this game, there is no absolutely no chance of a miraculous Rutgers comeback, it's time to get out of here before I suffer hypothermia."
So why did I gut it out, you may ask? (or may not ask?). Part of it is my attempt to support the team in my own little way, though I'm sure the MSU football team could not give a hoot if I, someone they don't even know, stays the entire game. Another part of it is, I may see something in this game that I've never seen before, so I'm not leaving.
But really, I make it to at least one game per season because of love for alma mater. I love the Spartan Marching Band and its entrance from the tunnel onto the field, I love the over-the-top spectacle of the football team storming onto the gridiron from the same tunnel. I love the fight song, "MSU Shadows" the alma mater. I am a sucker for the whole college football experience, and no amount of conference realignments, national championship playoff tinkering, or bowing to the whims of television time slots can dim my enthusiasm.