Game Ball & Helmet Stickers: Michigan State
It comes with the territory, I get it. I truly do. But at the end of the day, it's just a game. One team wins and the other is forced to face the angry mob and pitchforks. That’s just the world we live in today but it does not make it any easier to swallow after watching men like Trace McSorley over the past 3 years and knowing he left it all out there on that field.
Credit Mark D'Antonio and his Spartans for coming into our house, on our Homecoming, amidst a sea of Stripes, swinging with all their might. Their backs were against the wall, their season hung by a thread, and in the end, they made more plays than us. They've been in this position before so we probably should have taken them just a little more seriously than we did, myself included. For those of us watching at home, we had the pleasure of being reminded more than once that Sparty has the fifth most wins over Top 10 squads over the last decade with eight, and sure enough, No. 9 came tumbling down all dressed in Blue and White.
Safe to say, we can all put that trusty old ‘elite’ talk as far down in our hip pocket, at least for a little while longer. Even the return to Happy Valley of the newly crowned King of New York, aka Super'Quon Barkley, was not enough to save us on this night. We're at a point now that Game Balls don’t get handed out for losses and Helmet Stickers are out of the question, but I'd be remiss not to mention Miles Sanders on offense for the way he carried the rock and Garrett Taylor for the way he made his presence felt on D. McSorley set the all-time passing yards record but I’m sure that’s the furthest thing on his mind today and Shareef Miller, John Reid, and KJ Hamler deserve a shout-out for their standout play as well.
So here we are again. With six games left, our backs against the wall, riding a two-game losing streak of our own. I remind all the naysayers out there that we’ve been in this exact same position before and everything turned out ok. Two weeks ago, we all clung to the word ‘elite' like it was a gift from heaven, but what we failed to hear in those post-game comments from James Franklin was that going from great to elite would be just as hard, or even harder than it was to go from average to good, and from good to great. I doubt any of us expected to be sitting here today nursing a loss but as hard as it was to watch Trace McSorley down on a knee with his head bowed in defeat, the sun rose the next day in Happy Valley just as it will on the 2018 season.