By Omar Thabet
Last updated: 05/13/13 3:48am
Michigan State 2-time-All-American linebacker Percy Snow was one of four Big Ten players who were inducted in the recent College Football Hall of Fame. The other three were running back Ron Dayne from Wisconsin, quarterback Tommie Frazier from Nebraska, and offensive tackle Orlando Pace from Ohio State.
There were fourteen people altogether inducted into this years 2013 Hall of Fame class; twelve players and two coaches. The Big Ten led all conferences with inductees with four. Next conference that came the closest was the Big 12 with three, and the ACC, SEC, and the Pac 12 all tied with two. The lone inductee not from one of the power six conferences was head coach Wayne Hardin from Navy/Temple.
Big Ten Player Achievements
Percy Snow (Linebacker, Michigan State University)- Two-time-All-American. In 1989, he was the 1st player in college football history to win both the Butkus Award (top linebacker) and the Lombardi Award (top lineman) in the same year.
Ron Dayne (Running Back, Wisconsin)- AP Player of the Year Award in 1999. He also won the Heisman Trophy Award in 1999.
Tommie Frazier (Quarterback, Nebraska)- 1995 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award (most outstanding senior quarterback). Consensus All-American in 1995. Finished 2nd in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1995.
Orlando Pace (Offensive Tackle, Ohio State)- 1995 and 1996 Vince Lombardi Award winner. Consensus All-American in 1995. Finished 4th in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1996.
By Dillon Davis
Last updated: 03/25/13 4:47pm
After a near-perfect performance against Oakland this weekend, MSU junior pitcher Chase Rihtarchik has earned Big Ten Pitcher of the Week honors.
Rihtarchik threw a complete-game no-hitter to lead the Spartans (13-7) to a 3-2 victory against the Grizzlies on Saturday with both Oakland runs being unearned. Battling cold weather at Oestrike Stadium in Ypsilanti, Mich., Rihtarchik (2-0) threw 122 pitches with three strikeouts and three walks to pick up his second victory of the season.
“The highlight of the weekend obviously was the no-hitter by Chase Rihtarchik in a 3-2 win,” MSU head coach Jake Boss Jr. said Monday. “He’s a kid who started the Big Ten championship for us a couple years ago so he’s seen some things and been in some situations and he’s really starting to come into his own a little bit and be the arm we thought he had a chance to be.”
The honor is the first of Rihtarchik’s career and the first for the MSU baseball program since former pitcher Tony Bucciferro earned it in May 2012.
The Spartans are set to host Central Michigan on Wednesday at McLane Baseball Stadium at Old College Field (3:05 p.m., BTDN on Spartan All-Access).
By Caleb Nordgren
Last updated: 03/20/13 5:43pm
Due to the recent inclement weather, MSU baseball has announced they will move this weekend’s series with Oakland to Oestrike Stadium in Ypsilanti, Mich.
Oestrike, the home of Eastern Michigan baseball, has a turf field and is thus better suited to handle the snowfall.
The schedule for the series will stay the same, otherwise, with a single game at 3:05 p.m. on Friday, two games Saturday with the first at 1:05 p.m. and the finale Sunday at 1:05 p.m.
The series was supposed to be the Spartans’ first in East Lansing after 16 games on the road.
Instead, the home opener will take place March 27, when MSU welcomes Central Michigan at 3:05 p.m. at Kobs Field at McLane Stadium.
By Caleb Nordgren
Last updated: 03/18/13 5:37pm
Fresh off a weekend sweep of Santa Clara, MSU baseball (9-7) got another bit of good news when sophomore catcher Blaise Salter was named Big Ten Player of the Week Monday.
Salter recorded eight hits in 12 at bats during the three-game series, four of which came in the first game of Saturday’s double-header, a 7-5 Spartan win.
Salter hit a two-run homer and finished with three RBIs in the game, adding a fourth RBI in the nightcap.
The award is Salter’s first in his career, and MSU’s first player of the week since Jeff Holm won it on May 9, 2011.
For the season, Salter is leading the Spartans by hitting .358 through 16 games. Salter also has hit one home run and driven in nine runs.
The Spartans will return to action Friday, when they take on Oakland in MSU’s 2013 home opener.
By Zach Smith
Last updated: 03/17/13 6:01pm
The MSU gymnastics team finished the regular season off with a 196.4-193.45 loss to No. 13 Denver Saturday evening.
Despite the low score, the Spartans finished with a season high scoreof 49.075 on vault, led by sophomore Alina Cartwright with a 9.95.
She tied for second on the event and in the Spartan all-time record book. Denver’s Moriah Martin won the event with a perfect 10.
The Spartans struggled on the other three disciplines, not scoring above 48.5 on any other event.
Sophomore Ashley Stevenson was the highest score on bars, with a 9.75,
tieing her for third.
MSU scored 48.4 on the event.
Denver dominated the beam and floor, sweeping both events.
Cartwright posted the highest score on the beam with a 9.825, and sophomore Ashley Noll was the top Spartan on floor with a 9.7.
Martin won the all-around with a 39.5, while Cartwright finished second with 38.975, and freshman Lisa Burt placed third after scoring 38.025.
Next up for MSU are the Big Ten Championships, which will be held at Jenison Field House beginning on Mach 23.
By Zach Smith
Last updated: 03/14/13 8:16pm
Most athletes cherish their achievements, even if they don’t come in first place, but for others, it’s a whole different story.
This was the case for the top seeded wrestler from Iowa, 125-pounder Matt McDonough, who after his loss to Illinois’ Jesse Delgado in the Big Ten wrestling championship match, proceeded to throw his medal in the trash, only to have it fished out by a reporter.
“It’s interesting,” MSU wrestling head coach Tom Minkel said. “You try to make a case by doing that, whether it’s to himself or publicly, that ‘I’m not happy with second place.’ That doesn’t change the fact that he got beat pretty soundly in the finals.”
It was the third loss on the season for McDonough, and the second to Delgado. He refused to talk to reporters after the match.
The match pushed McDonough down to the No. 3 seed in the NCAA Championships, and moved Delgado up to the second seed.
Minkel said the Big Ten Championships are a good representation of what is to come at the NCAA Championships next weekend, and he’s not expecting much out of the talented Iowa wrestler.
“He wasn’t the best wrestler at the Big Tens, which leads me to believe he won’t be the best wrestler at the NCAA’s,” Minkel said.
See a picture of the medal below, as found by a reporter:
By Brytanie Killebrew
Last updated: 02/24/13 8:35pm
The MSU track and field men’s and women’s teams brought home seven medals from the Big Ten Indoor Championships meet Friday and Saturday in Geneva, Ohio.
With the women’s team finishing in sixth place with 57 points and the men’s team in 11th with 29 points. Overall winners were Illinois with 115 points for the women and Wisconsin with 90 points for the men.
Seniors Alysson Bodenbach, Beth Rohl and Lonnie Pugh all claimed individual championships in their respective events.
Bodenbach won a gold medal in the 600-meter run and earned her personal-best time of 1:29.45. She also anchored the 4×400-meter relay — which took second place— breaking the school record with a time of 3:36.34. Other members of the relay included sophomores Jellisa Westney , Tori Franklin and Jaelynn Pryor.
Pugh also broke a school record in the weight throw this weekend earning a personal-best mark of 22.21m/72-10.5.
Rohl’s gold medal came in the weight throwing event.
On March 2-3 , MSU will travel to South Bend, Ind., to compete in the final meet of the regular season for the Notre Dame Alex Wilson Invitational.
By Zach Smith
Last updated: 02/24/13 5:54pm
The MSU gymnastics team received an outpouring of support from the Spartan community after their performance this weekend. See some of the reactions collected below.
[View the story “MSU gymnastics garners support through
Twitter” on Storify]
By Dillon Davis
Last updated: 02/12/13 7:15pm
After two consecutive standout seasons, the MSU baseball team has been picked to finish third in the Big Ten by the conference’s coaches.
The Spartans open the preseason rankings behind Indiana and Nebraska and ahead of Ohio State, Minnesota and Illinois.
A season ago, the Spartans finished 37-23, earning the program’s first NCAA Tournament berth since 1979. However, the Spartans only managed a 13-11 mark in the Big Ten, which slotted them fifth behind Purdue, Indiana, Penn State and Nebraska, respectively.
During the 2011 season, MSU captured its first Big Ten championship since the 1979 season. They had been in the hunt for a conference championship since head coach Jake Boss Jr. took over prior to 2009.
In addition to the rankings, each Big Ten coach selected three of his team’s players as part of the Big Ten Players to Watch list. Boss selected seniors outfielder Jordan Keur and pitcher Andrew Waszak and junior pitcher David Garner to represent the program on the list.
The Spartans kick off a new season at 5 p.m. against Furman on Friday in Greenville, S.C. It’s the first of a 17 game road schedule before returning home against Oakland on March 22.
By Zach Smith
Last updated: 02/10/13 8:59pm
Hey Macarena! Ay!
Not the most intimidating song, but it’s one that was heard throughout Jenison Field House as the MSU wrestling team lost to Michigan 24-15 Sunday afternoon.
Each wrestler is allowed to choose what song plays as they walk onto the mat, so when junior heavyweight Mike McClure approached his opponent, the Macarena blared from the speakers.
McClure said he was warming up in IM-Sports West before the meet with the rest of the team when he made the decision.
“The macarena comes up,” he said. “This is my enterance song.”
The song prompted teammate Christian Olanowski to tweet “Big Mike McClure comes out to the [Macarena.] How intimidating. #fearthemullet”
The move didn’t surprise head coach Tom Minkel either.
“For as big and powerfull as he is, he’s a quirky little kid,” Minkel said. “He kind of joked with me if I liked his song choice. If it gets you a win, I’ll listen to anything.”
The 285-pounder didn’t dance before he defeated his opponent, but said it might be a different case once the dual is over.
“Maybe if they would’ve played it after the match,” he said with a smile on his face.