Saturday, December 4, 2021

Pack your Prada bags, the Spartans are coming

October 20, 2000

I sometimes laugh at how many times I tried to do things just to be “cool” in grade school.

Whether it was sporting a red vest like Marty McFly in “Back to the Future,” wearing my first pair of Adidas without shoelaces like Run DMC, or trying to mimic the breakdancing I saw on “Soul Train,” I tried to do it all.

It looks like the Michigan Daily - U-M’s quasi-student newspaper, riding the coattails of columnist Erin McQuinn - tried to do the same thing Oct. 10, adding more fuel to the fire of a heated rivalry.

Now I know the “other” university is lacking a nationally renowned, accredited school of journalism, but a column referring to a “sketchy” visit to East Lansing, with reference to K-mart and Prada bags just seemed to be a waste of space.

Well, I think the National Enquirer and Mad Magazine are hiring.

Here’s a primer on happenings at U-M: When athletics aren’t going well, athletes are getting in trouble and the athletic department is recovering from bad investments, so-called “fans” get mouths as big as former basketball center Robert Traylor’s waistline.

They attack the city of East Lansing and MSU’s history full of rich tradition.

It’s a common practice, we Spartans do the exact same thing in our times of despair, and we sure have had many.

In my lifetime we have lost to the Wolverweenies in football 15 times. That’s 15 times too many.

Hopefully, the majority of individuals representing MSU criticize a little more intelligently.

Here’s some insight from our friend at the self-proclaimed “Harvard of the Midwest.”

Scholarly criticism No. 1.

“Our parties are about 500 times better than theirs.”

That might be true of MSU if the columnist’s definition of a party is rounding up three of your basketball players in a booster-sponsored sports utility vehicle to play drunken tag on the freeway.

Scholarly criticism No. 2.

All the MSU girls at a certain party seemed “terribly plain” and “went to K-mart together to buy some off-the-shelf-box shade of blonde.”

This actually might be an accurate representation of the opinion of the columnist, depending on what she saw. At least they didn’t steal the hair coloring from the discount store, like some U-M football players last year gunning for maize-and-blue light specials.

One frat party is not representative of MSU, nor would one visit to Hash Bash or the running of the Naked Mile be representative of U-M.

In all fairness though, McQuinn’s column shouldn’t be taken too seriously.

How credible is a paper that has multiple editors for each specific department and blatantly prints swear words anyway? It’s the Michigan Daily - The Michigan Delay - obviously the column still angers people.

I grew up about 7.4 miles from East Lansing, and after reading her reference to a visit to East Lansing as “sketchy,” I took it personally.

It was pretty “sketchy” when your men’s basketball team came to the Breslin Center last March and displayed “el matador” defense en route to a 51 point barrage of whoop-ass from the future national champions.

It was also pretty sketchy when wideout Plaxico Burress had a career high 10 receptions for 255 yards en route to a 34-31 triumph over “golden boy” Drew Henson and the Wolverweenies.

My loyalty to the green and white runs deep and as I’m sure you can tell by now, Ms. McQuinn, my fellow Spartans are not happy.

My parents went to MSU, they lived on Spartan Avenue and I learned what a college actually was after I got my first pair of green Spartan jammies.

Even though the Spartans are considered 16 point underdogs against the Wolverines on Saturday, I believe in miracles.

A MSU student hiked the Great Wall of China recently, spanning over 1,800 miles, becoming one of the first foreigners ever to complete the entire length accurately.

Anything can happen Saturday.

I get disgusted when I remember one of the worst things I did to try to be cool with my little friends in grade school.

Luckily that U-M hat I once wore to impress them only cost me 75 cents at a garage sale. How fitting.

State News sports editor Eric Lacy hopes for responses. E-mail him at


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