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Michigan State Football: Alan Haller opens up about Penn State game

Expect this to be a one-time thing.



Michigan State football
© Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Alan Haller recently opened up about Michigan State football moving its season finale to Ford Field on Black Friday.

Michigan State football announced on May 24 that they will play Penn State in their season finale at Ford Field in Detroit. Playing a regular season game at a neutral site is very unique in college football. Michigan State has not done so since 2010 when they faced South Florida also at Ford Field.

Whether you like the decision or not, every Spartan fan wondered the same thing: Why are we doing this?

On May 26, David Harns, publisher for Spartans Rivals, helped answer that question. He posted an article to Twitter recapping a recent interview conducted between Jack Ebling and Athletic Director Alan Haller about how and why Michigan State made this decision.

Here is a brief summary of what Haller shared, recapped by Harns.

How was this decision made?

Haller immediately shared that this decision was extremely difficult to make. He said,“[Making the decision to move to Ford Field] was a close call. This wasn’t a slam dunk decision for me.” He also went on to discuss who was involved in making this decision including “donors, alumni, season ticket holders, internally within our department.”

The announcement took a lot of Michigan State fans by surprise, but it is nice to see that the athletic department took their time in making the decision. Reaching out to alumni and season ticket holders shows they genuinely care about our fans and the experience we have. Even if it’s a decision you disagree with, it feels nice to know they talked with people in our fanbase.

Is Spartan Stadium not good enough?

This might have been the most talked about topic I saw online after the announcement. Many fans argued that the experience at Spartan Stadium is good enough and there is no need to try something new. However, this had nothing to do with Haller’s decision. He emphasized multiple times that the Spartan Stadium experience is second to none and that he does not want to take away from that experience.

Haller shared his exact thought process on this stating, “I love Spartan Stadium. I played over 25 games as a student-athlete in that stadium. I attended the games as a kid and as an adult. I love Spartan Stadium; I love what it represents, the history. By no means am I devaluing Spartan Stadium by saying let’s play this one game at Ford Field. This is an opportunity to connect with our southeast (Michigan) alumni and fan base. The city of Detroit is important to us at Michigan State University. It’s strong for student recruitment – not just student-athlete recruitment – but student recruitment. We have a lot of alumni where the home base for them is the Detroit area and southeast Michigan.”

This proves that Haller loves Spartan Stadium and that some of his motivation in this decision is to connect with other members of our fanbase and alumni.

Will we see this more in the future?

In short, no. Haller was extremely adamant that we should not expect to see this occur in the future. Haller expressed, “I’m committed to doing this once. I don’t think it is in our best interest to do this again on an annual basis. I can’t ever say never – that’s not something I want to say – but by no means is this something that I want to include on our schedule every year.”

Even though he is not entirely ruling out the future, it is reassuring to know that this will not be a regular occurrence.

The last question Michigan State fans had was if we could expect this to happen if Michigan State were to host a College Football Playoff game. This time, Alan was very firm with his response, “If Michigan State is fortunate enough to get into that College Football Playoff, we’re going to have it at our home stadium.”

Spartan Stadium gives our football team an advantage not many other teams get at their home field. Knowing we will never miss out on a home CFP game is very relieving to hear.

I urge all Spartan fans to try and make the best of this news. Is missing out on one game really that bad? Why not head down to Detroit and experience something new in a really fun city? Maybe make it an even longer trip and see the Detroit Lions play the day before on Thanksgiving too! I think you should give this game a chance first before hiding it too harshly.

For the full recap of Haller’s interview with Jack Ebling by Harns, click here.


Michigan State football: Washington game time, channel announced

Fans won’t be too thrilled about the channel.



Michigan State football
© Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Washington vs. Michigan State football rematch is on Sept. 16, and the Spartans have revenge on their minds.

The game time for the Washington vs. Michigan State football game was just announced and is one I think most Michigan State fans will be happy with. The game will kick off at 5 p.m. ET on Sept. 16.

This is a great start time for Michigan State fans. That will give fans plenty of time to travel to East Lansing, enjoy a tailgate and get into the stadium. On top of that, the game will get down around 8 p.m. ET which is good for the crowd that does not like to be out late.

However, I think a lot of fans were hoping for a noon start time in this game. A noon start would have been a 9 a.m. local time for Washington, likely giving the Spartans a slight advantage. It’s no surprise seeing this big of a game scheduled in the evening to avoid that.

On top of the game time announcement, where the game will be aired on TV was also announced. This is where the good news ends. The Spartans game against Washington will only be available for streaming on Peacock. That means Spartan fans at home will have to pay to watch this game. However, a simple Google search showed me that Peacock currently only costs $20 for the entire year. A lot of Big Ten football and basketball games will only be available on Peacock this season, so that may not be a bad investment to make right now if you can.

What would a win mean for Michigan State football?

Michigan State will have revenge on its mind in this game. Washington beat the Spartans last season in Seattle 39-28. The game however did not feel that close. Michigan State made a late comeback to make the final score look respectable, but a lot of fans will tell you we never really stood a chance.

Washington will likely be a top 10 heading into this matchup, so Michigan State has a great opportunity in front of it. A win would would help spring the Spartans into the conference season with a lot of positive momentum.

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Jordan Hall hosts second annual free youth football camp (Video)

Jordan Hall is a legend already.



Jordan Hall
© Nick King/Lansing State Journal via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Michigan State freshman linebacker Jordan Hall continues to show just why he’s one of the best out there.

Jordan Hall is already showing signs of being the next great Spartan on and off the field.

The Michigan State freshman linebacker was born and raised in Fredericksburg, Va. However, he most recently moved to Bradenton, Fla., to play football at IMG Academy.

This past weekend, Hall returned home to Fredericksburg to host his second annual free Jordan Hall Youth Football Camp.

Hall has already been making a name for himself on the field for the Spartans this spring. His play and effort has been praised by fellow players and coaches alike. IMG Academy has a long history of producing high-quality athletes. This makes Hall’s tenure in the program even more noteworthy. He became the first three-time captain in IMG Academy history.

When coaches are recruiting players, they are hoping to find the perfect mix of talent and character. You don’t become a three-time captain of a storied school like IMG Academy without having both.

In a recent interview with Spartan Shadows, Cryeeta Hall said of her son, “One of his favorite things he loves to do is teach the game of football to kids. He loves to coach.”

Michigan State fans are excited to see what Jordan Hall can contribute on the field, but his character off the field so far is creating just as much excitement. When you see a young man with the heart and determination to give back to his hometown, it lets fans know this is the sort of player you can to rally around and support. Mel Tucker has shown intentionality in his recruiting. He has a specific type of player that he’s looking for. Jordan Hall epitomizes a Tucker type of player.

Hall has the potential to earn immediate playing time this year as a true freshman. I’m not a betting man but if I were, I’d wager that we’ll see him as a team captain for the green and white sooner than later.

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Mel Tucker is best coach in the Big Ten when it comes to one stat

This may surprise you.



Mel Tucker

Mel Tucker is the best coach in the conference when it comes to this one surprising stat.

Michigan State football coach Mel Tucker is one of the best coaches in the Big Ten when it comes to close games.

This may surprise some considering two of Tucker’s three years at Michigan State have resulted in losing seasons. But the data shows that Tucker knows how to come out on top when the game is close.

He has been at Michigan State since 2020. During that three year timeframe he boasts a 10-1 record in games decided by 10 points or less which is the best record in the conference during that span.

Here is a list of all 11 of those games:


  • at Michigan (W 27-24)
  • vs. Northwestern (W 29-20)


  • vs. Nebraska (W 23-20)
  • at Indiana (W 20-15)
  • vs. Michigan (W 37-33)
  • vs. Penn State (W 30-27)
  • vs. Pittsburgh (W 31-21)


  • vs. Wisconsin (W 34-28)
  • at Illinois (W 23-15)
  • vs. Rutgers (W 27-21)
  • vs. Indiana (L 39-31)

How impressive is this really?

A 10-1 record when games are within 10 points is extremely impressive. The only loss on this list is Indiana from last season, a game Michigan State likely should have one. The Spartans ended up losing in overtime to the Hoosiers, but were a chip shot field goal away from winning in regulation. That is a field goal college kickers make almost every time, so Tucker’s one loss on this list could easily have been another win.

Regardless, 10-1 is the best winning percentage in games decided by 10 points or less in the Big Ten during that three-year span.

This is how the rest of the Big Ten teams fared during this same timeframe:

  1. Michigan State: 10-1 (.909)
  2. Maryland: 8-3 (.727)
  3. Iowa: 11-5 (.688)
  4. Indiana: 7-4 (.636)
  5. Purdue: 12-7 (.632)
  6. Ohio State: 3-2 (.600)
  7. Michigan: 6-4 (.600)
  8. Minnesota: 9-7 (.563)
  9. Rutgers: 7-6 (.538)
  10. Wisconsin: 6-7 (.462)
  11. Penn State: 5-7 (.417)
  12. Northwestern: 5-9 (.357)
  13. Illinois: 6-11 (.353)
  14. Nebraska: 5-16 (.238)

What does this tell us about Mel Tucker?

One thing this tells us is the Tuck is a great in game coach in tight situations. No coach goes 10-1 in close games by accident. Sometimes there is a lot of luck involved with winning close games, but that’s not necessarily the case when you win them this efficiently. Anyone can close a game out when you are up by 20, but not everyone can win a close game in the closing seconds.

This statistic is not all good though. Michigan State has won 18 games during the past three seasons. This means that over half of the games Mel Tucker has won at Michigan State have been within 10 points. For a program with extremely high goals, that fact is a little scary.

As I mentioned before, sometimes luck has to be on your side to win these close games. So relying on winning a lot of close games to have a great season is not a recipe for success.

One things for sure though, as long as Mel Tucker is the coach at Michigan State, we stand a very good chance at winning any close game.

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