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Payton Thorne reportedly transferring to Auburn “soon”

Well, that was quick.



Payton Thorne
© Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

After just a couple of days in the transfer portal, Payton Thorne is reportedly transferring to Auburn “soon.”

Former Michigan State quarterback Payton Thorne is reportedly transferring to Auburn to continue his playing career “soon.”

It’s no secret that Thorne had his ups and downs during his time at MSU, but I hope he will be remembered more for the positives he brought to our program rather than the negatives.

Thorne played three seasons at Michigan State while starting every game the previous two years. The hype surrounding Thorne was growing during the 2020 COVID-19 season as he played in spells to replace struggling Rocky Lombardi. During the 2020 season, Thorne completed 48-of-85 passes for 582 yards and threw three touchdowns and three interceptions.

The excitement surrounding Thorne really began after his great performance in his one start of the 2020 season at Penn State. Even though the Spartans lost, Thorne played a great game going 22-for-39 with 325 yards, three touchdowns, and an interception. Even in a loss, this had Spartan Nation very excited about him becoming the full time starter in the 2021 season, and us fans were not let down.

The 2021 season was one for the record books as MSU completed its best season since 2015, going 11-2 including a top-10 win against Michigan and Peach Bowl victory against Pitt. Not only will this team be remembered, but Thorne was able to etch his name into the record books by setting the single-season passing touchdown record with 27. MSU has had some elite quarterbacks in recent history including Kirk Cousins and Connor Cook, so the fact Thorne holds this record is very impressive. The star of this team, however, was undoubtedly Kenneth Walker III, but expectations were still sky-high heading into the 2022 season even with K9 departing.

Unfortunately those expectations were not met as the Spartans limped to a 5-7 record. Payton Thorne also regressed this season only throwing 19 touchdown passes and 11 interceptions. MSU did play better later in the season including an upset win against a ranked Illinois team on the road, but a late season blunder against Indiana kept the Spartans out of bowl eligibility.

With the season ending early, questions were already beginning to circulate if Thorne was the right guy for the job heading into the 2023 season. MSU has a very good quarterback room behind Thorne including Noah Kim and highly-ranked freshman Katin Houser, so to me it was no surprise seeing Thorne enter the transfer portal to look for a fresh start.

Auburn is that fresh start for him and he will have every chance available to earn their starting spot. Head coach Hugh Freeze is in his first season with the Tigers, so it’s no surprise that he wanted to bring in someone new to compete for the starting job.

Auburn was in an open quarterback battle throughout the spring between three different players, but one of these guys, T.J. Finley, just entered his name into the portal as well. This movement in the Auburn program makes it even more obvious why they would want to go out and get a veteran guy like Thorne to compete in their quarterback room.

I hope Payton Thorne is remembered by Spartan Nation for the great wins and memories he gave us over the past three seasons. Yes, it may have been time to move on from him to give our young quarterbacks a chance to prove themselves, but I wish Thorne nothing but the best at Auburn and hope he is able to not only win the starting job, but lead the Tigers to a great season.


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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