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Tom Izzo and His Spartans Have Already Given Spartan Nation One Shining Moment Regardless of Championship Game Outcome…

Spartans Have Already Given Spartan Nation One Shining Moment Regardless of Championship Game Outcome…


It was surreal. It was moving. It was INCREDIBLE. Those are all ways that I have heard the last week described by people. Random strangers stopping each other to greet one another, as a long lost friend was not the exception, it was the rule. When is the last time you actually heard people say, “Let’s go downtown Detroit and hang out today?” I have heard it all week.Â


As I walked out of Ford Field on Sunday having talked with coaches, players, media, volunteers, and police it was the perfect example of the day. Sitting on a little patch of grass was what looked like a father and son: Chilling. Hanging out downtown Detroit and not looking to get a cab to get out and no game to go to.


Before Saturday’s national semifinal game head football Coach Mark Dantonio stood among the throngs of thousands soaking in the moment outside of Ford Field. When he and I spoke later that night he told me, “This is what MSU is all about and why I wanted to be here.” Lots of people can say that, but at one point with MSU down to UCONN I looked behind me to see not only Dantonio, but also his entire family standing cheering and rooting the team on. He wasn’t doing his job as an employee of the University he was using his heart cheering on something he loves as passionately as the Izzone! .


Ushers who have never ventured outside of Southeast Michigan to Lansing have been instantly transformed into Spartan fans. Even Carolina fans in an overwhelming stadium of green cheered on the Spartans as they played. One Detroit media member, who openly has told me in the past of being a Michigan Wolverine fan, was frank when saying to me, “EVERYONE is a State fan now.”


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This moment has taken the putrid stench of the economy, text message scandals, failing budgets and the general apathy and disgust of the average Michiganian and set it aside. This week you are hard pressed to find Obama haters or supporters, conservatives or liberals, black or white, this week the entire state and multitudes around the nation have turned into members of the Spartan Nation.


This week has done more for the advancement of the green since Earvin and Larry tipped it off. Earvin told me himself that this weekend is the greatest basketball moment of all time. High praise coming from arguably if not the greatest, the second greatest basketball player of all time whose own National Championship game is considered the greatest game ever for the advancement of college basketball.


Tom Izzo is more relaxed than I have ever seen him. Mark Hollis is proud as a peacock and stands relaxed so much that he sent me a text BEFORE a game in this run and asked if I was, “O.K.? I looked nervous sitting courtside.”Â


This has been a shining moment for the Spartan Nation. A win can add to it, but a loss can’t take it away. This run and this Final Four have been a shining moment for the Spartan Nation.