College Spotlight: Michigan State University Athletics (MSU)

Posted on October 14 2019

Michigan State University Athletics include 25 different men and women’s varsity sports teams. The Michigan State Spartans are members of the Big Ten Conference NCAA Division I. Located in East Lansing, the school colors are white and green, and their mascot is a Spartan warrior named Sparty.

Starting in 1951, Michigan State’s football team shared or won six national championships through 1966 and won the Rose Bowl four times, most recently in 2014. In 1979 and 2000, the men’s basketball team won the NCAA National Championship. Throughout the decades, MSU has shown itself to be a sports powerhouse in football, basketball, and even hockey. Read on to learn more.

College Spotlight: Michigan State University Athletics (MSU)

The Mascot

The college changed its name to Michigan State College of Agriculture and Applied Science in 1925. At first, all the sports teams were called Aggies because it was an agricultural school. But Michigan State wanted to be known for more than agriculture, so they held a contest for a new nickname and mascot. The winner was “Michigan Staters”. However, a sportswriter from the Lansing State Journal disagreed and looked at the entries again to find a better name! It was he who decided on Spartans because he thought it sounded more heroic and less cumbersome. It quickly caught on.

Men’s Basketball

Michigan State University athletics are represented by a men’s basketball team which competes in the NCAA Division I in the Big Ten Conference. When playing at home, they’re in the Breslin Center and since 1995 have been coached by Tom Izzo.

Not only have they won 15 Big Ten Conference Championships, they’ve also won two NCAA championships in 1979 and 2000. In 1979, the Michigan State team was led to victory by Earvin “Magic” Johnson against Indiana State and Larry Bird. Both men would go on to play for the NBA and against each other for years. In 2000’s Championship game, Michigan State defeated the Florida Gators and the team was led by Charlie Bell, Jason Richardson, Mateen Cleaves, and Morris Peterson.

In all, the Michigan State University team has played in 33 NCAA basketball tournaments since 1957 and has made it to the Final Four 10 times. Astonishingly, 46 Spartans have played or are currently playing for the NBA.

Fans of the Spartans

People who love the Spartans basketball team might argue over who they think is the best player of all time. Is it Magic Johnson? Denzel Valentine? What about Mateen Cleaves? Don’t forget about Jaren Jackson, Jr. and Draymond Green. The Michigan State Spartans were, and are, a sports powerhouse with someone for everyone to love.

If you’re a Spartans fan, you need to show the world. Shop at Hat Heaven and get a cap with their logo. If you prefer a different basketball, football, college, or pro team, we have everything you’re looking for.

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