April 2, 2014
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State football concludes its 15 spring practices under eighth-year head coach Mark Dantonio with the Green-White intrasquad game on Saturday, April 26 at 2 p.m. EDT in Spartan Stadium. Parking is free (in Lots 79, 62W, 67, 56, 39/40, 41; Ramps 2 and 5; Lot 62E has been reserved for disabled parking). Admission is free, and the stadium gates (Gates A, B, C, D and G) open at 12:30 p.m.
Michigan State's 2013 team - which won a school-record 13 games, including the Big Ten Championship and 2014 Rose Bowl Games, and ranked No. 3 in the final polls - will be honored at halftime of the spring game. The first 30,000 fans will receive a commemorative poster, featuring infographics that highlight each of MSU's 13 victories as well as the team's top individual award winners from last season.
Prior to the spring game, MSU's coaching staff and players will conduct a free youth football clinic, sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Children, ages 8-12, are invited to attend the youth clinic (no registration required) from 10-11:30 a.m. on the grass practice fields behind the Duffy Daugherty Football Building, located at the corner of Chestnut Road and Shaw Lane. Clinic participants and their parents are requested to enter the practice fields through the gate on Shaw Lane. Over the last 11 years, nearly 6,200 children have participated in the annual youth football clinic.
The purpose of the clinic is to introduce youngsters to the game by stressing fundamentals. No football gear is required. In addition, clinic participants will receive Country Fresh ice cream as well as a coupon for a complimentary hot dog and soft drink to be redeemed at a concession stand in Spartan Stadium during the spring game.
For the seventh year in a row, fans will have an opportunity to purchase press box seats and enjoy the same view as the media that cover Spartan football. Only 100 press box seats - priced at $75 each - are on sale for the spring game. (Note: Minimum age requirement is 12 for press box admission.) Proceeds from the sale of press box seats will benefit the George Webster Scholarship Fund. Fans may order press box seats online at msuspartans.com. Click here to order your press box seats online. The deadline to order press box seats is 12 p.m. Friday, April 25.
Michigan State opened spring practice on Tuesday, March 25.
Additional spring game notes:
Michigan State's spring game will be televised live by the Big Ten Network, with Kevin Kugler and Kirk Cousins calling the action and Lisa Byington reporting from the sideline.
Michigan State's spring game also will be streamed live on BTN2Go, a live 24/7 digital extension of the Big Ten Network that gives fans the ability to watch the network live wherever they are via computer, smartphone or tablet. Full online access to BTN2Go is available to subscribers of participating TV providers at no additional charge. For more information, go to BTN2Go.com.
BTN also will have highlights and analysis from Michigan State's spring game on Saturday, April 26 at 6 p.m. ET on the "BTN Football Report" with Dave Revsine, Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith.
The Spartan Sports Network will broadcast the spring game, with a list of statewide affiliates to be published in the near future.
Michigan State's spring football games have attracted crowds in excess of 20,000 each of the last seven years, with estimated attendance totals of 25,000 in 2007, 27,000 in 2008, 26,000 in 2009, 30,000 in 2010, 35,000 in 2011, 21,000 in 2012 and 22,500 in 2013. Those spring game attendance figures have ranked among the nation's Top 25 each of the last seven years: No. 11 (tied with Florida State) in 2007, No. 17 in 2008, No. 19 in 2009, No. 15 (tied with Arkansas) in 2010, No. 13 in 2011, No. 20 in 2012 and No. 23 in 2013.
The Spartan Bookstore will conduct its annual clearance sale in the Sideline Shop, located inside the south end of the stadium. The clearance sale also will feature merchandise and apparel from Spartan Spirit (MSU Union), Kellogg Center Gift Shop and the MSU Golf Pro Shop. Apparel and merchandise will be discounted up to 50 percent. The Sideline Shop will open at 10 a.m.
Fans are reminded no bags or purses are allowed inside Spartan Stadium. This includes but not limited to: no backpacks, purses of any size, camera cases, binocular cases, wallets not stored in pockets, bags, diaper bags, seat cushions with pockets that are used for storage. If any of these bags are attached to a person's waist or wrist, they still are not allowed in the stadium.
Those individuals with true medical needs will be directed to Gate C. Individuals entering those gates may bring the medical items in any bag. Those bags will be searched and tagged by an MSU Police Officer. The officer working that gate has the final determination if that item is a true medical need.
Fans are reminded that the "open container" ordinance will be enforced on campus and in parking lots for the spring football game.
George Webster Scholarship Fund
The George Webster Scholarship Fund, created in February 2007 through the generosity of Jim Nelson (1960 MSU graduate from Ada, Mich.), provides opportunities for former student-athletes to return to Michigan State each year and complete their degrees. The 2013-14 scholarship recipients are Monique Carter (rowing, 2008-11) and Chris L. Rucker (football, 2007-10).
Born Nov. 25, 1945, in Anderson, S.C., Webster earned three letters for the Spartans from 1964-66, while playing for legendary head football coach Duffy Daugherty. The two-time consensus All-American and two-time all-conference selection helped Michigan State to a combined record of 19-1-1 in 1965-66 as the Spartans won back-to-back Big Ten Conference and National Championships. At 6-foot-4, 218 pounds, he revolutionized the roverback position with his size and speed. As a senior, Webster recorded 93 tackles, including 10 for losses, as Michigan State ranked third nationally in rushing defense, allowing just 51.4 yards per game. In 1967, he became just the second former Spartan to have his jersey number (No. 90) retired. Webster was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1987. He has been rated among the 100 Greatest Players of All-Time by CollegeFootballNews.com.
A first-round selection (No. 5 overall) by the Houston Oilers in 1967, Webster spent 10 years in the National Football League (Houston, 1967-72; Pittsburgh, 1972-73; and New England, 1974-76). He was selected the American Football League's Rookie of the Year by United Press International after averaging more than 10 tackles per game in 1967. Webster played in three AFL All-Star Games, earning Defensive MVP honors in 1969. In 1970, he was named to the AFL's All-Time Team (first team) by a special panel of Pro Football Hall of Fame voters.
Webster died of heart failure on April 19, 2007, at the age of 61.