Michigan State kicked off a historic season with a hard fought victory.
East Lansing -- Michigan State University kicked off what hopes to be a special season this past Saturday against in-state opponent Central Michigan University. The kickoff began the 100th season at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, MI, which makes the home of Sparty the only stadium in the state to be at the century-mark.
While the age feat is special, and the beginning of any new season sprouts the inevitable gleam pride and hope, the late-afternoon kickoff felt more like a happy ending than beginning.
Michigan State fans everywhere should rejoice the ending of the last 12 months. Sorry Sparty, it's about to get ugly:
5-7 Record (3-7 against Big Ten opponents)
8 players lost to NFL
Top 2 returning players transfer (Thorne to Auburn, Coleman to Florida St.)
Seemingly endless stream of decomittments from recruits
But, Mel Tucker. And Spartan Will.
Oh, and Noah Kim.
With all that jazz in the past, the Spartans turned the entire focus to 2023, and began it with a solid showing. A slow first half turned into a blazing second half, and the Spartans defeated the Chippewas of CMU by a score of 31-7.
Here's a recap of Week 1 as told through pictures, which tell a far better story than I would.
Spartan Will. Michigan State ran onto the field for their first battle of the season, with looks of clear determination (24).. and happiness (41)!
Sophomore defensive lineman Zion Young pre-game in a new uniform. MSU launched the new helmet and jersey designs this past off-season.
Jim Mcelwain, head coach for the Chippewas, leads his team out the Spartan Stadium tunnels.
QB1, Noah Kim (10), sets for a play in the 1st quarter. Tight End Malik Carr (6), got in on the touchdown action later in the game with a dime from Kim.
A sluggish offensive start saw Noah frequently off target. The offense ran through starting running back Nathan Carter (5), Carter ended the game with 113 rushing yards and one score.
Sparty had a bend but don't break approach in the first half. However, a strong second half cleared up any doubt in the game. Sophomore Defensive Back Malik Spencer, who will see much more action this year, had a huge night with 9 total tackles.
Noah Kim was on fire in the second half, tossing 2 touchdowns and one beautiful throw after another. QB1 finished with 279yds/2 TD's/155.0 passer rating. Spartans have a history of sending QB1's to the NFL, is Kim next?
Not pictured is defensive stud, Linebacker Cal Halladay. The Junior contributed 3 tackles and an interception.
1-0 in 2023 -- next up are the Richmond Spiders of the FCS.
Images provided by Blake Wilson of Head Coach Magazine