Seriously. How does Michigan State get away with playing their first game out of the state of Michigan in mid October. I know it’s an election year, but really, did they have to give THAT much to the senator’s campaign? Well, Northwestern isn’t much of a road trip. I’m not discounting the Wildcats’ ability, but home field advantage in Evanston is sometimes comparable to a Chucky-E-Cheese. However, ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit reminded viewers that Ryan Field can put opponents to sleep. It has the same effect as poppies have on the Scarecrow, Tin Man, Lion, and Dorothy.
But, in this game, the Spartans were able to find the Wizard just in time. Northwestern vaulted out to a surprising 17-0 lead which got the pack of purple to parade their hands in the air. The ‘Cats clearly had the “brains” to outwit undefeated Michigan State early on. But, would they have the “heart” to hold onto the early lead? Both attributes would prove superfluous as the Spartans outweighed passion and wit with a heavy dose of “courage.” It took til the fourth quarter, but Michigan State battled their way to a one point lead with a wicked catch in the back of the endzone that sent enough green clad fans out of their seats to transform Evanston into the Emerald City. The Wildcats would not be able to find their way home to a victory, but despite the loss, Ryan Field reminded me of the days when Northwestern was in the hunt for Big Ten titles. There really was a different sense of excitement in the crowd on this day. Some belief in their team may be returning to Evanston, and with that support, there lies a better chance of returning to the glory days. If that doesn’t work maybe they can click their heels three times and say, “There’s no place like the Rose Bowl. There’s no place like the Rose Bowl”