Now more than two days after it happened, the (don’t call it a -gate, don’t call it a -gate) field altercation before the Michigan-Michigan State game on Saturday continues to live.
Jim Harbaugh addressed the controversy on Monday, this time taking a personal shot across the bow at Mark Dantonio. “I’ll go one step further and use Coach Dantonio’s words from a few years back,” Harbaugh said. “‘It’s not a product of the team, but their program.’ Again, that’s using his words. That could’ve been an unfortunate deal. I’m proud of our guys for keeping their cool.”
To recap: During the Spartans’ traditional arm-in-arm walk across the field before the game, Michigan players came away accusing Michigan State of clotheslining defensive lineman Lawrence Marshall and ripping the headphones out of defensive back Lavert Hill‘s ears.
Which led to linebacker Devin Bush tearing up the Spartans’ midfield logo.
On Monday, Michigan State released a statement that basically amounts to: Yeah, but you shouldn’t have been standing there.
According to the Spartans, Michigan State released a pre-game schedule of events, which both teams agreed upon ahead of Saturday and which is part of the norm for every Spartans home game. According to said schedule, Michigan State opens up the field more than two hours before the game, with the understanding the field will be cleared before Michigan State conducts its Spartan Walk.
And that’s where Michigan State’s explanation of events pretty much ends.
So, yeah. There’s no disputing of Michigan’s account, just that they shouldn’t have been standing there.
Michigan won the game, 21-7.