03. December 2008 · Comments Off on What Happened to MSU hockey fans? · Categories: Archive 2008

Driving in the Lansing area this morning I tuned into Tim Staudt’s show on 730AM WVFN, the sports radio show in that area. Near the end of the 9-to-noon Staudt on Sports show, they were giving away tickets to tonights Michigan State vs. North Carolina game at Ford Field, and were remarking about how many tickets were still available for the game. I’m watching the game right now and there’s no doubt many seats went unsold.

But then he mentioned that the station had “volumes” of tickets available for Saturday’s Michigan-Michigan State hockey game at Munn Ice Arena, and how times had changed. I was floored. I’d heard things were bad and had a few commenters on this site describe the Spartan home ice as “the library” and the “Munnsoleum“.

I grew up in the East Lansing area. During the mid-80s my dad had Michigan State hockey tickets at Munn and I joined him to many games. I loved it. The Spartans led by Ron Mason had great teams and the place was electric. In my memory at least, the atmosphere was in the conversation with Yost. The student section was hyped up and dropped clever chants. According to the Wikipedia page, Munn was sold out for 323 games from 1985 to 2004.

I know there were a few down years leading up to the 2007 NCAA Championship, but what happened? Do fans not like Comley’s style vis a via Mason’s? Is it the Lansing economy? Did folks choose between Spartan hoops over Spartan hockey?

Related: Speaking of the MSU/Michigan game, Friday’s game at Yost is also the Teddy Bear Toss. I had no idea what the meant when I got my season tickets but a couple readers straightened me out. Reader Sean added this moment in TBT history:

I remember the teddy bear toss from a couple of years ago, maybe 04-05 or 05-06. We were down 3-0 after one period against bowling green. At the first intermission we had the teddy bear toss and someone’s bear got caught in the protective netting above the glass behind the net. This was the net that Bowling Green defended in the second period. The bear hung directly over the goalie facing him perfectly. We ended up scoring 3 or 4 in that period and winning the game. I know that the bear was for a little kid somewhere, but I wish that they had kept the bear there and just shelled out $20 or so for a new one, like as a new good luck tradition or something. Needless to say i was bitterly disappointed when i returned the next week to find that he had been taken down.

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