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Arlington, Texas — Michigan State took the field at AT&T Stadium on Tuesday morning for Cotton Bowl media day, and the focus is starting to narrow two days before the College Football Playoff showdown with Alabama.

The entire Spartans team hit the field to interact with the media, and it was clear the moment hasn't been too big for the No. 3 team in the country.

"You can just tell the emotion is building among the players and everybody is starting to tune in and buckle down, tighten up on everything," fifth-year senior defensive lineman Lawrence Thomas said. "The emotion is getting there and we're ready to go."

No. 2 Alabama followed the Spartans for their portion of media day and both teams were set to go through their final full practices on Tuesday. Walk-throughs come for each team on Wednesday before the 8 p.m. kickoff on Thursday.

The winner gets a spot in the national championship game, and that is where this Michigan State expects to be come next week.

"This is special just with the playoff implications and everything," junior tight end Josiah Price said. "You work all season all year for one goal and we've achieved our first few goals and now we're right there at the cusp of the national championship. I think that gives it a little extra but again, you can't let all the hype and media attention get to you. You have to focus on what you've done every game to get here and focus on the little things and not treat it any differently.

"This was expectation (before the season). That is the goal now at Michigan State and it's an exciting time to be here."

matt.charboneau@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/mattcharboneau

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