'It's time for them to leave': Rivalry's scrappiness spills over with some parting shots

Angelique S. Chengelis
The Detroit News

Ann Arbor — Michigan senior safety Josh Metellus wanted the Michigan State Spartans off the Michigan Stadium field.

After the 14th-ranked Wolverines pounded in-state rivals Michigan State, 44-10, Metellus thought it was time the Spartans should be heading up the tunnel and back to East Lansing.

“I was telling them to go home, that it’s time for them to leave,” said Metellus, tied for second on the team with six tackles against MSU. “They didn’t deserve to be in our stadium. I was trying to wave them goodbye because some of them wanted to stay on the field, and it was our time to shine. We came out with the ‘W,’ so we was just telling them to go home.”

As Michigan-Michigan State games always are, this one was physical, with extra hitting and extra trash-talking. Michigan was penalized nine times for 91 yards and MSU seven times for 93.

The two teams exchanged angry words and several players had to be separated after the game.

“I feel like we’re way more classier than them,” Metellus said. “They tried to take it to a level that wasn’t playing football. We play football over here. I don’t know what they do over there, but we play football, and it showed today.

“I felt like this defense, we made a statement today. We were playing real physical. It was to the point where we were playing too physical and they tried to do stuff after the play when we weren’t looking and stuff like that. It just showed today we were the better-prepared team and we came out and we wanted to execute more than they did.”

MSU coach Mark Dantonio said the lack of discipline from the Spartans was “disappointing” but said the game was called close. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said something similar.

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“I could tell the officials were calling a tight game at the very beginning,” Harbaugh said. “I thought our team played really disciplined, played really well, executed extremely well, did their jobs individually and also had fun. They looked like they were having fun out there playing with a light heart. Wanted to play ball and have fun doing it.”

Linebacker Khaleke Hudson, a co-captain, said everything that happened on the field is everything that is expected when the two teams meeting.

“It was chippy during the game, words were getting said, but you expect that in a game like this,” Hudson said. “Honestly, I feel like the refs did a good job of calming both teams down because it was getting kind of rowdy. Ultimately, we wanted to have max focus and we didn’t want any flags that would bring down our team. We wanted to stay focused. We wanted to do what we had to do. We just wanted to save the talk for after the game.”

And what did the Wolverines say?

“We didn’t have nothing to say at all,” Hudson said. “I just had the Paul Bunyan Trophy celebrating with my teammates.”


Twitter: @chengelis