Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Mr. Basketball

Incoming MSU guard Cassius Winston of University of Detriot Jesuit High School and Academy was named Michigan's Mr. Basketball.  The yearly award honors the top senior basketball player in the state since 1981 by the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan(BCAM).
Winston is the 14th Mr. Basketball that will end up playing for the Spartans.  Along with Winston, they are:

2015    Deyonta Davis      Muskegon High
2012    Matt Costello        Bay City Western
2010    Keith Appling       Detroit Pershing
2009    Derrick Nix           Detroit Pershing
2004    Drew Neitzel         Wyoming Park
2006-07 Topps #244
2002    Paul Davis             Rochester High
2001    Kelvin Torbert      Flint Northwestern
2000-01 Michigan State
2000    Marcus Taylor       Lansing Waverly
2001-02 Upper Deck MVP #209
1999   Jason Richardson   Saginaw Arthur Hill
1993   Jon Garavaglia       Southgate Aquinas
1994 Classic #9
1990   Anthony Miller       Benton Harbor
1992 Front Row #65
1988   Matt Steigenga       Grand Rapids South Christian
1989-90 Hoops #149
 1981   Sam Vincent           Lansing Eastern

Also of note is that the BCAM is naming Retro Mr. Basketball winners. Starting in 2010, they are naming one honoree for each decade with the year ending with number of the current year.  For example, in 2010 they selected Mr. Basketballs for 1980, 1970, etc.
So far, the only Spartan that was given a Retro Mr. Baskeball is Pete Gent
1990 MSU Collegiate Collection #130
Gent is most famous for playing the Dallas Cowboys and writing the book, "North Dallas Forty".

Friday, March 18, 2016

School's Out for ....Good!

I came across a bit of sad news this week.  Farmington Hills Harrison high school will be closing at the end of the 2018-19 academic year.  Of course, this also means the end of one of the most successful high school football programs in the state of Michigan.  Under the direction of coach Herrington, the Harrison Hawks has a win/loss record of 403-94-1 since their establishment in 1970.

The Detroit area high school has produced several future Spartan football players.  I know of five off the top of my head and they are:
1992 Wild Card WLAF #106

John Miller (1985-88).  An All-Big 10 in 1987 and 1988 as a safety.  Miller went on to play parts of two seasons with the Detroit Lions in 1989 and '90.  My fondest memory of Miller was when he intercepted U of Michigan four times during the 1987 game on their way to winning the Big Ten title and Rose Bowl game.   Currently, His son, Grayson, is a member of the MSU football team.
The above card of Miller is one of three that I own of him-all with the World League of Football (WLAF)
1997 Jogo CFL #179

Mill Coleman (1991-94)  Mill "the Thrill" was a star wide receiver for MSU who went on to play for Chicago Bears practice squad and the CFL for the Montreal Alouettes.  Personally, Coleman was a classmate and baseball teammate of mine as a kid. He started out in high school in my hometown and moved away for better opportunities.  Don't blame him.  He went on to win a state title and break state passing records.  At MSU, he was converted to WR.
The above is one of two Coleman cards that I own.
2007 Topps Draft Picks & Prospects #111

Drew Stanton (2003-06)  Stanton was the starting quarterback during John L. Smith's tenure at MSU.  Not much of in highlights but did manage to pull off the biggest comeback in NCAA history.  MSU was down by 35 in the third quarter and came back to win 41-38 vs Northwestern in 2006.
I own 19 different Stanton cards including the above one
2011 Panini Gridiron Gear #226
Mark Dell (2007-10) Dell was one of the early stars of the Mark Dantonio era. Still remains in top 10 all time in receptions and receiving yards. 
The above is Dell's only card that exists which of course I own.
2016 Leaf Draft #2

Aaron Burbridge (2012-15)  Burbridge will go down as playing a part of the one of the most successful Spartan teams in history. Winning multiple Big Ten titles, a Rose Bowl and a Cotton Bowl victory and playing in the football playoff.  He was all Big Ten as a senior in 2015 and was named the conference's WR of the year.
This Burbridge card is one of three that I own.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Ebay Win!

My latest Ebay purchase is of David Garner:

Garner pitched for MSU for the three years and then was drafted by Chicago Cubs.  He decided to sign with Chicago instead staying for his senior year. Time will tell if he made the right decision.
Garner is my 41st Spartan baseball player. He is placed between Wayne Fontes and Steve Garvey in the binder.

The card is from the 2013 Donruss Elite Extra Edition set. Frankly, I didn't know this card existed for awhile. The only reason I found out about it is that I have saved Ebay interest of "Spartans". So when I go on Ebay, A pictured collection of "Spartans" auctions are shown on front page.  Of course, I have to make sure they are MSU Spartans.  The Garner happened to be there to be noticed.
I recommend this tool on Ebay for other collectors

Monday, April 28, 2014

Way To Go Flozell!!

Over the past weekend, it was announced that former Spartan All American Flozell Adams donated $1.5 million dollars to the Spartan Stadium renovation project.  The donation is named in honor of her late mother and will go to the locker room.
Adams,nicknamed "The Hotel",  was 2nd round pick by the Dallas Cowboys in 1998 and became a 5 time Pro Bowler with them.  He finished his career as a Steeler in 2010 and played in his only Super Bowl.
In my collection, I have 12 total Flozell Adams cards including:
1998 Press Pass

1998 Upper Deck rookie card
2004 Bazooka Pro Bowl jesey card
I also have an 8x10 autograph photo of him pictured as a Spartan.  I would also mention part of my wantlist is his 2009 Upper Deck America's Team insert card.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Spartan Family Mourns .... Earl Morrall

Former Michigan State quarterback passed away on Friday at the age of 79.  While at MSU he was an All American in 1955 and led the Spartans to a Rose Bowl victory in 1956.
 Morrall also on MSU's baseball team.  On the diamond, he was a part of MSU's 1954 Big Ten Championship team as a backup infielder.
2003 TK Legacy
Morrall was drafted in the first round by San Francisco 49ers but his name became known as a Baltimore Colt and Miami Dolphin.  He could be considered as the greatest back up quarterback in NFL history.  As a Colt, when Johnny Unitas was injured, he stepped in and won the 1968 NFL MVP and led the Colts to a Super Bowl.
While with Dolphins, Morrall stepped in for injured Bob Griese and started 9 of the games for Miami's undefeated 1972 season.  Morrall played a total of 22 seasons in the NFL after retiring in 1976.

I have a total of 28 Earl Morrall cards. I will show some here:
1964 Philadelphia

1969 Topps
1997 Upper Deck Legends autograph

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Spartan Family Mourns... Princess Lacey

Today I am going to take a break from my regular programming.  Instead, I will honor a fallen member of the Spartan family.
Princess Lacey Holsworth was a eight year old girl who had been fighting cancer for the last three years.  She befriended MSU star forward Adreian Payne couple years ago during the team's visit to a hospital where she was staying.  Here is a nice piece about their relationship from the Big Ten Network's program, The Journey:

Sadly,  this past Wednesday, Princess Lacey lost her battle with cancer.  Through her toughest times, she always had a smile on her face, kept a positive attitude and loved unconditionally.  We all should do the same in our daily lives. Love like Lacey:

Sunday, March 30, 2014

More than just cards...

I added another addition to my Michigan State collection today, but it is not a trading card.

The latest issue of Sports Illustrated has sophomore guard Gary Harris pictured on the cover along with members of the Izzone.  Plus a cameo of Mateen Cleaves.
Every time a Spartan is on the cover of Sports Illustrated, it is a must buy.  Especially if they are in the green and white.  I now have about dozen issues of Spartan Sports Illustrateds dating back to 1979.  Which of course is with Magic Johnson after winning the 1979 title.
I also have a couple Sporting News covers including a 1979 Magic Johnson also.