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Rating MSU football’s 2019 games with...THE FIREBALL SCALE

Six games are locked in place on the schedule. So let’s give grade how hype each one will be.

Oregon v Michigan State Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

I’m kind of, somewhat old.

I can’t un-ironically use words like “dope” or “hype” to describe a game without sounding cringe-y. My language around the tailgating lots is of the cinnamon whiskey dialect. So, that’s what we’re going with.

There are six kickoff times set in stone for the season, so let’s do some more wild off-season rankings. Before the seasons kicks off in about 10 weeks, let’s rate the six games on the Hype Index, the Dope Meter or...


MSU vs. Tulsa: Aug. 30, 7 p.m.

I mean, come on. First home game in 279 days. Under the lights. Pouring straight into Labor Day Weekend. (Probably) good weather with warm sunshine in the sky and cinnamon whiskey scents in the air.

It almost doesn’t get better than this. The only way it gets better is if it was a team just a few steps higher than Temple Tulane Trine Trinidad and Tobago Tulsa. Sorry Tulsa, but you’re not exactly Notre Dame.

This will be more of a “welcome back!” party than a big game tailgate, but a strong one at that.


MSU vs. Western Michigan: Sept. 7, 7:30 p.m.

Any time another state school comes into East Lansing, the party grows a little bigger. When that game happens to be a night game? HOO BOY, crank that party scale up a few notches.

If you have Western Michigan brethren in your crew, this can get taken up to a full-fledged 4.5. If you don’t, this is somewhere around a 2.5 just on default with it being a night game.

We’ll split the difference here.


MSU vs. Arizona State: Sept. 14, 4 p.m.


This game should’ve kicked off at 9 a.m. ET in a meat locker, I don’t care. Give ASU some payback for kicking off at 11 p.m. ET in 137 degree heat or whatever it was last year.

As far as MSU’s non-conference slate goes, this is by far the biggest game. On the other hand…it’s still just Arizona State. The fact that revenge will be on the mind is the main appeal here, so that’ll help the pregame buzz a tad. The best part of this game is that it’s the best kickoff time out there (I will NOT debate this), so that gives it some points.


MSU vs. Indiana: Sept. 28, 3:30 p.m.

Homecoming. Big Ten home opener. A fantastic kickoff time squarely in the afternoon. Maybe some crisp fall air in the mix? Whatever it is, it’ll be a dandy and festive atmosphere in East Lansing.


MSU at Ohio State: Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m.

Alright, so we got ourselves a huge road game at night. You know what that means? No waiting around for the lots to open up mid-afternoon to get the day started. You could, in theory, get the Fireball a’flowing whenever you please. Could you get some yardwork done and be productive during the day? Sure. But you can tailgate whenever you please.

Also, the road game means the party continues during the game. It’s a Saturday night for crying out loud, GO GRAB YOURSELF ANOTHER BEER FROM THE FRIDGE DURING THE GAME. Watch this game with family and friends and whoever, really. This has fun night potential in primetime in the comfort of your own home or watering hole.

I’ll see you all on the wonderful MSU Twitter.


MSU at Wisconsin: Oct. 12, 3:30/4 p.m.

And we’ve got another road game to round this off, but this one is in the middle of the afternoon. That leaves you two choices — start your night right at kickoff basically or hold off until after the game to either celebrate or...not.

It’ll be a game with plenty of build-up around it, as most games in Madison are. If you’ve got a clear schedule on this game day, it could be a randy ol’ time.