It’s the most expected thing in college basketball. It’s laughed about every year and almost a point of pride for Michigan State Spartans fans as it annoys other fanbases around the country. Every year, MSU basketball is going to seemingly fall apart in late January through February – finding the fix just in time for the biggest games of the year in March.
And yet, somehow, even State fans still fall for the okie-doke.
It was mid-February, MSU had just lost four of their last five games. Fan confidence, according to SB Nation FanPulse, had dropped over just a few weeks from 100 percent to two weeks in a row below 40.
Now, well, everyone is back. The Spartans have put together four-straight wins, three of those against ranked teams and the last two of them on the road. Confidence, as expected, has taken off like a rocket.
Confidence now sits at 98 percent. Just as telling, the rest of the conference is starting to get nervous about just how good Michigan State is.
Fans around the Big Ten were asked who they think the best team is right now in the Big Ten. In one week MSU went from third highest at only 6 percent, to nearly 30 and the only team to even compare to the Maryland Terrapins.
With only one game left in the regular season, fans attention has turned to the postseason, specifically the NCAA Tournament. Despite confidence in the team right now, fans aren’t going overboard, expecting State to earn a three-seed.
For some teams, being relegated to only a three seed may limit expectations for a large segment of fans. State fans, however, know how far a three-seed can go.
Roughly 80 percent of fans think Michigan State will reach at least the Elite Eight, with about 50 percent expecting a return to the Final Four and more than 15 percent ready to hang a national championship banner.
The high expectations have clearly returned to East Lansing. With the team playing as well as it has all season, fans once again think the Spartans can live up to the preseason hype.
With more success comes even more scrutiny. Make sure to have your voice heard and help set the narrative surrounding this team every week by signing up for the next FanPulse survey.