Michigan State Football Team

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Michigan State Football Team


A tailgating visit to the home of the Michigan State football team, also known as the Spartans, will see you embrace a long tradition of pre-game fun and banter before watching one of the most consistent college football teams in the country.

Lot Opening Times

As with all football teams, the Michigan State team attracts many spectators to Spartan Arena and the traffic congestion can become problematic. For the last few seasons, the police and MSU sports directors have imposed strict limits on the parking lot opening times for each home game, such as:

  • 7 am before a noon or 1 pm kick off
  • 9 am before a 3:30 pm kick off
  • 1 pm before an evening kick off

If you arrive before these times, you cannot enter, but you will be encouraged to come back at the proper time. This action has stopped traffic lineups, especially since space is available for everyone throughout the parking lots.

Alcohol and the Spartans

Photo courtesy of Monica's Dad

Fans of the Michigan State football team who wish to drink on campus may do so as long as they are following the state law about being over 21 and drinking responsibly. The MSU directors still maintain the right to eject anyone who is drunk or acting aggressively towards any other fans.

The Spartans also keep Munn Field, which backs onto Spartan Stadium, as a substance free zone. If you have children with you, this is the place to head, as you will find child friendly tailgating parties as well as being a short walk away from the stadium. The only time Munn Field will not be available is in the case of severe wet weather as the field becomes unmanageable for drivers.

Red Cedar River

Due to the risks from overly compacted soil, the Michigan State football team has banned fans from parking on the north side of the river to save the trees on campus. You can park in designated areas on the south side of the river. If you do wish to park here, students will direct you to the allotted spaces when you arrive.


In an effort to increase the positive impact that fans can have on a game, the MSU sports directors have introduced the SHIELD initiative to all of the college sports on campus. The Spartans are one of the most successful teams, so fans will be expected to show:

  • Sportsmanship — The Spartans want their fans to show the home team support, but actively discourage verbally abusing or badmouthing the referee during the game.
  • Honor — Spartan fans are expected to act with honor, meaning that you should talk about your team with pride and perhaps to try to befriend visiting supporters from the away team.
  • Integrity — Acting with integrity means that you look after the Michigan State football team fans and the stadium. This could be helping other fans if they are lost or making sure that all trash is thrown in the bin.
  • Enthusiasm — Any team plays better when the fans are cheering for them, so the Spartans expect their fans to be as loud as possible throughout the game, even in defeat.
  • Leadership — Fans taking leadership means that you take the lead if you see a problem. This might mean telling other fans to show respect or getting help from stadium staff in an emergency.
  • Dignity — Above all, the MSU directors want fans to act with dignity. This means drinking alcohol responsibly and being courteous to other fans, both home and away, at all times while you are on campus.

The Michigan State football team has banners, posters and leaflets discussing the SHIELD initiative at all home games and the directors hope that the team will see a different response from fans for the upcoming season as a result.

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