'13 Beatdown Sent UMAA Lineman Out Properly

'13 Beatdown Sent UMAA Lineman Out Properly

Football

'13 Beatdown Sent UMAA Lineman Out Properly

Former UMAA offensive lineman Taylor Lewan earned a 1-3 mark against the Spartans. His “legacy” is a good representation of how Michigan State sees UMAA within the rivalry.

Contact @crowleysullivan

Former UMAA offensive lineman Taylor Lewan will always embody everything that a Michigan State Spartan sees in UMAA.

On a piece of paper, Lewan had everything anyone would ever want in a college football player.

When he finished his time as a left tackle for UMAA, he stood 6’7″ and weighed 310 pounds.

He was the recipient of countless awards and accolades throughout his time in Ann Arbor and was named the Big Ten’s Offensive Player of the Year two years in a row, his junior and senior seasons of 2012 and 2013.

In 2014 he was selected by the Tennessee Titans in the the NFL Draft’s first round.

Good list of bona fides for the guy.

But if one takes a closer look at this guy’s time as a supposed leader of the UMAA football program, one finds that he does, indeed, represent most of what Michigan State Spartans see in the football program that thumbs its nose at everyone.

Here’s a very simple breakdown of the UMAA football program’s “on paper” accomplishments covering a variety of quantifiable measurements during the years when Lewan was leading the program from 2010-2013:

Big Ten Championships: 0

Big Ten Divisional Championships: 0

Record vs Michigan State: 1-3

Record vs Ohio State: 1-3

Record in Bowl Games: 1-3

Despite it being so, this isn’t intended to be a personal takedown of a singular former UMAA football player.

This is intended to put a focus on something that SpartansWire is committed to chronicling – the curious manner in which the UMAA football program, its former players, and its overall community all choose to view the Michigan State football program.

And when we take a close look at the four years when Lewan was piling up individual awards, we can see that he and his teammates were thoroughly dominated by Michigan State in every way.

Taylor Lewan famously got into a scuffle with Spartan standout Will Gholston in 2011 during a 28-14 Spartan victory that was nowhere near as close as the final score indicated and featured a fierce, physical beatdown of the Wolverines all afternoon.

Gholston was handed a deserved suspension after punching Lewan in the neck as the two became entangled in a bit of a wrestling match at the tail end of a play.

Everyone from here to Iron Mountain knows exactly why Gholston punched Lewan and everyone from here to Escanaba knows that Lewan deserved much more than a punch to the throat.

Lewan, in the BTN feature below, speaks about how he took the punch to the face personally.

I wonder if Will Gholston took what Lewan said to him personally and I wonder if that had anything to do with why Gholston punched Lewan in the neck.

Yet, Lewan got off scot free and sort of raised his eyebrows, stood on his tippy toes, used the highest octave of his voice, batted his eyelashes, and claimed he was being “bullied” by Gholston.

The hunch here is that Lewan might not ever be a huge supporter of First Lady Melania Trump’s #BeBest campaign.

Lewan also managed to escape any real scrutiny when he and his pal, the former UMAA field goal kicker with the glorious, long, flowing mane, Brendan Gibbons, found themselves embroiled in a bit of a pickle regarding an alleged rape that took place in Ann Arbor.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/bigten/2014/02/25/college-football-michigan-wolverines-brendan-gibbons-rape-investigation/5810011/

The reports of the alleged rape itself never involved Lewan’s name – but everyone from here to Germfask knew and knows the role Lewan played in that little incident.

Taylor Lewan has managed, skillfully, to keep his nose clean despite what has been a penchant for being in and around mixups, misunderstandings, mishaps, and whatnot.

And nobody ever really seemed (or seems) to address it.

The UMAA folks certainly didn’t seem to be too concerned about Lewan’s behavior when he was leading the football program to all of its glory during his time as a player there.

I do recall that Lewan liked to remove his helmet while on the sidelines during one or more games when he and his friends were competing against their non-rivals from Michigan State.

When he removed his helmet, he often was able to reveal blood and cuts and “war wounds” from the field of battle.

I remember thinking at the time, as I’d see Taylor Lewan on the sideline with his war wounds visible for the world to see, “Man – it really looks like he’s getting his butt kicked out there – just like the entire UMAA team….”

Why the focus today on Taylor Lewan and his inability to beat Michigan State, his ability to be involved in mishaps and scuffles yet escape scrutiny, his weird commitment to showcasing his war wounds that seemed to shine a big, bright light on the fact that he was being completely manhandled on the field?

Because nobody ever did this when it mattered.

Having said all of this, Spartans might enjoy the feature below that was brilliantly produced by BTN prior to and during the 2013 Michigan State vs UMAA game.

The feature starts off with a cute testimony from the UMAA equipment manager who proudly touts his lifetime record vs Michigan State as UMAA’s steward of The Paul Bunyan Trophy.

What the UMAA equipment manager fails to focus on, understandably, is that 2013, the years preceding it, and the ones coming after it have been completely dominated by Michigan State.

Taylor Lewan is also prominently featured in this BTN piece.

The feature presents spectacular on-the-field and behind-the-scenes access to the day when Michigan State took it to UMAA and even pounded in a late touchdown during the 29-6 pummeling that played a big part in that season’s Big Ten Championship and Rose Bowl victory.

It’s particularly interesting to watch and listen to Taylor Lewan throughout this feature.

Lewan and UMAA got bullied during the years when Lewan was there – and they’ve been bullied since he left.

And, getting back to the original point regarding Lewan’s representation of the strange manner in which UMAA views the annual game with Michigan State, SpartansWire welcomes UMAA to continue to scoff at the significance of the game.

SpartansWire welcomes UMAA to continue to point to the overall record that is bolstered by games played before the forward pass was introduced to the game.

Taylor Lewan and UMAA do their best to ignore these facts – but here they are:

Series record since 1950: UMAA leads 36-30-2. Kudos for the advantage – but that’s probably a different tally than UMAA’s record against Indiana.  It’s possible that no other team has defeated UMAA as many times as Michigan State has since 1950.  It’s entirely possible that I’m wrong here – perhaps I’ll check and let our readers know once I’ve confirmed…

Games played in East Lansing prior to 1957: 6

Games played in Ann Arbor prior to 1957: 44

Series record since 1990: UMAA leads 15-13. Kudos for the advantage but that’s probably a different tally than UMAA’s record against Minnesota.  What percentage of UMAA fans are even aware of the fact that Michigan State has beaten their school 13 times since 1990?  More than 6%?

Series record since Mark Dantonio became head coach of Michigan State: Michigan State leads 8-3.  Virtually every UMAA person knows this and doesn’t do a very good job of pretending not to know this.

I hope Taylor Lewan is counting all of his NFL money right now while I scribble this nonsense on my computer from my mother’s basement.

But I stand by my general narrative.

And to the UMAAers that would love to point to this and laugh about the way Spartans obsess over how Lansing Tech performs against UMAA – yeah, we do.  That’s why we’ve been kicking your butts far more than you pretend to not realize.

Enjoy reliving the pleasure of the 2013 29-6 victory right here…

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