MSU CAMPUS — The Michigan State University athletic department is setting the record straight after the announcement of a new sponsorship for the men’s basketball team had social media abuzz Thursday.
“I was definitely pretty confused about it. I just saw the Rocket Mortgage thing but not a lot,” MSU student Samantha Sebastyen said.
Thursday evening, Spartan fans and social media were responding to reports that the Michigan State basketball team would take on the lengthy title “MSU Spartans presented by Rocket Mortgage” as part of a sponsorship deal.
While fans appreciated the support of the program, they were uneasy about a new title for the green and white.
“It should stay Michigan State Spartans and not Rocket Mortgage,” Patti Hoag said.
The university athletic department released a statement Friday morning clarifying that the Spartans won’t be changing their name anytime soon. “MSU Spartans presented by Rocket Mortgage” will be how the team is introduced in the Breslin Center but their official title won’t change.
Statement from Michigan State Athletics pic.twitter.com/S6zjSGZatv— Spartan Athletics (@MSU_Athletics) March 12, 2021
The department also clarified that the five-year deal with Rocket Mortgage, which includes branding at both the Breslin Center and Spartan Stadium, is not unprecedented.
“If you’re rooting for someone, you’re not going to say I'm rooting for the Rocket Mortgage MSU Spartans but, I’m glad they clarified that,” Sebastyen said.
The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed but Rocket Mortgage is owned by MSU grad Dan Gilbert and has been a partner of the university for years.
While the announcement received a lot of opposition online, some Spartan fans are excited about the new deal.
“Investment in Michigan State is always a great thing. It’s a great school. It’s a great basketball team. It’s a great athletic facility. I don’t know why it wouldn’t be great for Michigan State,” Hoag said.
The Spartans now eagerly await all that March Madness brings after their 70-64 win over the Michigan Wolverines guaranteed them a trip to the NCAA tournament for the 23rd year in a row.
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