Michigan State's victory over Michigan last weekend was a surprise to many, but not to anyone actually wearing green and white playing in the game.
The rise of Spartan Nation after this victory, was palpable, in a season in which expectations were low.
BEST FRIENDS FOREVER 💚 pic.twitter.com/mwuDzbGZSW
— Michigan State Football (@MSU_Football) October 31, 2020
To be able to upset a top 15 team as three-touchdown underdogs, resonated around the country, and first year head coach Mel Tucker sees it.
"Yes I'm keenly aware of that and I'm proud of that, that Spartan Nation is pleased and excited about our program and about our win against the school down the road and bringing back Paul Bunyan trophy back to East Lansing and that's a source of pride among all of our fans and supporters," first year Spartans head coach Mel Tucker said.
Tucker's predecessor Mark Dantonio was able to take the success against the Wolverines and maintain it, going 7-1 in games immediately following a win over Michigan.
Tucker is now tasked to do that same.
The Spartans will now head to Iowa (0-2) once again as underdogs. Tucker complimented the Hawkeyes program for being strong up front on either side of the ball and knows that the toughness the Spartans showed against the Wolverines will need to be repeated to get another road win at a notoriously difficult place to do so.
"The next game is always the most important game, always. The past is not necessarily predictive of the futre unless you don't change the behavior. Our plan and our process is to get better each and every day, to fix the issues that we had in the game and make those corrections, and we had quite a few and then continue to built on the positives we had as we continue to build our process and learn about our players," Tucker added.
As the Spartans shared numerous times on their own social media sites, they've been using the win over Michigan as a recruiting tool.
Hey Spartan fans, just putting this on your radar@MSU_Football | #GoGreen pic.twitter.com/CWdwpSaRi0
— Spartan Athletics (@MSU_Athletics) November 2, 2020
Players on the Spartans radar shared some of their thoughts on social media and the recruiting boost from a win like that is something that Tucker is aware of.
This is good. pic.twitter.com/3urR5ZftoX
— Justin Rose (@JRoseWXYZ) November 1, 2020
However Tucker said something interesting about recruiting during his press conference, and that he's not just trying to recruit new talent to East Lansing, he's trying to make sure his current players never become complacent.
"Culture is huge, I really feel that is the key to any organization. Recruiting is not just recruiting high school players, you have to recruit your own players each and every day and so you're always selling and making sure that you're working to capture the minds of your student athletes and meet them where they are, so you can give them what they need and help them to understand how buying into the culture, how it helps them individually on and off the field and how it helps the team," Tucker said.
Michigan State plays Iowa on Saturday at noon on ESPN.