Couches, Dumpster Burn After MSU Loss to Indiana

By: Lindsay Veremis Email
By: Lindsay Veremis Email

It's a history Michigan State would like to forget, thousands of dollars in property damage, tear gas and burning couches, connected to the wins and loses of the Spartan team.

Tuesday night, those problems returned on a much smaller scale. Several sofas burned in East Lansing. There was also a dumpster fire and if you look on social media, students are planning an even bigger party. They're planning a return of Cedar Fest.

"It's pretty wild," MSU senior Ryan Gomes said, pointing down his Cedar Village street toward a charred couch. "I came home after the game and saw this, an ambulance and a fire truck."

Photos of the destructive revelry are splashed all over facebook and Instagram. On Twitter, students called for more burning, tweeting "it's never too early for #cedarfest" and "I hope they save some for #cedarfest" and "#cedarfest #herewecome."

"It's unfortunate that it's already come to that, I think it's a poor display of sportsmanship, of celebrating a team," Captain Bill Mitchell with East Lansing Police said.

He says officers are paying attention.

According to Mitchell, Cedar Village riots like the skirmish after a final four game in 1999, are top of mind this time of year. It's part of the Michigan State Culture and officers say, a black mark on the green and white.

"There was a lot of destruction up and down Grand River, shops, vehicles, a police car burned," Mitchell recalled.

Because of that history, he says officer plan for March Madness. They monitor social media and aren't happy with what they see.

"People jumping through the fires and flames?" Mitchell said. "We saw that before in past riots and that can be so dangerous, on slip and something goes wrong and I don't think these kids realize that."

In 2008, a "Cedar Fest" facebook invite led to a riot of 3,000-4,000 people and $150,000 in property damage.

Students say it's just part of tradition. Risky or not, they want Cedar Fest to happen in 2013.

"I hope it does, but the police have cracked down a lot... that might be a good thing, might be for the best," Gomes said.

Others on social media say the more burning, the better.

"We're fans, we want to see them (the Spartans) go deep in the tournament, but we don't want to see this type of behavior," Mitchell said.


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