Hey, Michigan fans! I need your help silencing Sparty-loving Sheriff Mike Murphy

It's going to take more than a single cop to keep Michigan captain Buddy Moorehouse and Michigan State captain Mike Murphy apart on Nov. 14, when VINA's Tailgate 2019 takes place.

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Livingston County Sheriff Mike Murphy is a great guy, a huge community supporter and an outstanding lawman. And I need you to help me shut him up.

For all his good qualities, Murphy fails miserably when it comes to his college sports fandom. Our sheriff is a Michigan State fan, and if there’s one thing I enjoy in this world, it’s making Michigan State fans suffer.

So that’s my goal – to make our Sparty-loving sheriff suffer. And all you Michigan fans out there can help me make it happen.

This all has to do with a wonderful event that’s coming up on Thursday, Nov. 14, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Crystal Gardens Banquet Center in Genoa Township. It happens every year on the eve of the Michigan-Michigan State football game, and it’s called, simply, “The Tailgate.”

The Tailgate 2019 is sponsored by the VINA Community Dental Clinic, the amazingly awesome organization in Livingston County that provides dental services for those who can’t afford them. VINA stands for “Vision, Integrity, Need, Action,” and it provides dental services every year for more than 2,000 low-income and uninsured adults in our community. There are some adults in our county who have never been to the dentist, ever. There are some who haven’t been in 10, 20, 30 years or longer. VINA helps them all.

The VINA Community Dental Clinic would be worth your financial support in any situation, but thanks to “The Tailgate,” they make it fun and easy to help out.

Every year, “The Tailgate” benefits VINA by pitting Michigan fans against Michigan State fans to see who can raise the most money. Through sponsorships, ticket sales and an auction, the Maize and Blue battles the Green and White.

If you’re a fan of either school, the Tailgate is a spectacularly fun event, filled with food, games, cheering, sports-related auction items and more. And it’s INSIDE, which means the November weather won’t be a factor. Heck, you can even wear blue or green shorts if you want to.

This year’s Tailgate is VINA’s 11th annual event, and thus far, Michigan has won five Tailgates and Michigan State has won five Tailgates. This year’s Tailgate is going to be the tiebreaker, and it’s going to result in a year of gloating for the winner, and a year of misery for the loser.

And this is where Sheriff Murphy and I come in.

The people at VINA wanted a couple of celebrity captains for each of the teams, so they asked Murph to head up the MSU team, and they asked me to head up the Michigan team. Whoever wins is in for a year of gloating, and whoever loses is in for a year of misery.

Both of us will be there on Nov. 14 to cheer on and lead our respective teams, and you can expect a LOT of partisan razzing.

Murph will be demonstrating the proper way to field a punt and he’ll be reminding me how many Rose Bowls each team has been to in the last 10 years.

I’ll be pointing out which team has the taller basketball coach, and I’ll be doing my Mark Dantonio-on-the-sidelines impression, which basically looks like someone who hasn’t gone to the bathroom in about a month.

And the goal of this is really very simple: Whichever one of us can get the most people there to spend the most money will win.

And I really want to win.

So if you’re a Michigan fan, here’s what I need to you to do. Go to this website RIGHT NOW and buy a ticket for the Tailgate. Tickets are only $45 each, and you get a lot for that. You get some great food, you get a great night of supporting your team, and you get to see me do my Mark Dantonio impression.

Michigan State people are certainly welcome to procure a ticket, too. And if you’re a Michigan State fan, procure means “to obtain.”

In any case, even though my school is far superior to Sheriff Murphy’s school in every way, I’m at an inherent disadvantage here. After all, he has an entire police force full of people who carry guns and handcuffs at his disposal. He has HIS OWN JAIL.

What do I have? Just my snappy wit, charm and good looks.

So I need your help here. I need all you Michigan fans to buy some tickets and then show up on Nov. 14 to help me take down our Sparty Sheriff and his green-and-white buddies. I want to win this Tailgate BAD, so that I can spend the next year reminding Mike Murphy which school is truly superior.

Sure, I might be spending that year in handcuffs and in jail, but it’ll be worth it.

GO BLUE, and I’ll see you on Nov. 14!

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About Buddy Moorehouse 211 Articles
Longtime Livingston County journalist Buddy Moorehouse is director of communications at the Michigan Association of Public School Academies.

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