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Spartans tip off 'Midnight Madness' with actor Gerard Butler of '300' fame

Category: Misc./General Career News
Article Date: October 16, 2010 | Publication: | Author: David Mayo | The Grand Rapids Press

Posted by: maryp

EAST LANSING -- Michigan State's "Midnight Madness" basketball opener drew a capacity crowd of 14,759, with hundreds more turned away, to see a theatrical Spartan mingle with the athletic ones.

Gerard Butler, the actor who played King Leonidas in the movie "300," addressed the football team in the afternoon, then the basketball team before the Friday night and early Saturday morning festivities.

Women's basketball players knocked on the men's locker room door to summon Butler into the hall, where they posed for photographs.

In "300," Butler played a Spartan warrior king, and he stirred Breslin Center fans by recalling a signature line from the movie.

Butler was introduced by Spartans coach Tom Izzo.

"Well, you know what the first thing I'm going to say is: 'Spartans! What is your profession?' " Butler bellowed.

The crowd responded with three chants and fist pumps.

Butler is scheduled to attend Saturday's homecoming football game against Illinois.

Fans lined up, starting hours before the event, to get the best seats after doors opened at 9:30 p.m.

They celebrated the raising of another NCAA Final Four banner and had the opportunity to have photographs taken with the six Big Ten championship trophies won during the Izzo era.


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