The memory of former Michigan State punter Mike Sadler continues to live on in touching tributes by the Spartans and Big 10 community this season.
On Thursday night, Michigan State waived the 10-year waiting period usually necessary and unanimously inducted the former Spartans punter into its Hall of Fame. Sadler’s mother, Karen, was on hand to accept the award for her son, who died in an automobile accident on July 23.
The latest tribute to Sadler’s life and legacy comes from Big Ten Network reporter Michelle McMahon, a close friend of Sadler who narrated a touching piece entitled “My Best Friend” the network aired on Saturday.
“Many of you may recognize Mike as an exceptional athlete, a brilliant student, or that hilarious punter on Twitter,” McMahon said. “But I see a best friend.”
McMahon met Sadler at Forrest Hills Northern High School in their hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Though Sadler attended Michigan State and McMahon went on to play volleyball at rival Michigan, the two remained close throughout college.
McMahon said Sadler’s presence in her life was an important part of her decision to pursue a broadcasting career.
“On those days when I doubted my path, Mike was my light, believing in my before I believed in myself,” McMahon said, her voice shaking. “He is why I’m here to tell you about him today.”
McMahon then interviewed Sadler’s mother, Karen, who said her son “was my best friend. I miss him every day.” McMahon asked Karen Sadler what her son would say to his family and friends in the Michigan State community.
“Mike would say ‘Go forward,'” she said. “Live the life that he tried to live up until the point that he left us. He taught us all a lot. I think we need to carry that on.”
The segment, which took place before No. 8 Michigan State took on No. 11 Wisconsin, ended with a return to football.
“He should be here now,” Karen Sadler said. “He would love it.”