Maybe I'm stating the obvious here, but being a sports fan in Michigan in 2023 is a great experience. And that's from the standpoint of someone who isn't a fan of these teams. Seeing loyal Detroit sports fans see their teams turn the corner is awesome to watch.

When it comes to Thanksgiving sports, few do it like Detroit. After all, the Detroit Lions have been playing on Thanksgiving since 1934, the longest in the NFL. But in 2023, things are getting even hotter for sports fans in the Detroit area. There's a gauntlet of sports from Thursday to Monday for fans of all teams, and all sports, to enjoy.

Of course, on the day of Thanksgiving, the Lions will host the Green Bay Packers at Ford Field. Both teams may be headed in opposite directions, with the Lions pointed to the good for once, but it's still a historic matchup between two rivals. It's the first Detroit has hosted the Cheeseheads for Thanksgiving in 10 years and it's the first time the Lions are hosting the Packers without Brett Favre or Aaron Rodgers at quarterback since that game. The game is set for a 12:30 pm kick on FOX.

The following day, the Michigan State Spartans will also host a game at Ford Field as the Penn State Nittany Lions come to town. This Black Friday game may not have the same competitive atmosphere that was possibly anticipated when the game was moved to the Lions' home stadium, but it is an option to fill the week with as much sports as humanly possible. The game kicks off at 7:30 pm, streaming on NBC/Peacock.

The next two days Ford Field will be hosting the MHSAA football state playoffs. For those who are truly passionate about high school sports or high school football, they can enjoy four straight days of football at Ford Field. The schedule of the championship games is as follows:

  • Saturday, Nov. 25:
    • D8-10 am
    • D4-1 pm
    • D6-4:30 pm
    • D2-7:30 pm
  • Sunday, Nov. 26:
    • D7-9:30 am
    • D3-12:30 pm
    • D5-4 pm
    • D1-7 pm
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If you are looking for more college football with much higher stakes, then a quick trip out to Ann Arbor would be in order. The Michigan Wolverines host their rival Ohio State Buckeyes the Saturday after Thanksgiving. As of this writing, both teams are undefeated and could very well meet in this game without a loss between them. The loser could miss the College Football Playoff entirely. Every game between these two is huge, but this one is shaping up to be very special. kickoff for The Game is set for noon on FOX.

Sunday is back in Detroit for hockey night in Hockeytown. The Detroit Red Wings will host the Minnesota Wild at 7 pm in Little Caesars Arena. The Red Wings are having a great start to the 2023 season and are already making noise as a potential playoff team in coach Derek Lalonde's second season at the helm. The game starts at 1 pm.

Finally, on Cyber Monday, the Detroit Pistons take over Little Caesars Arena to host the Washington Wizards, which should be a winnable game for the Pistons. The Pistons are off to a slightly rockier start than many may have hoped, but the team has exciting young pieces and a promising future. Tip-off is set for 7 pm.

That's five straight days of sports in Southeast Michigan to enjoy. You could even make it six straight days with a trip to East Lansing when the Spartans men's basketball team hosts the Georgia Southern Eagles in the Breslin Center at 6:30 pm on Tuesday, November 28. The Spartans should dominate that game, but it's another excuse to stream together nearly a week-long experience of Michigan sports.

The bankroll need to enjoy even half of these games is daunting, but someone out there might be licking their chops at the opportunity to go on a gauntlet of Michigan sports events throughout the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

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