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What is the color code for the Michigan State Lime green?

The official Michigan State lime green color code is PMS 357 C or CMYK equivalent C50 M0 Y100 K0. This distinctive bright green hue has become synonymous with Michigan State athletics and is an integral part of the university’s brand and identity.

The History of Michigan State Lime Green

Michigan State adopted the lime green and white color scheme in 1903 and it has remained unchanged for over a century. Prior to 1903, the school colors were black, yellow and red. The change to lime green and white was led by Michigan Agricultural College (MAC) professor Darwin D. Crary. Crary felt the school needed colors that were bolder and would carry better symbolism. He suggested the green to represent Michigan’s agriculture industry and white to represent purity.

The exact shade of lime green was finalized when the Athletic Department had uniforms made in that color. In 1915, legendary football coach John Macklin worked with a uniform supplier to develop the custom lime green color that became the official athletic team color. It soon came to represent the university as a whole.

For many years the exact specifications of the custom color were unknown outside of the vendor Michigan State worked with. It wasn’t until 2001 that the university finally identified the correct Pantone Matching System (PMS) number as 357 C. This allowed the color to be accurately reproduced in any medium.

Usage of Lime Green at Michigan State

The lime green color can be found everywhere at Michigan State. It is one of the most widely implemented college colors in the country. Some of the more notable uses of Michigan State lime green include:

  • Athletic uniforms – All Spartan varsity athletic teams wear lime green in some form.
  • Stadiums and arenas – Spartan Stadium football field, Breslin Center basketball court, etc.
  • University logos and branding – Official university seal, Spartan helmet logo, etc.
  • Campus buildings – Many building accents and design elements use lime green.
  • Student apparel – Very popular color for Michigan State fan apparel and student clothing.

The consistent use of the lime green color over more than a century is extremely rare in college athletics. Most schools have changed color schemes multiple times. This longevity is a testament to the tradition and identity represented by Michigan State lime green.

Michigan State Lime Green Color Codes

The official Michigan State lime green has the following color code values across different formats:

Color Format Michigan State Lime Green Code
Pantone PMS 357 C
CMYK C50 M0 Y100 K0
RGB R144 G201 B0
HEX #90C900

Having access to the precise color codes allows the lime green to be reproduced accurately in any type of media or format. This helps maintain brand consistency across university applications.

Lime Green in Michigan State Traditions

Beyond just a color, lime green has become an integral part of many Michigan State traditions over the years. Some notable examples include:

  • The Spartan Spectacular – Also known as the “green and white game”, this annual football scrimmage closes spring practice. Fans wear lime green and white and watch the team play at Spartan Stadium.
  • Zeke the Wonder Dog – The beloved Michigan State mascot wears a lime green vest and bandana to Spartan games and events.
  • Sparty – The larger than life Michigan State costumed mascot Sparty wears a costume featuring lime green.
  • The Painted Tree – A campus landmark that gets painted lime green and white for football games.

These traditions and many others showcase the deep cultural connection between Michigan State and the color lime green in addition to its use in branding and athletics.

How Lime Green Represents Michigan State

For over 100 years, Michigan State lime green has stood as a symbol of the university’s values and identity. Here are some of the key attributes the distinctive color represents:

  • Agriculture – The original inspiration for the green hue representing Michigan’s agricultural industry.
  • Nature – The bright green shade evokes nature, trees, grass and the outdoors.
  • Uniqueness – The one-of-a-kind custom color makes Michigan State stand out.
  • Vibrancy – The bold, intense shade symbolizes the energy and spirit of Michigan State.
  • Tradition – Few schools have stood by a color so steadfastly for so long.

These positive attributes have made lime green become ingrained in Michigan State culture. It is now the instant identifier for the university to people across the country.


In summary, the Michigan State lime green color code is PMS 357 C or equivalents C50 M0 Y100 K0 and #90C900. This distinct color was specially formulated in 1915 and has been an integral part of MSU athletics and identity ever since. Over 100 years of consistent use in branding and traditions has made the lime green hue a beloved representation of the spirit and community of Michigan State.

When people see the one-of-a-kind lime green color, they instantly think of Michigan State University. It is a testament to the power of color in branding and creating lasting cultural symbols. Michigan State lime green has become one of the most iconic colors in college sports and Academia. Understanding the exact color code and history behind it allows for preserving its legacy well into the future.