If you missed watching last night’s game with MSU versus Maryland, there was a lot of the same ol’, same ol’. . . missed tackles, missed assignments in the defensive secondary, and absolutely stupid penalties. It was obvious that Riley Bullough realized that someone had inspire the team. But, three personal fouls in the first quarter, including one for targeting sent him to showers early which also makes him ineligible for the first half of next week’s game. Unfortunately, the “I gotta win this game for the team” strategy only works in basketball. Too many things (good blocking, good tackling, communication between teammates, balanced play-calling) have to fall into place in order to win games. Here are the positives- Brian Lewerke showed that he can keep the Spartans in the game with his running ability and ever- emerging “pocket presence” and LJ and Gerald rushed hard. Honestly, QB TOC took too many sacks and wasn’t a threat to run the ball. TOC is skilled, for sure, but the offense now belongs to Brian Lewerke- definitely reminiscent of how Connor Cook took over for another fifth year senior, Andrew Maxwell. Good times ahead for MSU! I just hope it’s sooner rather than later.
MSU ran for a season high 270 yards which usually means we win the game. Unfortunately, when teams struggle, they can’t overcome critical mistakes- Monte Madaris’ fumble after a nice catch and run deep into MD territory, blown coverage in the secondary on a MD TD pass, and allowing one long run after another by several MD running backs. If we stop the MD’s running game. . . if DB’s cover better (what happened to the No Fly Zone?). . . if Monte hangs onto the ball and we score, we win the game.
Final Score – Maryland 28, MSU 17
Up next, UM-MSU:
It’s really easy to look at this game and say MSU doesn’t have a chance. On paper, U-M should blow out MSU. U-M has the number 1 defense in the country and the most exciting player in College Football- Jabril Peppers. Most pundits believe that defense wins national titles. With Quarterback Wilton Speight playing solid football- nothing flashy, he just gets the job done- U-M is definitely a title contender. They are 7-0. U-M players know that MSU owns U-M for the last 7 years. They will not only try and win, but run up the score, call us “Little Brother” or some other “brilliant” insult that comes from Ann Arbor.
In the summer, many of us felt that both teams would enter this game at 7-0 and we would have one heckuva afternoon of football. Spartan fans are hoping there is some switch that turns on before next Saturday where the team musters up its will to go out and compete. And they have to compete well in order to proudly walk off the field. On paper, it could be a blow-out. But MSU has good athletes, good coaches, and a history of success. MSU needs an outstanding performance in order to keep the team, the University, and the Spartan faithful from being embarrassed.
“Tough times don’t last, tough people do”- Kirk Cousins