Friday, May 24, 2024

Smoker nursing shoulder, Van Dyke practicing, Dortch home from Madison hospital

November 13, 2001

They are definitely not blockbuster movies by any means.

But regardless, MSU will take plenty of time this week analyzing film to try and correct the mistakes made in Saturday’s 37-28 loss to Indiana.

After looking over some game film Sunday, MSU head coach Bobby Williams said Monday that the Spartans’ performance against the Hoosiers was even more disappointing than he first thought.

“I was really amazed at how poorly we played as a team,” Williams said. “Defensively we weren’t able to stop the run, offensively we weren’t able to score points when we needed to and (there was) poor execution in the kicking game.”

Still Smokin‘?

The Spartans could be without the services of sophomore quarterback Jeff Smoker, who sustained a mild sprain in his left shoulder Saturday.

Smoker, who was sidelined for Monday’s practice, is considered “questionable” against Purdue on Saturday, Williams said.

“A lot is going to depend on what he can tolerate,” Williams said.

“On Saturday I thought he hung in there, he was in a lot of pain.”

If Smoker is not healthy enough by as early as Thursday, then redshirt freshman quarterback Damon Dowdell will most likely start, Williams said.

Dowdell took all of the first string snaps in Monday’s practice, and freshman quarterback Aaron Alexander moved to second string.

Dowdell’s speed and elusiveness on the run provide an added element to MSU’s offense, which ranks first in the conference in passing.

“If Damon is the guy, it’s going to give us a little bit more of a different dimension because Damon is more of a threat with the ball in his hands,” he said. “That will change us a little bit, but we’re going to continue to do some of the same things we have been doing.”

“We may add something else to the package because of the type of athlete he is.”

In an emergency situation, senior Ryan Van Dyke could see action if he’s cleared by doctors this week, Williams said.

Van Dyke, who has been practicing in noncontact drills for the past two weeks, has been out since Oct. 20 with a fractured jaw.

Dortch comes home

Sophomore cornerback Tyrell Dortch returned to East Lansing after spending more than two weeks in a Madison, Wis., hospital after breaking his lower right leg Oct. 27.

Surgeons made two openings on both sides of Dortch’s leg to release the extreme amount of pressure that was built up around his leg, Williams said.

“The most important thing right now is for him to be able to get back on his feet and function,” Williams said. “They thought the surgery went extremely well, they didn’t have to do any skin grafting or anything like that.”

Because Dortch has missed a significant amount of classes, the NCAA and MSU will waive his fall semester so he can rehab, he said.

Dortch’s eligibility will be based on his second semester after he re-enrolls for spring classes.


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