Notebook: Spartans need to contain their emotions against Michigan
The Spartans know it. The Wolverines know it. The entire state of Michigan knows it.
It's Michigan-MSU week. Rivalry week, whatever fans of the two teams want to call it.
Trash talk has already begun. Spartan fans can point to their recent Big Ten championships, but the Wolverines took care of their in-state rivals last year 32-23.
Head coach Mark Dantonio took the podium Tuesday to pour over questions, concerns as his Spartans head into Michigan Stadium.
"We have to maintain our emotion throughout the week and bring that to Saturday, as well, and can not have a setback in that area," Dantonio said. "Big rivalry game, as well. Everybody understands that."
Strong defenses clash
While U-M has made headlines with its vaunted defense the past few years, for at least the first four games, MSU is not far behind.
The Wolverines currently rank first in the nation in total defense, allowing just an average of 203.3 yards per game.
However, the Spartans are ranked fifth in the same stat, yielding 248.3 total yards a game.
Saturday Night Lights
For the first time ever in the rivalry, the Spartans and Wolverines duel under the lights in a night game. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Michigan Stadium.
Though it doesn't change anything for MSU.
"We've been playing some games at night in the past, but it's tough to wait around all day," Dantonio said. "They tell you where to show up, you show up and play. That's got to be our M.O."
The Wolverines are currently predicted to win by a score of 31.9-19.1.
No significant changes in the depth chart
MSU's depth chart was largely unchanged going into the game against U-M. Right guard David Beedle didn't dress against Iowa, but he was still listed as the starter. True freshman Kevin Jarvis started in his place.
However, the depth chart is not the de facto list for who the Spartans will start. Some players, despite being listed as a backup, have started.
Looking ahead to Minnesota
After the Spartans and Wolverines wage war at Michigan Stadium, Big Ten play will continue. It is just MSU's second conference game of the season, after all.
Awaiting the green and white on Oct. 14 will be the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Kickoff for the away game is set for 8 p.m., MSU's next second straight night game.