Monday, May 20, 2024

Sports | Football

FOOTBALL

Maize flags leave MSU feeling blue

Michigan didn't need any extra help in its near-perfect 31-13 win against MSU on Saturday, but the Spartans gave them plenty. Penalties were a problem for the Green and White throughout the day, from early in the first quarter to the end of the game.

FOOTBALL

MSU QB recruit has near-perfect Homecoming

Quarterback Keith Nichol, an MSU commitment from the class of 2007, went 12-of-13 passing for 262 yards and three touchdowns in a 52-13 Homecoming win for Lowell High School on Friday, The Grand Rapids Press reported. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Nichol also scored two touchdowns on runs of 6 and 10 yards. "We're not surprised by Nichol's performance," Lowell head coach Noel Dean told the Press.

FOOTBALL

Monday musings

Ricky Williams suffered a gash on his left heel last week when a locker room door slammed shut behind him. Team doctors said Williams is in stable condition but strangely is still asking for medicinal marijuana. NBA commissioner David Stern received a proposal last week to expand the league to Europe in the near future. The sticking point: How would Dwyane Wade's 30 free throws a game translate into euros? The Miami Dolphins started former Detroit Lion Joey Harrington at quarterback Sunday in place of the struggling Daunte Culpepper. Not to be outdone, the Lions pulled their starting quarterback and replaced him with Scott Mitchell. New Hampshire wide receiver David Ball caught his 51st career touchdown pass Saturday, breaking Jerry Rice's NCAA Division I-AA record. Still safe: Marcus Vick's NCAA career arrests record. The Detroit Tigers wrapped up an American League Divisional Series victory on Saturday — their first playoff series win since 1984. In a touching tribute, Tigers closer Todd Jones was wearing the same pair of underwear he had on the last time Detroit won a playoff series. After that loss, Yankees owner George Steinbrenner wants manager Joe Torre fired, according to media reports. The leading candidate for Steinbrenner to replace Torre with: A big bag of money.

FOOTBALL

MSU, Illinois fined $10K for flag-planting fight

The Big Ten fined Illinois and MSU $10,000 each on Wednesday for a scuffle between players following the Spartans' 23-20 loss to the Fighting Illini on Saturday. After the game ended, Illinois players attempted to plant a flag at midfield in Spartan Stadium.

FOOTBALL

Ringer out for season; Stanton probable for U-M

The worst-case scenario is now reality. Sophomore running back Javon Ringer is out for the season. However, senior quarterback Drew Stanton is probable for Saturday's game against Michigan. During the second quarter of MSU's 23-20 loss to Illinois on Saturday, Ringer went down with an injured right knee after gaining three yards on a screen pass.

FOOTBALL

Out-juiced

On paper, the mismatches couldn't have been any more glaring. Illinois hadn't beaten MSU in its last nine tries, had only defeated one in-conference opponent in three years and had a true freshman nicknamed "Juice" taking the snaps from center. MSU had every reason to come out with guns blazing — what better way to erase the memory of last week's fourth-quarter implosion against Notre Dame than to drop 50 points on a Big Ten doormat? But what they lacked in talent, history and experience, the Fighting Illini made up for with the intangibles that seem to matter most in college football games. Intestinal fortitude.

FOOTBALL

MSU can't hold the line

It was a game that wasn't supposed to be close. MSU was expected to put up big offensive numbers against Illinois Saturday, answering any questions about the lingering effects of the Notre Dame collapse. But after a disappointing 23-20 loss, the Spartans failed to respond to that question and raised many more about an offense that put up just 259 total yards. "We should be able to put up 40 points on Illinois," senior center Kyle Cook said.

FOOTBALL

Smith explains sideline scrum, Caulcrick's absence

In football rivalry games, emotions often run high. Such was the case in MSU's game against Notre Dame on Saturday, when a late hit caused a sideline scuffle and an MSU investigation. Senior quarterback Drew Stanton was running out of bounds into the Notre Dame sideline in the second quarter when he was hit and got pinned under the opposing team's bench.

FOOTBALL

Where was Jehuu?

Jehuu Caulcrick ran through Notre Dame's defense like it didn't exist on Saturday. He may as well have had a list of Notre Dame defensive backs in his pocket so he could cross off the names of players he ran over. Tom Zbikowski: Check.

FOOTBALL

Fans deserve praise

Three games that come to mind when I think of an electric atmosphere in Spartan Stadium. Two of those games are from 2004, when heavily favored Minnesota and Wisconsin came into East Lansing only to see each of its Big Ten Championship hopes crumble. The "go green, go white" chants coming from the student section were so loud that they drowned out the PA announcer.

FOOTBALL

Few plays shouldn't change reputation

What have you done for me lately? This phrase is used often in sports. Coaches are judged on a game-by-game basis, and players are often judged on what they do when the game matters. And the phrase couldn't have resonated any louder than on Saturday, when judging the play of the two quarterbacks. Notre Dame's Brady Quinn struggled early, throwing just 2-of-8 for six yards in the first quarter.