Monday, June 24, 2024

Sports | Football

FOOTBALL

Spartans rush past Wisconsin in upset

MSU could have adjusted its offense and planned a way to get around Wisconsin's top-ranked defense. But the Spartans stuck to their strength, running the ball, and the Badgers could not do anything to stop them.

FOOTBALL

Crushing defeat

The frustration of back-to-back stinging losses is starting to wear on the Spartans and their coach. MSU blew a fourth-quarter lead for the second-straight game.

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Sore subject

Ann Arbor - When sophomore quarterback Drew Stanton walked down the tunnel at Michigan Stadium to begin the second half with his teammates, he wore a baseball cap instead of a helmet, sneakers instead of football cleats and MSU warm-ups instead of full pads. It was official - Stanton, after dissecting Michigan's defense almost at will in the first half, would not finish the game he started.

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What happened?

Ann Arbor - As the MSU team buses sat outside Michigan Stadium, head coach John L. Smith stared back at the "Big House" with a glazed look on his face. Perhaps Smith was thinking about what could have been, if his Spartans (4-4 overall, 3-2 Big Ten) had held onto their 17-point fourth quarter lead.

FOOTBALL

Wolverines past pain for Spartans

Even when the annual Michigan-MSU rivalry has Big Ten title implications, as it does this year, there's always room for verbal jabs. "I don't like none of them over there," senior bandit Tyrell Dortch said.

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Countdown to showdown

5. Oct. 6, 1956 MSU 9, U-M 0 The Oct. 6, 1956 game between then-No. 2 MSU and then-No. 5 Michigan had a lot of defense and barely any offense. This game marked the first time attendance at Michigan Stadium exceeded 100,000 people.

FOOTBALL

Teague's work ethic sets tone

When head coach John L. Smith publicly scolded the Spartans for poor practice habits earlier this season, he probably wasn't talking about junior running back Jason Teague. "He's one of the hardest-working guys involved in the program," running backs coach Reggie Mitchell said. Teague's work ethic is a big reason why he has been MSU's starting running back all season, which is a minor surprise considering the sometimes-brilliant performance of redshirt freshman Jehuu Caulcrick. Caulcrick can be a bruising runner who consistently gains yards when he gets in a groove, as in the fourth quarter of MSU's 38-25 win against Illinois last Saturday.

FOOTBALL

Special teams troubles continue

The MSU special teams have had its problems this season, and it continued Saturday against Illinois. A blocked punt, a mishandled extra point snap and another missed field goal all led to a long day for Spartans kickers - sophomore punter Brandon Fields and senior place-kicker Dave Rayner. At the beginning of the fourth quarter, Fields seemed to take his time catching the ball before trying to punt it.

FOOTBALL

Spartans spread the wealth in victory

The trick play called for receiver Jerramy Scott to pass to quarterback Drew Stanton, and the defense was so fooled, both players knew there would be no excuse for failure. Scott, with the football in hand, after receiving a pitch from Stanton, saw his sophomore quarterback streaking toward the end zone, wide open.

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At a loss

Iowa City, Iowa - MSU's performance against Iowa on Saturday was so bad that head coach John L.

FOOTBALL

Redshirt freshman steps up in game; 9 catches for 103 yards most by Spartans receiver this season

Iowa City, Iowa - Love was in the air Saturday. Terry Love, that is. The redshirt freshman caught his first career reception for 19 yards in the second quarter of MSU's 38-16 loss at Iowa on Saturday. Then he caught his second career ball on a 9-yard slant rout - good enough for another first down. His third career catch came two plays later, a 4-yard gain. After the next three plays, Love would add his fourth, fifth and sixth career catches. The only thing that could stop Love late in the second quarter was his shoe - which came off - forcing him to the sidelines. Love would add three more receptions to his not-so-long ago empty résumé in the second half, giving him nine on the day with 103 yards.

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Missed assignments, 464 total yards equate to loss

Iowa City, Iowa - After completely dominating Indiana's offense in the second half last week, the MSU defense could not put on an encore performance at Iowa. The Spartans (2-3 overall, 1-1 Big Ten) gave up 464 total yards to Iowa (3-2, 1-1) - the worst offensive team in the Big Ten prior to this weekend. "As far as the defense is concerned, I don't think we played very smart today," senior linebacker and captain Ron Stanley said.

FOOTBALL

Stanton to start at Iowa; provides leadership for Spartans

For the first time all season, no quarterback questions were asked to MSU head coach John L. Smith at his Monday press conference. Sophomore Drew Stanton is MSU's starting quarterback for Saturday's game against Iowa. Stanton is still recovering from the effects of his knee injury, but said for the first time in five weeks he did not have to get fluid drained out of his knee.

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Cool comeback

Bloomington, Ind. - As MSU's offense battled inconsistency and turnovers in the first half against Indiana, its defense held firm, eventually carrying the Spartans to a comeback win against Indiana. Sophomore quarterback Drew Stanton, with his spectacular running performance, was the face of MSU's 30-20 win, but the defense made his triumphant story possible. Coming out of the locker room at halftime, MSU (2-2 overall, 1-0 Big Ten) was losing, 20-7.