The Skinny: Michigan State University (M.S.U.) over Central Michigan University (C.M.U.), 41-7
Next Game: vs. Notre Dame University (N.D.): Saturday September 15, 2012 at Spartan Stadium, E. Lansing, MI at 8:00p.m.
T.V.: ABC Network
Next Blog: Thursday September 13, 2012: M.S.U. vs. N.D. Preview
Michigan State completely dominated play this afternoon in sunny Mt. Pleasant, MI as they defeated the Chippewa’s of C.M.U., 41-7. Michigan State moved their record to 2-0 as they look ahead to their toughest opponent yet this year, the famed Irish of N.D. That game will be the second night game in a row at Spartan Stadium. While today’s score may indicate the Spartans are ready for next week, if you look a little deeper into their performance you may draw another conclusion.
Offensive Overview: Quarterback (QB) play is still a major concern for Michigan State. It took starting QB Andrew Maxwell until the third quarter to get into a good rhythm. On the first three drives, he was only 5-9 for 30 yards. One major misconnection seems to be with starting wide out Keith Mumphrey. Maxwell was only 4-11 when throwing his direction today. While Maxwell’s numbers look good, finishing a respectable 20-31 for 275 yards and two TD’s, you have to take into context he compiled these numbers against the worst secondary he will face all year.
What is most telling of Maxwell and the entire offenses lack of maturity are the results from the Spartans first three drives. The Spartans had excellent field position, starting on their 40, the C.M.U. 32 and the C.M.U. 18. The result of these three drives was seven points, two penalties for 15 yards, 34 net yards and one missed field goal. You can get away with results like this against one of the worst teams from the Mid-American Conference; however you won’t against Big Ten foes Ohio State and Michigan. They will make you pay with their quick strike offenses. Before you know it, you’re slow and plodding run heavy offense will be down by 14. If this team is going to repeat as Legends Division Champions the offense must improve greatly.
Defensive Overview: In the first two games the Big Green unit has given up a grand total of six points. The lone bad spot today was a C.M.U. drive that went 66 yards on 15 plays while racking up six first downs. That drive ended by the defense forcing C.M.U. into throwing three incomplete passes in a row from the Spartans 27 to end the lone scoring threat.
Special Teams: The continued lack of accuracy from kicker Dan Conroy is a major concern. Conroy missed from 39 yards today and 43 yards last week against Boise State. Again, against tougher opponents the Spartans will need those points to win.
The Dr’s Final Thoughts: While the offense struggled early, the offensive line dominated when it needed to. QB Maxwell and his receivers made some nice connections and helped to put up 34 points in three quarters of play. The defensive play is excellent and there is no need for concern there. Overall it was a good team win that made sure the Spartans continued to build momentum toward their 2012 goals.
About the Author
Written by Andre' Wiegand
A life long Michigan State University Spartan fan! My grandfather played on the Spartan O-Line back in 1951 and my family has been Spartan fans since. 1999 M.S.U. graduate (JMC). Currently live in Grand Rapids, MI with my wife and two sons.