How good will Michigan State be next year without this group of seniors? Since 2011 I had always assumed MSU would have a strong team through 2013 based on the group of defensive players that graduate this year. But, MSU also has a number of offensive players graduating this year too, namely 3 offensive linemen. But, the majority of difference makers will be lost on defense including Lewis, Dennard, Bullough, Allen, Hoover, and Reynolds. I also wonder if Drummond may enter the draft. That’s a lot of experienced defenders up the middle. I personally see them taking a step back next year. What are your thoughts? I know it seems silly to worry about MSU but lets face, they’ve won 5 of the last 6 and we haven’t beaten them in E. Lansing since Carr and “Little brother”.
How good will MSU be next year?
We've been calling that for the past 5 years and it hasn't happened. The senior contributers you named were made by the great coaching staff, and are by no means irreplaceable. They'll graduate, new guys will step up, MSU will remain very very good.
I think they will be pretty good as well, but I don't think it's out of the question that their defense takes a significant step back (i.e. being only top 20, rather than top 3). Their offense seems to have hit its stride, so they will have an above average unit on both sides of the ball. They will be a 9+ win team.
Hasn't happened? I'm pretty sure they lost 6 games last year.
MSU has a good team this year, but they're not a Bama-like machine that never needs to rebuild. Part of what's made them so good this year is that at most positions they're starting upperclassmen.
MSU was a good team last year, and their record doesn't reflect it. They lost 6 games, yes, but their defense kept them in every game, and every loss was extremely close (save ND, where MSU still held them to 300 total yards and 1-14 on third down).
People keep pointing to last year as some sort of proof that MSU isn't really that good, but I think the evidence suggests that last year was the exception to the rule that they've been a consistently very good team the last five or six years.
and 12-1. Dantonio has as many 5 plus loss seasons as he does 11 plus seasons. He alternates brilliance with mediocrity.
and complete mediocrity.
That doesn't address Magnum's point. The past four seasons to me is a better indicator of MSU and Dantonio's coaching quality (11-3, 11-2, 7-6, 12-1). Yes, Dantonio's first 3 seasons can be labeled "mediocre," but an upward trend is sure more encouraging than the reverse (especially considering the state MSU was at when he took over).
Plus, although MSU had a 7-6 record last year, I was left with an uneasy feeling since many of those losses were so close....sure "loss is a loss," but there was glimpse of hope for the next season for them since it was clear what MSU had to do to make the next step -- make their offense go from atrocious to marginally competent...something MSU coaching staff has done well.
Our offensive deficiency was made pretty clear this season...I''m looking forward to see how coach and Hoke will come back the next season (and I'm sure Hoke understands the importance of this coming season).
in 2011 UM's program was in a simiiar state to MSU's when Smith left. It had cratered. Becuase of that it takes time to build. Year Four should tell us a lot about Hoke and his staff.
The Michigan football program had not "cratered" in 2011. "Cratered" programs don't finish 11-2 with a BCS win.
make their offense go from atrocious to marginally competent...something MSU coaching staff has done well.
This is interesting - just two months ago, Bollman was a laughingstock, even in East Lansing. With a veteran OL he got his unit to perform as the year went on. (OSU fans are still in disbelief that a Bollman offense beat them.) Next year, breaking in a new OL, will he be able keep it up? We'll see.
Does Bollman call the plays? I thought I read somewhere that he isn't handling those duites.
I hate, hate, hate that argument. Michigan State was 4-5 in 2012 in games decided by five points or less. It isn't like their 7-6 record was just a result of bad luck.
We know why Dantonio rode Leveon Bell so much last season. Maxwell was a bad QB and Cook wasn't ready. I give Dantonio credit for having the stones to sit the senior and play the better QB. I wish Hoke had played DG at QB and moved Denard to WR/HB hybrid at the start of 2012.
Well for the past four years they've had the second best winning percentage in the Big Ten, so I think he's got his program in pretty good shape (we're fifth over that span).
in the big ten. It was an unprecedented achievement. . .
And they won every Big 10 game this year by 10+ point, an uprecedented achievement in the modern era of the conference (post 1950). Sort of hilarious how so many people cling onto 2012 as the rule rather than the exception of the rule. It took him a few years to build the base but the last 4 years he has 3 years of excellence there and 1 average/bad year. If you look at Harbaugh's record he had "3 years of mediocrity" before exploding in year 4 with a great record. So if he had continued 3 more years with Stanford people here I guess would say well Harbaugh is up and down - look at his first 3 years at Stanford!! Makes zero sense.
If anyone has been the exception it has been Michigan's 11 win season as it is out of place with the record the past 6 years. Whereas MSU's exception lately was the 7 win season. I'd rather have their exception than ours. They look to be a 9 to 10 win team next year with a tough road game at Oregon.
They get Nebraska at home, UM at home, and OSU at home. Frankly they will be favored in all but 2 of their games IMO and OSU I think will be taking a step back with OL losses and Hyde gone so they should be favored in that game as well. The road Oregon game will be the only obvious underdog in 2014. Maybe PSU on the road depending on Hackenberg has that team rolling.
Who pissed in your Wheaties?
7-6, and 12-1. So three great seasons and two very mediocre seasons.
You don't just replace guys like Dennard. Even times like LSU don't see MSU certainly will not. Also Narduzzi appears to be interviewing with Uconn. His time at MSU is coming to an end.
Losing those 3 guys for msu will be huge. I watched a replay of the 1997 Ohio / Michigan in which Michigan had one of the greatest defenses I can remember seeing play. Woodson was absolutely a game changer. One of the coaches interviewed during the Big Ten network telecast was talking with coach carr and said neither one of them could believe how the loss of one player (referring to the loss of Woodson the following year) could so drastically affect the complexion of their entire defense/team.
Now take a look at the confidence msu put in Bullough and denard. Bullough did everything right. Denard locked receivers down all game...allowing them to blitz and not get burned. I gotta believe they will feel their loss a lot next season.
Waynes who is a 2 or 3 star 2011 player has played nearly as well as Dennard in the games I have watched. In fact I think Dennard PI's more than Waynes. This sounds a lot like "once Greg Jones goes, MSU D will return to form". They have 2 lockdown corners this year - next year they will probably have 1 and then a young guy they develop who will turn into one by 2015.
But to say he's anywhere near Dennard is outlandish.
For the last 5 years? 5 years ago they had a losing record (6-7).
Last year they went 7-6. So it's happened.
People are writing a revisionist history now when it comes to MSU. They had a spectacular season, but they've been pretty up and down under Dantonio. That's not a knock on him. It's just people are suddenly acting like they are a juggernaut of a program when they clearly aren't.
Most of the years they've been up of late their record has been inflated by a laughably weak schedule, much like ours was in 2011.
I would guess that if you go back and look at their record versus ranked teams it would probably be a losing record over that same 5 year span. No better than five hundred.
In short, the Big Ten is embarrasingly bad.
As I pointed out elsewhere. And if they drop a game to a team like Wyoming, Rutgers or Maryland, then the part about the B1G being "embarrassingly bad" is - sadly - very true.
aren't they the 2009 recruiting class? Wasn't out recruiting a class a disaster that year? I'm thinking this is the last of Dantonio feasting on our recruiting difficulties under Rich Rod. I believe the tides are going to start turning again.
I agree with you and I think all of yoru points are spot on!
Not to be a jerk or anything, but PurpleStuff has this covered elsewhere. It's difficult to make the case (at least as far as the '13 Spartan team is concerned) that their success is due to our '09 class (which, in fact, may prove to be better than the four preceding it).
I remember after getting stoned in 2011 looking at their 2 deep on defense and being deflated when I saw just how young that defense was. Mark D. has built a program that is going to stay good but I have little doubt that this was a high water mark.
If he keeps stringing 11 win seasons together the recruiting will improve...the whole conference may be in trouble. He's basically Jim Tressel but lacking in the "facility" department.
A small step back.
Major losses will be Max Bullough and Dennard on defense. All the other seniors are replaceable. Ed Davis who burst on the scene the last 4-5 games, will take Denicos Allen spot. They lose some guys up front, but Calhoun is going to be preseason All American. Bullough will be replaced by Reschke it looks like or maybe his younger brother - that is the main spot they will take a few steps back. As for the other corner they have a bunch of youngsters and Dantonio has shown he just finds athletes and plugs them in as corner... so it will be a step back since you lose a NFL draft pick at senior but Dennard was a 2 star and they are getting better than 2 stars now to replace.
They were a top 10 defense in 2011 and 2012, and I expect a top 10-12 defense in 2014...it just wont be #1 overall.
On offense just about every skill player other than Fowler returns. Cook will be a year in the system and took massive steps late in the year; has a NFL arm and is very Stanton like but with a better arm (and less of a runner)... lots of moxie and 3rd down production. Langford has been a frigging revelation at RB, and Delton Williams who is their version of Green will help him in 2014. The main issue is OL - as you stated they lose some seniors but have a 0 star playing left tackle and their center was an All American freshman in 2012 and did fine this year. The guy they took from OSU as co-offensive coordinator seems to be their main OL guy and he really shored up that one area which has been a MSU weakness under Dantonio. I say a step back there but they were rotating some 8-9 OLs in this year so not as much as people would hope.
As others have said people around these parts have been saying "they will take a step back once so and so leaves" for a few years now. With their ability to develop players and their pipeline starting to turn up (instead of recruiting in the 40s they are starting to get into the low 30s and have a chance for upper 20s - along with heavy favorites for a lot of 2015 Michigan kids) there are going nowhere until Dantonio leaves the program. Michigan has not been competitive with them the past few years aside from their worst team in 4 years, which we beat by a massive 2 points at home.
They've won 4 out of the last 5.
I got a little trigger happy. I edited the post. But, they actually won 5 of the last 6.
Only way to combat that is to be great every year. Let's hope we can get back on that track.
I literally just finished typing a comment in another thread posing this exact question, then before I hit save look over and see this title. That's the real question that needs answering, and I have no idea. I expected them to be only ok this year, they exceeded all expectations. I hope they fall flat, but doubt they will. Hope like hell I'm wrong.
... to "graduation."
Narduzzi, graduating to a head coaching job. Dantonio, graduating to a richer and/or more attractive program. A Texas, a South Carolina, a Georgia, a Miami, a Tennessee. Pick whatever Top 20 program you want, and among the 4 or 5 of those where there might be a vacancy.
The Dantonio buyout is, I think, around $3m. The other little thing is that after he hangs around for 2014, Dantonio gets an automatic longevity bonus of what I think is more than a million. So start with a price tag of $4m just to talk to Dantonio. His annual salary is around $1.85m if I recall correctly.
Narduzzi going to UConn or a similiar school. He has been MSU's DC since Mork came to MSU.
MSU has been pointing to this season because they are aware of how much they are losing. The loss of Narduzzi far outweighs the personnel losses because you have no way of knowing if his successor will be anywhere as good.
I think Dantonio loves sticking it to UM so much that he'll never go anywhere. I think he thrives as the underdog. Although I think there's a fair chance Narduzzi leaves sonner rather than later. But, I think this whole wish this coach or that coach would leave for (insert NFL or non-B1G team here) is a bit wishful thinking. Ultimately there will always be Pete Carrolls, Urban Meyers, Jim Tressels, Nick Sabans, Mark Dantonios etc. somewhere. If UM is ever going to be what we want them to be we have to be able to beat these coaches. You can't wish for them to go away, you have to accept the challenge and face it head on.
It's my understanding that MD has a singificant involvement in the defense -- schematics and playcalling -- so who knows how much Narduzzi will impact him. He learned under Saban and DC'd the 2002 OSU championship team.
significant imput that defense is clearly Narduzzi's. He is the one who coaches it, who designs the schemes, and who calls the play. Dantonio is a head coach and as such he has more to worry about than what the defense is doing.
Don't mistake me. I don't think MSU will be terrible defensively. I just don't think they will be as dominant as they have been. There is going to be a dropoff.
To me, this is a debate where both sides have merit. Losing Narduzzi can't be considered a positive. I mean, MSU's defense has been dominant under here, so you have a proven commodity. Having said that, we know Dantonio is a defensive minded coach that influences the defense. Along with this, why would we assume Dantonio couldn't find a quality replacement for a unit bubbling with depth, experience, and talent. Maybe I'm underrating Narduzzi, but if there is a drop-off, I just wouldn't predict it being that significant, at least in the near future.
This exact post, word-for-word.
I doubt Dantonio goes anywhere. He's probably not all that far from retirement. Narduzzi on the other hand is probably gone.
He said 10 years. Now, I don't believe it is 10 years to a tee, but that's a pretty reasonable length, especially seeing as he has a heart condition. I think he has 4 more years or so left in him.
Narduzzi's best contribution was from an emotional stand-point and in game adjustments from my POV. Not that he isn't great in the other aspects, but the other aspects can be made up for with Dantonio and their staff remaining consistent. If Dantonio holds onto his D staff (rather than some going with Narduzzi) then I expect them to pretty much keep on track as far as most defensive stuff.
defensive team, but I just don't see them as being as consistently outstanding as they are now.
lieing but Narduzzi claims to have designed that defense along with Scott Schaeffer at some d3 school. I don't know where the idea that hes just an emotianl leader came from. Dantonio never had a defense that good at OSU, If Narduzzi leaves I think it will be a huge loss.
They'll take a step back. 8-9 wins.
About how good msu will be, I care about how good we will be..when I say we I mean Michigan
Thanks now back to drinking this Mikes harder lemonade
Pass me some of the Smirnoff Ice.
4 pack of Bartles&Jaymes for me tonight...I gotta work in the morning.
I think they will win between 5-10 games next year depending on the vagaries of football.
Maybe I'm from a different generation, but I just assume the Spartans will return to their usual Spartan self of being Little Brother. They've had a few good years, but the natural order of things will eventually take hold and they will go back to beating themselves and choking.
I don't think that's going to happen. Dantonio has brought a new culture to that program. The Sparty-No days are over as long as he's there.
They also play Oregon in Week 2 at Oregon.. Then the schedules re-align with the new teams entering and they have a very hard schedule next year.. I see them winning 8
I don't understand all this newfound belief in the permanence of MSU's program when just one year ago, they were coming off a 6-6 regular season (3-5 in league play).
Well, they've won 10 or more games in 3 of the past 4 years. Anyone care to look up how often Michigan has done that?
Also Carr had three 10 seasons to close out the 90's.
the extra games played now as compared to the 90's and before
It's actually 11 or more in 3 of the past 4 seasons. I don't think Michigan has ever done that - granted there is 1 more game nowadays plus a conference championship game if you qualify for. But there is a difference between 10 win season and 11 win. Hoke needs to win 11 games in the next 3 of 4 seasons to match this achievement - that is a tall task.
I agree in general about Dantonio's proven ability to plug in the next guy. But they're losing some pretty instrumental guys on that defense that won't be easily replaced. Bullough, Allen, and Lewis have been rocks in the middle of that defense for three years. And Dennard has been lock-down. They'll be some adjustment for MSU next year.
Dantonio has established a program that is going to produce 8-10 wins a year for a while; even if he retires in the next year or two the table is set with a solid coaching tree. However they cannot sustain a championship-level of success with how they have been recruiting and will likely continue to recruit in the foreseeable future. They capitalized on a good amount of talent during the Rodriguez years and the OSU coaching transition that it is paying dividends now, and they have done a good job of developing low-rated recruits but as the talent they have accumulated begins to cycle off the roster they will take a step back.
Don't get me wrong, their coaching is phenominal and they should expect to be in "the discussion" for years to come but I think they won't be going to another Rose Bowl for a long, long time.
Three of their current 22 starters were 4-star recruits on Rivals. One of those guys came because his dad was on the MSU staff (Treadwell) and another came because every single member of his family ever has played football at MSU (Bullough).
Their success is not the result of some brief golden age of recruiting success or the result of Michigan or Ohio State slipping up and not getting the guys they wanted. Their success is based on coaching and Mark Dantonio having as good an eye for unheralded talent as any coach in the country.
They didn't slip when Cousins, Worthy, Jones, Bell, etc. left, so expecting them to do so now seems more like wishful thinking than anything else.
No offense to evenyoubrutus, but I'm surprised it took this long to find a post crediting Sparty's rise to the brief falls of OSU and UMich. That, flawed as it may be, is conventional wisdom for many here. (They love to point to the '09 Sparty class in particular and blame it all on the 3-9 UMich season that preceded it by only a few weeks. As if the two were related ...)
As PurpleStuff noted, MSU's success didn't have that much to do with what happened here and in Columbus. They really weren't completing for the same players.
It isn't a black and white issue. Sparty is good because their coaches are unbelievably good at fundamental skill development and creating as close to a flawless system as you can with the players they have. I'm not saying they aren't gonna be good for the next few years, I'm saying they are not going to be winning championships like this. You can be a 9-10 win team without winning championships.
It's funny -- I agree with everything you just said. I was referring to this part of your other post:
"They capitalized on a good amount of talent during the Rodriguez years and the OSU coaching transition that it is paying dividends now ....."
Again, I don't think there are too many cases where you can say "This/that 4th-/5th-year guy is at MSU because OSU and UMich were floundering back then." They've been working with Midwestern run-off (at least, as measured by Rivals and Scout rankings).
Ah I see. I suppose my argument did change slightly throughout the debate as my original point was shot down in flames.
Yes, they did slip when Cousins left. Their success this year is owed to Cook's maturation as a QB. Without a competent offense MSU loses 4-5 games.
If you would have said player development I could understand, but to say Dantonio has an eye for talent that other coaches do not doesn't make much sense to me. They offer many of the guys on our team and simply dont get them. They offered RJS, Wormley, Ross, Funchess, Ojemudia, Braden, Godin, Strobel, Williams, and Norfleet. And, that's just the 2012 class. They take the best talent they can get, just like everyone else. They just develop them better than us so far, and have a consistent system in place.
Not sure you can say they have developed talent better than us to this point.. Unless you are referring to the RR years..
Dantonio is in his 7th year and they had 15 5th year seniors playing on their team, and 24 seniors in total. They have been able to built up a great amount of depth over the past 4 to 5 years where we haven't had the luxury of redshirting our best players.
After 3 years under dantonio they were 6-7.. And the MSU fanbase wanted Narduzzi fired because his defense was a joke and they claimed Dantonio sucked and couldn't develop talent..
Well guess what, years later they have depth and can usher in new talent without having to play a boatload of freshman like we did this year..
We started more freshman than we ever have in program history this year, and we still could of gone 10-2 ish if we had some better offensive playcalling or young line play.. If we aren't doing anything with all the upper classmen we will have in the next couple years then ill be extremely concerned. Or hoke will prob be fired regardless
You are correct on the star rating fact and I was wrong to post that without checking my facts in advance, however I still believe that no team, no matter how good the coaches are, can sustain CHAMPIONSHIP levels of success on a yearly basis with how msu is recruiting.
If it were really about development and talent was only in the eye of the beholder, then Rod Marinelli would have at least 4 super bowl rings right now.
I dont think anyone is saying they are going to be a championship team every year. I think some of us are saying they are at a Wisconsin level now where a "bad year" every 4th or 5th year is 7-6, and their good years are competing for Rose Bowls. So this is a far cry from the Sparty of the past 4 decades. And being in our division it is another major roadblock.
You nailed it Purplestuff. I love the meme of "MSU just had a great crop of talent that they developed in 2009 and 2010 and this cannot continue". Or meme #2 "Well they took advantage of UM's downfall and took our players!" What players? There is only a tiny overlap on the players we have been recruiting the past half decade. This is the same group of people who said "now that Cousins is gone - which Dantonio lucked out on - they will go back to being Sparty".
They had 2 freaking 4 stars on this defense. The rest are 2 and 3 stars. What great crop of talent did they luck on? Dantonio can identify talent and project it, and coach it. His position coaches obviously are good at doing that as well. Tressel said Dantonio was the best he saw who could do this. It is not going to change. That doesnt mean MSU wins 11 games every year for the next 7 years. But it means they will continue that talent identification and success. He has built a system ala Wisconsin and fits the talent to that system. If he starts to get the McDowell's of the world it is really going to be interesting as we saw in 2002 what he can do with 4 star talent all over his defense.
"they won't be going to another Rose Bowl for a long, long time", I'm hoping you mean another quarter-century drought for spartie?
I'm all in favor of that thought/wish!
In reality, though, I just don't have a good feeling that they will go away quietly and quickly. MD has built a solid program that will very likely benefit from their success of both this year and what they've been able to do over the last half-decade. Recruits that used to downplay or ignore being contacted by State will now pay a little more attention.
Someone above speculated that Dantonio would be around for about another 4 seasons---sounds about right to me, too. Even if Narduzzi does leave for UConn or elsewhere after the current season, isn't it highly possible he does it as a stepping stone towards returning with HC experience once MD retires?
Going back to the original title question in this thread, though, I'd say a drop-off to around 8 or 9 wins is the most likely 2014 scenerio.
At this point, I'll believe they take a step back when they have a 7-5 season. I was so sure this was the beginning of the end this year after the first few games and now they've climbed higher than ever. Their defense probably won't budge and their offense will probably be just competant enough to get them to 10+ wins again
Dantonio has as many 5 plus loss seasons as he does 11 plus win seasons.
Yes, you've made this point many times. Are you arguing that MSU won't be good next year?
for years to come. MSU's style of play has them involved in a lot of close games. Games that kill or enhance seasons. I just don't see the elite talent needed on offense to offset the adjustment period the defense will need. Youth as we have seen can create a lot of problems no matter how well coached a team is.
MSU won every B1G by double digits, including the championship game. You keep mentioning how MSU did not have a great season last year. True. What is missed is that in the bowl game, Connor Cook started and MSU won. Maxwell started three games this year, and MSU somewhat struggled in all three. Cook started his first game against ND, and it was a very close loss. The rest is history. Talk all you want about the losses on the defense and Narduzi, but Cook is the real deal--an NFL quarterback. MSU struggles were not because of their defense, it was their offense. Every team losses players. MSU returns the core of what could be an excellent offense and a good defense. Rest your hopes on a MSU's mediocre record last year if that helps.
Seasons as head coach in a BCS conference
I think we have a much better sample size for one than we do for the other.
but that ignores the fact that those times look to be largely behind him.
Maybe they see a blip again next year like they saw in 2012, but they have an extremely solid program built up over there. They won't go away till most of that staff leaves or the current staff gets old and starts to taper off
had three straight 10 plus win seasons in his third, fourth, and fifth seasons.The point is that in football trends can disappear as quickly as they appear. Will that be the case here? I have no idea. All I know is that MSU's style play is awfully similiar to what Carr did at Michigan except MSU has nowhere near the offensive skill Carr had.
FTR I agree with you.
I feel like their program has a much better foundation right now. We seem to be getting flashier recruits but it's yet to pay off.
Some of their substance has to do with Dantonio being there 7? years. He redshirts a lot of guys. They don't just get thrown in their their freshmen year because they have no other option.
They definitely have had our number as of late. I guess we will see next year how our guys develop. What scares me is their defensive system is so fundamentally sound....which I realize has to do with guys like Bullough etc that will be exiting.
In summary, I would say we have a decent shot next year at beating them based on who they are losing. If we "grow" as a team offensively and defensively...we are starting to get the depth / talent we need to compete with anyone.
I'd guess from here on out with msu and OSU we might expect to split every other year. Going to be some dog fights fellas.
I meant splitting. Win one. Lose one. It's hard to win rivalries year in /year out. Especially now that our rivals have quality coaches.
If we don't start winning vs msu/Ohio, hoke and co. may be in trouble.
They'll take a step back just because they're losing so much on defense. Dennard, Allen, Bullough, Lewis, Reynolds are all have expiring eligilibility (and Drummond and Calhoun might decide to get on the train and leave early, though Calhoun would be a stretch maybe).
I'll admit that I thought the same thing after the 2010 season, when they lost Greg Jones, Eric Gordon, Rucker, and Hyde. Dantonio coached up a bunch of three-star freshmen and sophomores in 2011 and their defense was even better, though. I think this year is more of a loss than 2010, and they'll be less formidable next year.
They lose three starters on the OL, too.
In sum, you probably have to assume they'll probably be a top-25-caliber team next year just based on Dantonio's track record in getting defenses ready. I don't expect top-10 again, though.
There's really no reason to believe that.
Mark Dantonio won a NC as defensive coordinator at OSU and Narduzzi has spent his entire life as a DC under Mark Dantonio. I'll take Dantonio between the two of them.
How much of that 02' season was due to him? Considering the fact that Tressell won 4 national titles at YSU I'd say Tressell had a significant influence on that team. Dantonio has not won a national title without Tressell.
Tressell never won a national title at OSU without Dantonio. If you want to attribute any and all success to those around him then there's really no reason to continue discussing this.
I'm just applying your logic to other parts of his career. Dantonio is an outstanding coach, but there is no doubt that he has had help from other outstanding coaches in his career.
Good coaches know that to win you need other good coaches around you to succeed. Tressell surely knows this.(Dantonio, Heacock) as did Bo.(James, McCartney)
My question is how will MSU respond to a loss of an outstanding DC in Narduzzi? That is the question none of us know.
How about we worry about us?
How are we going to do in a division that is 10x harder than the Legends?
ohio is ohio, sparty will be on the road, Michigan was supposed to clobber PSU this year, IU
I don't see how "worrying about us" is going to affect anything next year. We are fans. We have no effect on the development of Michigan's players, the play calling, etc.
You know those Bud Light "it's only weird if it doesn't work" commercials about fans?
I was actually taking akron & uconn seriously and not laying back and laughing at their record like everyone else going into the game.
Cool. Obviously it really helped the team's performance.
Yeah, that wasn't a very fun 2-game stretch. Or a kind one to my blood pressure.
I didn't set my car on fire before either of those games, but I'm not sure I can conclude that it will help simply because we did poorly when I didn't do it.
Michigan knows it has to be much, much better. I don't know what else has to be said.
Seniors on MSU's roster:
There are a few juniors/redshirt sophomores who could try to take the money and run (Shilique Calhoun, Kurtis Drummond, Jeremy Langford, Marcus Rush), too. At this point I expect them to reload defensively, but their offense seems to be a little more mercurial.
What I do care about is our team improving and beating them next year in E.L. We've got enough defense. We just need the offense to show up and keep Devin upright.
QB: Obviously will be fine with Cook coming back and having pretty decent depth at the position.
RB: Will be good. Hill is probably their 4th best back. Langford has another year still.
TE: Same group is back, will actually have some experience at the position. Their TE group didn't really start coming along until the end of the year as far as any sort of receiving threat.
WR: Lots of numbers there. Fowler is a decent player, but I see this group slightly improving from experience.
OL: Will take a slight step back, but they have some decent 2nd team players. Conklin will continue to grow and improve his footwork at LT. They lose two on the interior (France and Treadwell) that have been the strength of that OL, but Clark is a quick footed albeit a bit small OG that will be pretty decent. One of Allen or Jackson will slide to the other OG position and those are pretty good replacements. Scary position is RT, where they don't really have a good replacement. Clark may slide out there, but that isn't optimal. Finley could be good down the road but still needs to improve footwork (I'm guessing from where he came in at). Kruse is probably the next one in, but that isn't optimal. They won't have as much depth next year as this year.
DE: Will bring back both DEs for probably their last year (I bet Calhoun leaves after his RS JR year). I think Rush is pretty much what he is (he's Roh if Roh had a position for 4 years). Calhoun will continue to improve and should be solid. MSU really needs Cooper to come around if they want decent pass rush depth at the position, Heath is more a SDE/3-tech tweener. I could see them moving Lyles back to DE, the depth at TE has improved from when they first moved him, think they need more at DE. Athletic but raw player.
DT: They have pretty good depth at NT, and you could see one move to 3-tech. Kittredge and Knox can both play but are undersized, which won't help young LBs. I still think LT is another year away from really contributing a lot, and haven't been impressed with Scarpinato (gave up the punt block last night).
LB: You don't replace Bullough, you just don't. Ed Davis seems pretty good, but what he's been asked to do as a situation player compared to as a starter will be much different. Reschke will be a RS FR and has some potential, but will likely have growing pains. Taiwan Jones is a good player. Need someone to step up at MIKE, and I see this as the biggest reason their defense takes a fairly decent step back.
CB: Waynes probably slides over to Dennard's boundary CB position, but you don't replace Dennard. While Waynes has athletic potential, he still has a lot of room to grow, particularly with his body technique. They'll have to involve their safeties a bit more to help him. The other side will be young, likely Ezra Robinson. He's alright, but not yet great. Dantonio knows how to coach DBs though, so they should still be solid there.
S: Safety is where they actually probably have the most potential as far as raw talent, but they will be raw if Drummond leaves. Williamson, Cox, and Hicks all have athletic ability, but have also been exposed a bit when they've played. With having to likely help the CBs a bit more, and the LBs taking a step back, this puts them in a difficult position in their cover 4 scheme.
I think their offense will be a slightly improved version of this years squad, but not a whole lot. I think they pretty much are becoming what they are, an above average group.
Their defense should step back to not-Godly, but will still be a top-25 group in my opinion. They do have a bit more depth issues next year in the case of injuries, but it's more depth issues in the sense that the backups are young and quite inexperienced.
Fowler will most likely apply for a 6th year
I'd prefer to focus on us getting better, and doing what MSU did this year -- marked improvement over the course of the season, strong player development, non-knucklehead coaching, etc. Unless Dantonio falls over and/or Narduzzi gets his shot as a HC, Sparty is going to be a tough out for the foreseeable future. The folks who are convinced that they just "can't keep it up" with the recruits they are bringing in fail to consider that Sparty's recruitng hasn't been much worse lately than in years past. And yet, 10+ win seasons a lot more frequently than we've seen. They do a good job with the talent they get. Like it or not, they are the measuring stick we need to meet before we are able to return to a better place in the B10.
9-3. The 2014 schedule stacks up pretty favorably for them:
at Penn State
I could easily see them dropping games to Oregon and Penn State since both are away. Let's call Michigan and Ohio State "toss ups", although both are home games for Sparty. All of the rest are entirely winnable (though Indiana's fast-paced offense will test the MSU D). Without Notre Dame on the schedule, they could be a minimum of 6-1 through the first 7 games. They should beat Rutgers and Maryland easily. That means they only need to go 1-2 against U-M, OSU and Penn State. Doable.
No Iowa, Wisky, and Minnie. Tough games at home besides Oregon.
We will have the hard slate next year so difficult to see our record topping theirs. Both 9-3?
One detail that I suppose might be interesting about that schedule is this - if you used the current Sagarin numbers, the average rating for those teams is 68.24, which would sandwich it between Toledo and Maryland. In other words, if you were to play that schedule right now, playing teams that average 71st in the ratings isn't a bad way to go about a season if you want a decent record. Having said that, of course, these numbers aren't terribly telling because of the lack of 2014 data basically. If I wagered a guess - a shot in the dark, as it would be right now - 9-3 is probably a good "way too early" guess.
They will take a step back and be 8-4/9-3 with all that they're losing. Now I fully expect to be attacked by the Sparty lovers who claim that there's an unspoken rule about this and I should just concede that they go 14-0 every year.
They'll beat us....
This is all I really care about regarding Staee. What the result is against them. As of now, I'll peg it as a loss.
With all those players gone? This was their apex. Its downhill now for them. Believe it
I felt the same after last season. They lost what little they had on O and assumed this year would be almost exactly like last. But they have THE BEST coaching staff in the conference, bar none. They will coach up their kids and whilst the transition won't be seamless, they aren't going away. They'll be good.
Agree. We don't have hundreds of threads on here when they, Ohio, or ND do something bad. We don't need hundreds of threads on them when they do something good. I only cheer for one Michigan team and that one resides in Ann Arbor.
Still the best team in Michigan. :(
We'll see what happens when Meyer and Hoke's guys are seniors and RS seniors. Both guys are bringing in some pretty highly regarded guys. I don't think State can bring in and develop someone better than Drake Harris or George Campbell.
They will beat Michigan again.
Watched the game last night with several MSU friends. Watched a few of their games, think I have a decent handle on their roster.
Although they lose 4 or 5 starters on defense, they rotate heavily and have a lot of depth. Ed Davis is a sophomore backup LB who was a monster against us and OSU, he replaces Allen. They actually did not start Reynolds or Hoover last night, they started 3 sophomores and a junior on the D line, although Reynolds and Hoover played often. That other DB, Trae Waynes, is almost as good as Dennard is. Williamson and Brummond are both good safeties as is Cox who plays in their nickle. Their D line will be better, secondary will not be quite as good, but should still be very good. LBs is their question on defense, who will replace Bullough?
Offensively? They return everyone except for 3 O linemen. Normally losing 3 O linemen is rough, as we painfully know, but tMSU rotated their O linemen all game, they play 8 O linemen extensively. It sickened me last night to see that the last drive of the game they were rolling with 3 backups on the O line with 2 starters. Apparently, they did this every game and are comfortable with all 8 "starters". Apparently even Fowler is coming back for a 6th year, wtf? They could have a much better offense next year.
They return all of their specialists. They have a favorable B1G schedule playing us, OSU, and Nebraska in East Lansing. They play Oregon on the road in pre B1G play.
I see a floor of 8 wins. Ceiling? Who knows, I would have never thought they'd win 12 games this year. I'd guess MSU and us will vie for the title in the East.
MSU is not going away. They have the program in place now to keep churning out quality players to replace what they lose. I think we'll improve a lot more than they will though and we can beat them next season, but it's at best a tossup game for us. We are going to have to deal with the Spartans for years and they are for real. With Ohio, MSU, and a resurgent Penn State, the East Divsion is going to be tough sledding from here on out.
Their losses are a bit more than that - they actually have six senior starters on D and four on offense, and a couple of juniors might consider leaving, in addition to perhaps Narduzzi.
One thing about MSU this year was that once they got the QB position sorted out, they didn't have any really glaring positional deficiencies. Even if you're good at say, nine or ten positions on one side of the ball, that one or two guys can do you in. That was not a problem for them this year. They also were remarkably injury-free. Whether that continues into 2014 is anyone's guess.
Last 4 years:
11-3, 11-2, 7-6 and 12-1
7-6, 11-2, 8-5, and 7-5
at this point, the 2 programs have completely switched places. they are the team winning the B10 and going to the Rose Bowl, M is playing in the toilet bowl. They win 10-11 games most years, M manages it as often as a leap year. M has inexplicable win vs ND, they lose to ND.
there is absolutely no reason to believe that next year Team A who finished 8-0, 12-1 will be worse than Team B who is 3-5, 7-6. Especially considering team A is at home next year.
I remember the days when M would finish 5-3 in conf, and everyone freaked the fuck out. now, we're hoping for M to have a year (2015?) where EVERYTHING falls just perfectly right for us to have a chance to win the division- schedule easy, everyone is a SR, 5th year with out any coaching transition.
Kirk Cousins. BJ Cunningham. Keshawn Martin. Jerel Worthy. Will Gholston. Le'Veon Bell. Yeah, Dennard, Bullough, Allen, Lewis, these losses will hurt. But every year these "devastating" graduation losses supposedly presage State's return to "normalcy", every year it was just one great class that hit its peak but now they're gone and Sparty sucks again. Sorry, guys, but I think Dantonio, while not on Saban's level of recruiting talent, has at the very least built the kind of depth where there will almost always be fifth-year seniors to plug in, or younger players who were hand-picked for Dantonio's system. I don't think this decline is coming soon. If Michigan is to reassert dominance, it's going to be via rising to their level, not waiting for it to drop. Hoke has this year to prove he is the guy to do that, and if he fails, I think its time to look elsewhere. It sucks, but this is reality now, I believe.
Didn't they lose 6 games after they lost a bunch of guys last year? Also, it has been mostly the middle of that defense that has made them so strong, which now graduates. Personally I expect them to do the same next year...show the loss of a bunch of guys. We'll see if they can overcome a .500-type season (again) now that Hoke has had a full recruiting cycle behind him. I see the UM/MSU world slowly returning to normalcy in the next 3 seasons as Hoke's recruits get older, Narduzzi leaves, and MSU graduates this class.
They were a couple PI calls versus ND away from playing for the National Title this year. They won 9 B1G games all by at least 10 points, that's never been done in the history of the conference. MSU was very very good this year, even if they do come back to the pack a little, they'll still be right in the middle of the title race for the conference.
MSU will still be very good. 39% of that roster is upperclassmen, and about 60% of that roster is comprised of guys who have been in the program for at least 3 years. The love to redshirt almost every player that comes in their program, and it pays off. MSU will probably not be as good next year, but they will still be very good.
They may take a step back in 2015, but that depends on how Michigan and the rest of the Big Ten develop their 2012 and 2013 recruiting classes.
Ya the past 2-3 years we keep thinking their graduating seniors will make a big difference. Hasn't happened so much. I'm going I go ahead and guess they will still be very good
At this point I'd say MSU is going to be decent to good for the foreseeable future because at this point there can be very little doubt Dantonio is one of the top 3 coaches in the BiG. They won't win the BIG, but they will likely beat us again even with Narduzzi's departure. I'll put them in the 8-9 win range, which will be slightly better than the 7-8 win range I expect for us.
Football isn't magic... and I don't think Dantonio is any special genius. Maybe what they do is prepare obsessively for each opponent. I'm betting they watched tapes from our game with OSU every waking minute. Whatever MSU is doing, we have the opportunity to do better.
They will be good as long as they play with a chip on their shoulder..Coaches keep feeding all kinds of crap to these players so they can play te victim game like they alway do..so yeah who cares about msu, they are obsesse with beating us and will do whatever it takes to do so
If you look at Dantonio's early records, they're worse than what Hoke's put together in his first three years. I like Hoke, not necessarily saying he's the answer, but keep everything in context. People can say that Michigan, recruiting wise, is a step up from Michigan State so Dantonio did more than Hoke in his first three years, but Dantonio didn't have to reinvent the culture like Hoke did from the spread and tire fire of Oline recruiting like RR left Hoke. I guess what I'm saying is Hoke has a history of success, lets give his recruits and coaches more than 3 years to develop the kids he's bringing in. If you put any stock in the recruiting services, he can obviously recruit. Starting next year we'll be able to see if him and his staff can develop their talent. Then we can begin to pass judgment. I really think we should give him 4 - 5 years. Few programs succeed with constant coaching changes and I don't want to see Michigan become a program that has constant change.
Yes Dantonio did change the football culture at msu, they were really bad for so long that he had to build it from the bottom..the difference was that msu fans didnt know what it felt like to be successfull so they were patient with him.. We arent..
that's a good point, I guess my point was MSU was always atleast more of a prostyle, no matter how lousy, compared to RR to Hoke, where you're changing an entire identity. I suppose when you're at the bottom like MSU with no expectations years ago, the only way is up, where we get greedy, understandably so, as a MIchigan fanbase used to historically winning. Damn expectations.
They'll be competent on offense and pretty good on defense. Losing the players they have this year will be significant, and all the player development of 3* players doesn't replace a decent number of NFL players in a single year. I think their offense will be better next year with Cook, and maybe that will make up for a step back on defense. I figure they'll win 8-10 games next year as well. Losing Narduzzi will probably hurt a bit too, but Dantonio knows how to coach and will keep them humming along. They are a good team, and they'll be a tough out for years to come.
That said, I do think this little stretch will be the apex for this team, just because of a bunch of factors that were out of their control. OSU, PSU, andUM have been going through various struggles the past couple of seasons to various degrees, and that has helped MSU snag players and maintain stability while other squads have been unsettled. But PSU should get over the hump in 2-3 years, UM seems largely back on track in terms of recruiting and (I suspect) player development, and OSU probably won't go undefeated for another 20+ games but is obviously a class leader in the conference. This MSU team reminds me a bit of those Iowa teams from years past; a couple of seasons they look dominant and then they hit a bit of a rough patch with player development and recruiting and they struggle. MSU will be a really good team in this conference as long as Dantonio sticks around, but I don't think the rest of the conference is going to let them get too far away.
The way its looking MSU may snag one of our previous "locked" recruits. Parker Westphal, that kid can flat a*# play!
Also Darius Slade.. Kids got some size to him
7-5, 8-4, or 6-6. I think they will have a falloff like they usually do after a 10 win season!