My anger is only beginning to subside. Every time I think I am ready to move on, I get another text from some Sparty for the first time in a year, who most assuredly can't even name three of MSU's opponents so far this year, lighting up my phone. Ugh...
I hate to admit it, but we were outcoached on Saturday. The 4th down play was only a small part of it. I don't mind the call, really - it was somewhat reminiscent of the Desmond catch against ND, only with monumentally opposite results. But that's part of the game - you make a risky call and when it works out you're a genius and when it doesn't you're an idiot. That's OK with me.
This game was about the MSU blitz and/or pressure and our inability to do any thing about it.
Conventional wisdom says that with a dilithium quarterback, blitzing is a risky endeavor. You will hit him a few times, but he'll get loose a few times and go for uberyards. That never happened this week, despite Dantonio's obvious decision to blitz and blitz and blitz. And blitz. We did an OK job at times picking it up, but they got through a LOT. And when they did, Denard.... froze. Stayed in there and did his best Ryan Mallet imitation, except without the 6' - 6" frame or flamethrower arm.
Two ways to counter this "strategy" would have been to: (1) have hot routes or (2) turn the man loose, roll him out, sprint him out, and let his legs, in all their glory, work their magic. We did neither, and we didn't seem to do much of anything in response.
And the punt in the 4th quarter in MSU territory. In the name of all that is holy, go for it. m How can you make the ballsy 4th down play call and then punt it from their side of the field in the 4th quarter when you're behind? Doesn't make any sense to me.
And - Yes Ghoul-ston is a thug. And yes, the entire MSU team has a nasty, dirty, thugness about it that should make their alumni repulsed. But it's a man's game for a reason. We didn't respond, and I do NOT mean with similar thugness but some old fashioned toughness, nastiness, within the rules of the game would have been welcome. I never expected Richrod's teams to have that edge, but I hoped Brady's would.