The clock finally struck midnight on Western Michigan’s Cinderella story vs Michigan State. A game that started on Friday and ended well into Saturday felt like an eternity for spartan fans, but eventually ended with a spartan win. Survive and move on isn’t a bad strategy for any football team, just ask Notre Dame’s coach Brian Kelly. On their way to playing for a national title Notre Dame won 5 games by 7 points or less, 2 in overtime.
After the win the Spartans know what they need to work on, offensive production. The 2 quarterback system is tough to maneuver. Even though Maxwell went 11 for 21 I thought he looked like the should be starter and all time quarterback. His passes looked sharp, and his throwing velocity even drew a Brett Farve comparison. As soon as the wide receiver core learns what stick-em is his stats should improve. An offensive bright spot was the running game. Langford got off to a slow start, but who can blame him. Nerves were probably high for his first game not behind Bell. As the game went on he started to show his athleticism and ability to make big plays, finishing with 20 carries for 94 yards with 1 TD and 1 fumble. Hill shocked many fans, reminding me of Ray Rice with his 5’8” frame. He finished runs strong and was great in pass protection. I will be shocked if he isn’t used situationally throughout the season.
The defense was fantastic. Scoring more points than the offense, including extra points, is not something to rely on. Forcing 11 punts, 3 interceptions, 1 fumble, and 5 sacks for a loss of 36 yards showed the rest of the Big Ten why MSU is predicted to be one of the top defenses in the conference.