Michigan State Football: The Spartans aren’t going anywhere


More from Spartans Football

As if the Michigan State football program needed any more bulletin board material, a recent Bleacher Report article by Ben Axelrod claimed the Spartans’ national title window is closing. I’m here to tell you why that couldn’t be any further from the truth.

We hear it every single offseason, this one more than most, that Michigan State is on the decline. The players leaving vastly out-rank the players returning in terms of talent. With three possible first-round picks on the team for the 2015 season, it’s this year or never for the Spartans to win it all, right?

Well, according to everyone outside of East Lansing, that is the perceptions. However, it’s an opinion with absolutely no backing outside of Ohio State is really, really good and Michigan just hired Jim Harbaugh.

For the past five years, every time Michigan State loses a starting quarterback and some top defensive players, it has been considered to be “declining” or having a decreased stock.

For example, when Kirk Cousins, Edwin Baker and B.J. Cunningham all left before the 2012 season, the Spartans were a team many people picked to finish near the middle of the conference and they wouldn’t be back for a long, long time. Well, those people who picked them to finish in the middle were right, except for the fact that they probably picked the Spartans to finish even worse in 2013.

Jan 1, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Michigan State Spartans quarterback Connor Cook (18) celebrates after the 100th Rose Bowl against the Stanford Cardinal. Michigan State defeated Stanford 24-20. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State’s strongest year under Dantonio happened in 2013 when the team shuffled through three different quarterbacks and had a new starting running back after the loss of Le’Veon Bell the previous year. The Spartans settled on Connor Cook, Jeremy Langford became an all-conference type back and Michigan State won the Big Ten title game as well as the Rose Bowl, finishing 13-1.

Sure, everyone thinks Michigan State will be a top-10 team all season long in 2015, but it’s the 2016 season that many think will begin the downfall of Michigan State’s elite run.

Falser words have never been muttered.

With Cook leaving as well as DeAnthony Arnett, Aaron Burbridge, Shilique Calhoun, Jack Conklin and Lawrence Thomas, there are a wealth of backups like Damion Terry and Tyler O’Connor who will step up at QB. Don’t forget Brian Lewerke, an incoming freshman for 2015, and Messiah deWeaver, an incoming freshman in 2016.

The defense never rebuilds, but always reloads as the 2015 recruiting class is very defensively heavy and the Spartan backfield is getting a highly-touted recruit in LJ Scott as well as two guys competing for the starting job this spring — Madre London and Gerald Holmes.

Tight end is set as Josiah Price leads the way with Jamal Lyles and the offensive line will be young in 2015 outside of Conklin. Brian Allen is the future and it’s only getting stronger from there.

Nearly the entire secondary will be returning for 2016 as well as some solid incoming recruits for 2015. The linebackers will be losing just Ed Davis, but producing top young guns like Shane Jones and Jon Reschke.

Live Feed

Maryland vs. Michigan State Prediction, Odds, Trends and Key Players for College Football Week 4
Maryland vs. Michigan State Prediction, Odds, Trends and Key Players for College Football Week 4 /


  • Biggest winners and losers from College Football Week 3Saturday Blitz
  • What channel is Washington playing on today, Sept. 16?FanSided
  • College Football Predictions: Picks for Top games of Week 3Saturday Blitz
  • Washington vs. Michigan State Prediction, Odds, Trends and Key Players for College Football Week 3Betsided
  • Big Ten football: 2023 Week 2 power rankingsSaturday Blitz
  • Special teams are always a treat as MSU might bring in the best kicker in the nation to replace Michael Geiger when he’s done in two years and Jake Hartbarger will fill in nicely for Mike Sadler at punter for the next few years.

    Anyone who thinks a team that has gone from recruiting top-50 class to now top-25 classes in on the decline with Mark Dantonio at the helm must be sipping the maize and blue, scarlet and gray Kool-Aid.

    Michigan State was winning Big Ten titles and 10-plus games with two and three-stars, imagine what they’re going to do with four and five-stars in the coming years.

    Michigan State on the decline? Please.

    More from Spartans Football