Michigan State vs Western Michigan: 5 players who must step up

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Oct 25, 2014; East Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans safety RJ Williamson (26) celebrates scoring a pick 6 with safety Mark Meyers (29) during the 2nd half of a game at Spartan Stadium. MSU won 35-11. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

The Michigan State vs Western Michigan game on Friday night promises to be a better contest than people really let on. The Spartans will be traveling to Waldo Stadium to take on the Broncos for a prime time matchup between in-state foes.

Related: MSU Football: Game by game predictions for 2015

Mark Dantonio is one of the best coaches in college football while Western’s P.J. Fleck is considered one of the up-and-coming coaches in the country as he led the Broncos to an 8-5 season and a bowl appearance last year.

By no means is Western Michigan a pushover and the Spartans will need to be on their game in order to pull out a road victory to start the year.

With returning players such as Corey Davis, Zachary Terrell and Jarvion Franklin, the Broncos have the talent to compete with the loaded Spartans. Michigan State’s defense will surely be tested against a proven offense coming off an eight-win season.

Although it may not necessarily seem like it, the young Michigan State secondary will get a solid test from the Broncos. Terrell finished with about 3,500 yards and 26 touchdowns last year while Davis caught over 80 passes for over 1,500 yards.

It will be interesting to see how Vayante Copeland and Demetrious Cox fare at the cornerback positions and who will have to go up against the talented Davis.

There will be plenty of things to watch for in tonight’s game as well as a handful of Spartans who many are hoping to catch a glimpse of. Which players had a great fall camp and will need to lead a solid 2015 season to live up the hype?

Let’s take a look at five players who will need to step up tonight in order for the Spartans to come out victorious and start the season strongly.

Next: 5. Lawrence Thomas