Michigan State Football: What worked and didn’t work against Western

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Sep 4, 2015; Kalamazoo, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans running back Madre London (28) runs the ball against the Western Michigan Broncos prior to a game at Waldo Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Offensive Line

The offensive line is predicted to be one of the Spartans’ best units. Look for MSU’s offensive line to overpower most of the teams they play given there are no significant injuries.

What went well: Protecting the QB

For most of the game Connor Cook was kept clean by MSU’s heralded offensive line.

Must Read: MSU Football: Game by game predictions for 2015

The official stats showed no sacks given up, though Connor did get sacked once leading to a fumble — fortunately for MSU that call was called back by a WMU holding penalty. Cook had time to throw all night with a nice pocket to step into for all but a handful attempts.

What didn’t: Opening the big hole

While the overall play of the O-line was good, we expected a few more gaping holes for the running backs to run through for that home run ball. The running backs averaged 5.4 yards per rush which is a nice average for the O-line, but represents a lot of important but limited runs.

With an overmatched opponent like Western the offensive line should have blown open some major running lanes. To be fair, a big run by Madre London was called back by a completely inconsequential alignment penalty by Macgarrett Kings.

Next: Defensive line