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

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Sep 4, 2015; Kalamazoo, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans place kicker Michael Geiger (4) kicks a field goal out of the hold of wide receiver Matt Macksood (86) during the 2nd half of a game at Waldo Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Special Teams

Often the difference in games under Mark Dantonio has been the superb special teams play. Consistent kicking games and spectacular trick plays have been a staple for the Spartans the last eight years.

What went well: New punter

The word coming out of spring ball was that new punter Jake Hartbarger had a ton of leg talent, but was not consistent. Against Western, Hartbarger was outstanding. He boomed a couple of punts and killed one inside the 10 yard line. It was a great start for the talented Hartbarger.

What didn’t: Kickoff coverage

There couldn’t be a more obvious deficiency in this game against Western. Allowing a 100 yard return for a touchdown and nearly two 100 yard returns for touchdown will not do. I fully expect this to get corrected by next week.

In the aggregate more went well than didn’t for MSU against Western resulting in a fairly comforable win. A similar effort against Oregon will not end in a similar result, though.

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