Michigan State vs Oregon: 5 players to watch

5 of 6

Sep 4, 2015; Kalamazoo, MI, USA; Western Michigan Broncos wide receiver Daniel Braverman (8) breaks tackle of Michigan State Spartans safety Montae Nicholson (9) during the 1st half of a game at Waldo Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

The Michigan State secondary was under fire following week one’s victory over Western Michigan for allowing over 350 passing yards to Zach Terrell while Corey Davis ran basically any route he wanted in the second half.

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

However, there were some bright spots in the defensive backfield in sophomore safety Montae Nicholson, freshman corner Vayante Copeland and junior corner Demetrious Cox. All three of those guys played relatively well in their first starts in the secondary, but the group as a whole got a bad rap.

Nicholson is the true stud on this side of the ball and that might be based on his extremely high ceiling and the hype surrounding him. As a highly-rated four-star safety out of high school, the Pennsylvania-native came to MSU with high expectations of his own.

Luckily for Coach D, he doesn’t have to tell Nicholson about the rare opportunity he has been given, as he already knows and is grateful.

Expect the sophomore safety to really prove that he’s a natural-born leader and the defense will feed off his energy as he will build on a week one seven-tackle, one-interception performance in which he got the defense off to a hot start.

Next: 1. Connor Cook