Air Force vs Michigan State: 5 Spartans who will be X-factors

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Sep 12, 2015; East Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans wide receiver Aaron Burbridge (16) makes a catch against Oregon Ducks defensive back Arrion Springs (1) during the 1st half of a game at Spartan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

1. Aaron Burbridge, WR

Tony Lippett and Keith Mumphery have gone on to bigger and better things in the NFL, leaving unproven seniors such as DeAnthony Arnett, Macgarrett Kings and Aaron Burbridge to fill their place.

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The one receiver who has stood out above all the rest has been Burbridge as his talent is finally showing through after a couple of rough years in East Lansing. After a strong freshman season, Burbridge really struggled to take off as a starter in his sophomore and junior seasons, taking a bit of a step back.

Now, he’s on pace to have a career year, catching 12 passes for 218 yards and a touchdown. His current pace happens to be torrid as he could finish the season with 78 receptions for 1,417 yards and seven touchdowns.

As a senior, fellow receivers and younger players will be looking up to him and watching how he plays the game and acquires success. He’s currently the second-leading receiver in the entire Big Ten and his teammates are taking notice.

Burbridge has become Cook’s new favorite target and he’s also the most reliable weapon in the pass game that the Spartans have.

If Michigan State wants to succeed against Air Force, it’ll need to take advantage of the poor pass defense of the Falcons, starting with Burbridge.

Next: Air Force vs Michigan State: 5 bold predictions