Oct 17, 2015; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans quarterback Connor Cook (18) celebrates a win over the Michigan Wolverines during the second half of a game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports
Who are the top 50 players in Michigan State Football history?
Going down the list of the top Michigan State football players of all time, one thing has been very clear: there has been no shortage of talent throughout the program’s history — even during the down periods, such as John L.’s reign.
Stretching back to the era of national titles for Michigan State in the 1950s and 1960s, the Spartans have put some solid talent into the NFL and have seen it flourish at the next level.
The same goes for Michigan State football today. Over the past decade, Michigan State has been thriving in the NFL, sending guys like Le’Veon Bell, Jeremy Langford, Kirk Cousins, Brian Hoyer, Darqueze Dennard and Trae Waynes to the league with the opportunity to start at each of their respective positions over the next year-plus.
Let’s take a look at the top 50 players in school history, as voted on by our writers, and let us know who we missed or who should be higher/lower in the comment section below.
50. Chris Baker
Chris Baker might just be the best tight end in Michigan State history. In fact, Baker has the best stats of any player at the position at MSU.
Playing from 1998-2001, Baker had a chance to play for two coaches during his time in East Lansing: Nick Saban and Bobby Williams. Despite switching coaches, and offensive playbooks, from the 1999 to 2000 seasons, he still put up some big-time numbers for a tight end in his final two years with the program.
During his freshman and sophomore seasons, Baker had 305 and 391 receiving yards, respectively, with seven touchdown receptions. As a junior, his numbers spiked as he caught 33 passes for 461 yards and two touchdowns. Baker’s senior year was his best, catching 40 passes for 548 yards and four scores.
Over his four-year career, Baker ranks ninth all-time in receptions (133), 19th in receiving yards (1,705) and 13th in touchdown catches (13). Not many tight ends will ever approach those numbers at MSU, but Josiah Price is close — and has even surpassed Baker in touchdowns (16).
Next: 49. Jerel Worthy