Michigan State Football: 25 best players of the Mark Dantonio era

EAST LANSING, MI - OCTOBER 04: Trae Waynes /
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Joe Bachie, Michigan State Spartans
SAN DIEGO, CA – DECEMBER 28: Joe Bachie #35 of the Michigan State Spartans motions a first down after Michigan State Spartans recover a fumble by the Washington State Cougars during the second half of the SDCCU Holiday Bowl at SDCCU Stadium on December 28, 2017 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
  • Voted team MVP (2017)
  • Second-Team All-Big Ten (2017)
  • Third-Team preseason All-American by Athlon Sports (2018)

Is this ranking a little premature? Possibly, but I feel strong enough about Joe Bachie and his future with Michigan State football to rank him as the No. 21 player in the Mark Dantonio era.

Bachie is already one of the top-five linebackers Dantonio has ever had, and that’s good enough to land him on this list. He’s done what not many have been able to do under the 11-year head coach, and that’s record 100 tackles in a single season.

In 15 career games, he has 111 total tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks with three interceptions, two pass deflections, two fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles. To put it bluntly, this kid is a monster on the defensive side of the ball.

Luckily for the Spartans, Bachie still has two years of eligibility left in the green and white. If the freshman redshirt rule was in place a couple of years ago, he would have been able to redshirt in 2016 while still playing two games.

There’s a good chance he could become the No. 1 linebacker in the Dantonio era before it’s all said and done.