I have had time to process my rash Week 1 reactions, so here is a stock watch for Michigan State football after Western Michigan for the 2022 season.
Last Friday, Michigan State football opened its season under the lights against Western Michigan. The Spartans ultimately prevailed, 35-13, but that does not tell the whole story. In the second and fourth quarters, the Spartans looked every bit of the defending Peach Bowl champs that they are.
In the first and third quarters, however, you would be hard-pressed to find a more inconsistent Big Ten team besides Iowa or Scott Frost’s Cornhuskers with an 11-point lead.
After re-watching the game a few times to make sure of my observations from watching the game in person, I would like to put some stock into players heading into week two of the season.
Stock up: Jacoby Windmon
I believe this is self-explanatory. The UNLV transfer had no issues acclimating to Big Ten play, being officially credited with four sacks, including a forced fumble that gave the Spartans the ball back with Western inside the MSU 15.
Payton Thorne also admitted that the ex-linebacker had caused the Spartans some issues in training camp, and I expect the senior to be a dominating force.
Michigan State lost a lot of pass rush this offseason, with Jacub Panasiuk, Drew Beesley, and Drew Jordan all graduating, and it is clear that the Spartans have reloaded at that position. With the addition of Ken Talley on Wednesday, the Big Ten should be put on notice.
The Spartans had seven sacks Friday, with the offseason transfers accounting for six of them (Aaron Brule and Khris Bogle each had one). The seventh sack came from another transfer, from last year’s corner transfer Chester Kimbrough. Mel Tucker is the transfer portal guru, and the Spartan defense should be revamped soon. Oh, and they also just added Talley to the list of pass rushers.
Awards watch. Windmon has already gotten the accolades from PFF and the Big Ten, and for good reason. If he continues to play at this level, the nation better watch out.