Michigan State football fans are getting cautiously excited about the upcoming season and following a 5-7 campaign, expectations have been tempered quite a bit.
The Spartans missed out on a bowl game thanks to a crushing loss to Indiana at home and an overall disappointing season but Mel Tucker and Co. seemed to have made the necessary changes to get Michigan State back to the postseason.
But these three position battles need answers before the season begins if that’s going to happen.
3. Defensive line
It was tough to pick between defensive tackle and defensive end, so I’m picking both here.
There is a lot of uncertainty along the defensive line. No, I’m not talking about the talent as there is no shortage of that along the defensive line, but the uncertainty is more so about who might start. There are a lot of conflicting predictions between Phile Steele, Athlon Sports, and other preview magazines and prominent sites.
At the end spots, a lot of predictions are that Avery Dunn is going to start along with Tunmise Adeleye. I agree with the latter, but I think that Khris Bogle is going to start. That’s not a knock on Dunn, but Bogle is just a veteran with a high ceiling. And there’s also Ken Talley, Zion Young, Andrew Depaepe, and Bai Jobe.
As for the tackles, Simeon Barrow is the sure starter and I could see Derrick Harmon at the other spot but Alex VanSumeren, Dre Butler, Jarrett Jackson, Jalen Sami, and Maverick Hansen will push for that starting job.
The defensive line is going to see plenty of battles.