With Michigan State football having the week off, I too took some time to not think about this team. The Iowa game left me so disheartened and broken, that checking out for a week was the best thing for not only my mental health, but the things I did want to say on Spartan Avenue and social media would have benefitted no one.
So here we are.
Game week with a trip to New Jersey on Saturday. Tied for last place in the Big Ten East and one of three teams without a conference win. By the end of the year, we’ll have a brand new staff and a decent amount of roster turnover whether it’s graduation or the transfer portal so it’s already tough to try to watch the young guys for the future because there’s no guarantee that they will be here come spring.
But there are still seven games left (whether we like it or not) and they are still our team this year, next year and forever. So let’s take a look at what statistics I would like to see to have a successful second half to the season.
1. More passing touchdowns than interceptions
Reports came out last week that the coaching staff will hand the reigns over to Katin Houser against Rutgers.
I love this move, as Noah Kim has shown that he can move the ball (after starting extremely slow) against Group of Five and Division 2 opponents. Against Power Five schools, he has one touchdown pass against six interceptions with a high quarterback rating of 43.8 (out of 100). By all means, he’s a great human and great leader for this team and has arm talent, but Kim’s decision making, or lack thereof, has hindered this team’s ability to win.
It kills me to say that but his refusal to throw downfield against Iowa resulted in MSU running exactly one play in Hawkeye territory and it was a Kim interception at the Iowa 49. On a list of things wrong with the offense, Kim is certainly not at the top, but a change is clearly needed.
Whether it’s Houser or Sam Leavitt that is the Spartan quarterback of the future, they need to take care of the football for this team to have any success.
The talent is there, but unfortunately we need to rely on the offensive coaching staff to help a young quarterback, which probably won’t happen because I begged them to get Kim in a rhythm early with short, easy throws but instead it was deep bombs, sideline throws, and screens where the offensive linemen can’t get out of their own way and the play is blown up by the defense before it can even develop.
But if they took the bye week to reflect and retool, Houser or Leavitt can
survive in this offense, end the year with more touchdowns than interceptions, and this team can stop it from completely unraveling.