Saturday, September 29, 2012
MSU season on the brink of disaster
In that time, the expectations for this season went from being a dark horse to win the national championship to being an outsider in the Big Ten race.
The Spartans suffered their second loss in three weeks, falling 17-16 to
at home on
It was another ugly showing for Michigan State, and another game where the Spartans had an opportunity to win, but failed to make the plays it needed to to get the job done.
Unlike recent seasons,
has failed to show a lot of composure and come-from-behind ability in the
fourth quarter. Michigan State
The blame for Saturday’s loss goes on the whole team.
The defense gave up too many big plays and couldn’t get the stops it needed to against a one-man offense.
The MSU offense continued to have struggles moving the ball. When the Spartans did put a drive together, it settled for field goals instead of getting touchdowns.
On special teams, another missed field goal from Dan Conroy could have made the difference between a win and a loss.
The ultimate disappointment for Spartan fans had to come on the final offensive play for the Buckeyes. Facing a 3rd and 4,
was able to run for a first down right up the middle of the Spartan defense. An
elite, or even very good defense makes that stop. Ohio State
When it comes to the offense, the same issues keep coming up. Receivers dropped passes again. Andrew Maxwell missed open receivers again. The offensive line failed to open up running lanes again.
was held to just 49 yards on 17 carries. In past weeks, when Bell has rushed for big yards, it seemed as
if he had to do a lot of the work himself. In both losses, he hasn’t been very
visible in the game and that is because the line is losing the battle up front.
Now add to that another big injury, with center Travis Jackson out for the rest
of the year due to multiple leg injuries in Saturday’s game. The MSU line has
been struggling when healthy, one can only assume those struggles continue with
key pieces missing.
The only saving grace for the Spartans right now is that this was not a Legends Division game. MSU still controls its own destiny to get to the Big Ten Championship Game. However, based on what we have seen, can we really expect that to happen?
The Spartans head to
next week and then return home to host Iowa.
Those have to be wins.
Then, a rough three-week stretch awaits that will determine if this season is a complete failure. Those games are at
at Wisconsin, and then home against Nebraska.