Tuesday, August 31, 2010

2008 or 2009? Which version of the Spartans will emerge in 2010?

While Michigan State head football coach Mark Dantonio's job isn't on the line, like it is for his counterpart in Ann Arbor, Rich Rodriguez, this is nonetheless a fork-in-the-road season for him and the Spartans.
Which team was more indicative of the Spartans under Dantonio? Last year's 6-7 edition that was marred by off-the-field issues? Or the 2008 version that went 9-4 and seemed on the verge of breaking through and becoming a perennial Top 25 team.
The Spartans play old-school football. They set up the pass with the run. Their defense is only as effective as their offense at maintaining time of possession. It will make running the ball a priority this season. State has a veteran offensive line, led by Milford's Joel Foreman. The key will be that offensive line, and the development backs Larry Caper, Edwin Baker and LeVeon Bell, the latter of a true freshman, whose size (6-2, 230 pounds) and power fits MSU's scheme best among its current runners.
Kirk Cousins is an experienced quarterback, and the Spartans have a lot of talented receivers. Keshawn Martin is a true game breaker. But the Spartans won't win if they are forced to pass. Period. Just won't happen.

Random Thoughts

- What will Will Rhymes' batting average be at the end of the season? I predict .265. What will Brennan Boesch's be? I predict .255.

- I am not a betting man, and don't even know what the over-and-under is for the Lions' season opener at Chicago, but I'll go with the over, sight unseen. The Lions will score their share of points, but Mike Martz and Jay Cutler will be licking chops against that defense.

- I have a feeling Manny Ramirez will help the White Sox down the stretch. Last time Ramirez changed teams in 2008, he just took off. But he isn't nearly as powerful as he used to be, although he should be helped by the power-hitter friendly park in Chicago.



Blogger Core Contrarian said...

Last time Manny changed teams in 2008 and went wild with the Dodgers, he was trying to have a baby.

I don't know if that still applies now.

Say no to (fertility) drugs!

3:42 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Core Contraian,
Couldn't have said it better myself. LOL.

11:46 PM 

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