Each team has explosive athletes offensively, and we've already seen that. Most people talk about MSU wide receiver Tony Lippett, and with good reason, but Keith Mumphety has made a lot of big plays down through the years, including two really big ones on the Spartans' first scoring drive tonight. The throw by Connor Cook on Mumphery's 44-yard reception was superior, though. It's the type of thing that could make him a first-round draft pick. Conversely, Ohio State sends waves of athletes at you. Ezekiel Elliot is the Buckeyes' leading rusher, and his capabilities when given the ball in space are obvious.
- State's best chance to win this game is the same as a defensive-oriented team in basketball. They need to control the tempo of play. That means having sustain drives and wearing out Ohio State. The Buckeyes can match MSU athletically, but don't play with the same degree of physicality.- There is a surprising number of people at this game wearing scarlet rather than green. It's stunning, really. Actually, the most I've seen for an opposing team at Spartan Stadium.
- One thing that really sticks out about J.T. Barrett is his ability to run a quarterback draw. He is a 225-pound kid, and has knack for not only picking his way through defenses, but he is physical runner, who shrugs off arm tackles while still retaining his speed running downhill. He is also a better passer than Braxton Miller. He has a quicker release and snaps of his shorter timing throws much more decisively and on target than Miller.
My column. A frank look at what the second half of the season means for Stafford, Suh and even Megatron: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20141108/pat-caputo-stafford-suh-megatron-detroit-lions-at-crossroad-of-greatness-and-disappointment
My column: MSU vs. Ohio State about Spartans writing a new course in history: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20141105/msu-vs-ohio-state-about-the-spartans-creating-a-new-course-in-history-pat-caputo-says