Sunday, October 13, 2013

Spartans knock off the Hoosiers, and I was there in person!

No sooner had I lamented the possibility that I may not attend an MSU football game in person than I was the lucky beneficiary of a ticket to yesterday's Homecoming game between the Spartans and Indiana. I have my brother-in-law to thank, who found himself with an extra ticket early Saturday morning and rang me up.

So my relatively modest streak of consecutive years attending at least one MSU football game has been extended to 21 seasons. It was also a privilege to be physically present for the 500th game in Spartan Stadium history.

The weather in East Lansing was glorious yesterday, with temperatures in the 70s and only one small cloud in the sky that I could see. It was certainly the most beautiful Homecoming I've seen in several years, and definitely better that last year's rainy, cloudy, wet day that also featured a disappointing loss to the Iowa Hawkeyes.

Against Indiana, the Spartans played a good, if not great, game. The Hoosiers did manage to break a long touchdown run on their first possession, taking a quick 7-0 lead. The Spartan defense, however, got things straightened out and did a good job containing Indiana's no-huddle offense. Of the the four touchdowns that the Hoosiers scored, two were the result of MSU miscues: With MSU up 14-7, MacGarrett Kings fumbled a punt return late in the second quarter and Indiana took over in great field position and scored to tie the game at 14-all. Then, late in the fourth quarter and up 42-21, the Spartans gave the Hoosiers the ball on a bizarre interception that deflected off an MSU receiver's hand and into the arms of an Indiana defensive back. The Hoosiers had possession inside the MSU 40-yard line and quickly punched it in to cut the score to 42-28. The final score is deceptive, as I don't think the game was quite as close as one would assume by looking at the box score.

In any case, it was a good win against a much improved Hoosiers team, and I'm encouraged by the strides the offense has taken in the last three weeks. I feel a little ridiculous freaking out as I did after the Notre Dame game: perhaps I should have had a little more confidence in the coaching staff's ability to get it straightened out and find the right players to fit in the correct spots.

Time to take a time out and watch a little Staudt on Sports to relive yesterday's game. I will try and get back to this later, with the operative word being "try" because you know how that goes.

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