Through the first three quarters of last night's game, the Spartans looked like a well-oiled, humming machine of domination.
But as we all know, it wouldn't be a proper Michigan State game without some craziness tossed in the mix.
The fans, apparently thinking the game was won and tiring of the chilly rain, left early and so did MSU's home field advantage. Meanwhile, in a bizarre script so improbable that not even Rod Serling could have dreamt it up, the Nebraska Cornhuskers cut a 27-3 deficit to 27-22. The Huskers' bid for a miracle win, and a Spartan collapse that would make even John L. Smith blush, was thankfully ended by a Trae Waynes interception.
One thing that's clear about this MSU football team: they are supremely talented and capable of utter domination. But maddeningly, they don't yet seem capable of doing it for 60 minutes. This is not due to lack of ability but because, as of now, they haven't developed the killer instinct that made last year's team so great. This may go back to the leadership issues discussed in the previous blog post.
For MSU to achieve all they are capable of--and they have the potential to be one of the most lethal teams in college football--the Spartans need to learn from this near-debacle and play a full 60 minutes from now on.
And one last word about the fans, in particular the students. I've been one their staunchest defenders, but I am extremely disappointed that so many of them left the game at the end of the third quarter. Yes, I realize the weather was chilly and drizzly, but frankly it didn't appear any worse than last year's Michigan game played in almost identical conditions. If we want a top-notch program at Michigan State, our fans and students need to support the team through the ENTIRE game, not just when it's convenient. To the fans who stayed, I applaud you; to the ones who left, unless you were becoming ill or had extenuating circumstances, I'm disappointed that you bailed on the Spartans. The lack of support was one of the factors than nearly cost them Saturday's game.