Wednesday, September 16, 2015

My thoughts (or amateurish opinionated blathering) after watching the MSU/Oregon replay

I enjoy watching the Big Ten Network's replays of Michigan State football games because I always notice facets that I may have missed--due to nervousness, distractions, or adult beverages--when I watch the games live.

Montae Nicholson's stripped ball interception was beautiful. What a huge play early in the game.

Macgarrett Kings had a a great second effort after catching a pass, breaking a tackle and getting enough yardage for a first down and keeping a Spartan drive alive.

Vayante Copeland made one of the best and most important open field tackles I've seen when he brought down Royce Freeman in what was a touchdown-saving tackle. His absence late in the game was costly, and I'm concerned about his injury.

For all the yammering about MSU's perceived missed tackles, I noticed several that were extremely important. Riley Bullough had a huge tackle near the goal line that forced Oregon into a fourth down--a fourth down that the Spartan defense stuffed.

Tight end Josiah Price has a knack for making some big touchdown catches, He had one in this game, as well as another catch (after the goal line stand) that gave the Spartans a much needed first down.

Aaron Burbridge could be the next great Spartan receiver. He made an absolutely huge reception on 4th down and 6 that put the ball at the Oregon 6 yard line. L. J. Scott ran in for a touchdown one play later.

Madre London deserves as much credit for his outstanding pass blocking as for his ball carrying ability.

Connor Cook mainly had a good game, but for every time he threaded the needle, he also missed what looked like easier throws. He will need to tighten this up moving forward.

The Spartans may want to either hone the "cutesy" plays a little or eliminate some of them: for example the Damion Terry read-option play that killed momentum in the first quarter.

Chris Frey made what was probably the game's biggest play when he sacked Vernon Adams immediately after Adams missed the wide open receiver for what would have been a go-ahead touchdown for Oregon.

This really goes without saying, but MSU's special teams need to improve.

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