Spartans Welcome Central Michigan for Final Non-Conference Game
 
 
 
B.J. Cunningham leads the Big Ten in receptions (26) and receiving yards (120.3 ypg.).
 
B.J. Cunningham leads the Big Ten in receptions (26) and receiving yards (120.3 ypg.).
 
 

Sept. 23, 2011

RV/No. 23 Michigan State (2-1) vs. Central Michigan (1-2)
 Date | Time Saturday, Sept. 24 | 12:01 p.m.
 Location East Lansing, Mich. | Spartan Stadium (75,005/Natural Grass)
 Televison ESPNU (Pam Ward, Dan Hawkins)
 Radio Spartan Sports Network (Listen Live)
 Satellite Radio SIRIUS: Channel 112; XM: Channel 197
 Radio (Mobile) Broadcast available on Spartan Sports Network Mobile App: iPhone/iPad | Android
 Tickets Available at www.msuspartans.com
 Parking/Stadium Information Gameday Answers | Tailgating Information
 Game Notes Michigan State | Central Michigan
 Statistics Michigan State | Central Michigan
 Live Stats  Live Stats (Mobile Users) | Gametracker
 Social Media @MSU_Football   |  Facebook

STORYLINE
Michigan State (2-1) hosts Central Michigan (1-2) Saturday at noon in Spartan Stadium. The game will be televised on ESPNU.

FIRST-AND-10 (what you need to know about the MSU-CMU matchup) -
• Saturday's game marks just the eighth meeting between Michigan State and Central Michigan. The Spartans lead the all-time series 4-3. All games in the series have been played in Spartan Stadium with the Chippewas winning the first two meetings, 20-3 in 1991 and 24-20 in 1992, and MSU then taking the next four: 48-34 in 1993, 38-7 in 1998, 35-21 in 2001 and 24-7 in 2004. In the last meeting, CMU edged the Spartans, 29-27, in 2009.

• Michigan State has compiled a 39-7-2 record (.833) against current members of the Mid-American Conference (2-0 vs. Akron, 2-0 vs. Bowling Green, 4-3 vs. Central Michigan, 8-0 vs. Eastern Michigan, 1-0 vs. Kent State, 3-1 vs. Miami-Ohio, 1-0 vs. Ohio, 7-1-2 vs. Temple, 1-0 vs. Toledo and 10-2 vs. Western Michigan). With its 29-27 victory in Spartan Stadium in 2009, Central Michigan ended MSU's 15-game winning streak against MAC opponents. Overall, the Spartans have won 24 out of the last 27 meetings vs. MAC teams.

• Second-year Central Michigan head coach Dan Enos was a four-year letterman (1987-90) and two-year starter (1989-90) at quarterback at Michigan State. Enos compiled a 16-7-1 record (.688) as a two-year starter for Coach George Perles, including back-to-back bowl victories (defeated Hawaii, 33-13, in the 1989 Aloha Bowl and USC, 17-16, in the 1990 John Hancock Bowl). As a senior, he threw for 1,677 yards and four TDs while helping the Spartans earn a share of the 1990 Big Ten championship. Enos spent four years as an assistant coach at Michigan State, including one season under John L. Smith (quarterbacks coach, 2006) and three under Mark Dantonio (running backs coach, 2007-09). He also previously served as the quarterbacks coach under Dantonio at Cincinnati from 2004-05.

• In August 2009, Michigan State Athletics Director Mark Hollis outlined plans for a "Celebrate the State" football series, featuring 12 games over 10 seasons (2011-2020) against Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan that includes the Spartans making one road trip each to Mount Pleasant, Ypsilanti and Kalamazoo. Michigan State will play four games each against the Chippewas, Eagles and Broncos during the 10-year period. The Spartans will play Central Michigan in East Lansing during the 2011, 2015 and 2018 seasons, with their first-ever appearance in Kelly/Shorts Stadium scheduled for Sept. 8, 2012.

• Michigan State has compiled a 38-16 record (.704) in games played against non-conference opponents since 1999. Mark Dantonio is 15-8 (.652) against non-conference opponents, including a 13-1 record (.929) in Spartan Stadium. Overall, the Spartans have won 21 of their last 30 non-league games (.700).

• Michigan State leads the Big Ten in passing defense (104.3 yards per game) and total defense (192.3 ypg.) while ranking second in pass efficiency defense (94.4 rating) and third in scoring defense (12.3 points per game). The Spartans also rank among the NCAA's (Football Bowl Subdivision) Top 20 in four of those stat categories: third in passing defense, fourth in total defense, 15th in pass efficiency defense and 17th in scoring defense. Last week, MSU held Notre Dame to a season-low 275 total yards, including just six first downs and 80 total yards in the second half.

• Michigan State has earned a Top 25 national ranking in the USA TODAY Poll for 17 consecutive weeks. It marks MSU's longest streak in the USA TODAY Poll since the Spartans appeared for 20-straight weeks from Sept. 19, 1999-Oct. 1, 2000.

• Fifth-year senior Kirk Cousins, now in his third season as Michigan State's starting quarterback, has a chance to win more games than any other QB in Spartan history. Cousins has compiled an 18-10 record (.643) in 28 career starts (school record: 21 career victories by Jeff Smoker, 2000-03). His career winning percentage (eighth) and career victories (tied for 11th) rank among all active NCAA FBS quarterbacks.

• Fifth-year senior B.J. Cunningham leads the Big Ten and ranks ninth in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in both receptions (8.7 per game) and receiving yards (120.3 per game). Cunningham leads the team in receptions (26), receiving yards (361) and 20-yard receptions (5). Eighteen of his 26 receptions (69 percent) have resulted either a touchdown or a first down. Cunningham has caught at least one pass in 37 consecutive regular-season games - tied for the fourth-longest active streak in the NCAA FBS.

• Michigan State's starting linebackers - Max Bullough (21), Denicos Allen (16) and Chris Norman (15) - rank 1-2-3 on the team in tackles. Bullough (49) and Allen (45) also rank 1-2 in production points.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS -
• In five seasons under Mark Dantonio, Michigan State has produced a 24-6 record (.800) in home games, including its current nine-game winning streak. It matches MSU's longest home streak since winning nine-straight from 1998-2000.

• In eight seasons as a head coach, Mark Dantonio's teams have compiled a 20-12 record (.625) during the month of September, including a 15-5 mark (.750) at Michigan State.

Kirk Cousins recorded his fourth career 300-yard passing game at Notre Dame while setting personal bests for pass completions (34) and pass attempts (53). His 329 passing yards are the most every by a Spartan quarterback against the Irish (previous record: 327 yards by Drew Stanton, 2005). His 34 completions are second-highest single-game total in MSU history (school record: 35 by Jeff Smoker vs. Ohio State, 2003) while his 53 attempts are fifth-best figure in school history and the most since Brian Hoyer attempted a school-record 61 passes at Penn State in 2006.

Kirk Cousins is 20-for-24 passing (.833) for 185 yards on third downs, with 11 of those completions resulting in first downs.

• Senior Keshawn Martin has accounted for touchdowns in five different ways during his career (rushing, receiving, passing, punt return and kickoff return), joining Florida International's T.Y. Hilton and Western Kentucky's Darrius Brooks as the only active players in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision that have accomplished that feat.

Isaiah Lewis and the Spartans rank fourth in the nation in total defense, allowing just 192.3 yards per game.


• Sophomore Nick Hill has emerged as one of the Big Ten's most dangerous kickoff returners. Hill currently ranks fourth in the Big Ten and 22nd in the NCAA FBS in kickoff returns, averaging 28.7 yards per runback. He returned four kickoffs for 129 yards (32.3 avg.) at Notre Dame, including a career-long 42-yard return in the second quarter.

MSU/CENTRAL MICHIGAN COACHING CONNECTIONS -
• Second-year Central Michigan head coach Dan Enos was a four-year letterman (1987-90) and two-year starter (1989-90) at quarterback at Michigan State. Enos compiled a 16-7-1 record (.688) as a two-year starter for Coach George Perles, including back-to-back bowl victories (defeated Hawaii, 33-13, in the 1989 Aloha Bowl and USC, 17-16, in the 1990 John Hancock Bowl). As a senior, he threw for 1,677 yards and four TDs while helping the Spartans earn a share of the 1990 Big Ten championship. Enos still ranks among MSU's all-time leaders in pass attempts (No. 12 at 478), pass completions (No. 12 at 297), completion percentage (No. 4 at .621), passing yards (No. 12 at 3,837) and total yards (No. 11 at 4,301).

Dan Enos spent four years as an assistant coach at Michigan State, including one season under John L. Smith (quarterbacks coach, 2006) and three under Mark Dantonio (running backs coach, 2007-09). Enos previously served as the quarterbacks coach under Dantonio at Cincinnati from 2004-05.

• Michigan State wide receivers coach Terrence Samuel spent the 2010 season at Central Michigan, working in the same role under Dan Enos.

• Central Michigan quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator Morris Watts spent three different stints and a total of 12 seasons as Michigan State's offensive coordinator. Watts served in that capacity for eight seasons under George Perles (1986-90 and 1992-94), one under Nick Saban (1999) and three more under Bobby Williams (2000-02).

• Central Michigan offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Mike Cummings served as Michigan State's tight ends and special teams coach under Nick Saban during the 1998 season.

• Central Michigan assistant head coach, special teams coordinator and linebackers coach Kyle Nystrom began his coaching career as a student assistant at Michigan State under George Perles in 1983.

• Central Michigan running backs coach and recruiting coordinator Kort Shankweiler spent two years as a graduate assistant at Michigan State (2008-09) under Mark Dantonio.

• Central Michigan graduate assistant coach Gino Guidugli was Mark Dantonio's starting quarterback at Cincinnati in 2004 and helped lead the Bearcats to a 7-5 record, including a 32-14 victory over Marshall in the Fort Worth Bowl.

• Central Michigan director of football operations Plas Presnell graduated from Michigan State in 1973.

MSU/CMU CONNECTIONS, PART 2 -
• Former Michigan State two-time All-American Lorenzo White's son Lorenzo is a junior cornerback on Central Michigan's 2011 roster. White, who ranks as MSU's all-time leading rusher with 4,887 career yards, finished fourth in the final balloting for the Heisman Trophy in both 1985 and 1987.

• Central Michigan Athletics Director Dave Heeke was raised in East Lansing and graduated from East Lansing High School in 1981. Heeke began his professional career as an assistant athletic events coordinator at Michigan State in 1987.

• Fifth-year Michigan State head women's basketball coach Suzy Merchant was a four-year starter (1987-91) and three-year captain at Central Michigan. Merchant still holds CMU career (463) and single-season (156) records for assists.

• Fifth-year Central Michigan head women's basketball coach Sue Guevara previously spent 10 years as an assistant coach at Michigan State (1987-96) under Karen Langeland.

BOBBY WILSON NAMED HONORARY CAPTAIN -
Former Michigan State defensive tackle Bobby Wilson has been selected honorary captain for Saturday's game against Central Michigan. He will address the team during the pre-game meal and join the 2011 captains at midfield for the coin toss.

A transfer from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M Junior College, Wilson became a two-year letterman for Coach George Perles and helped the Spartans to a combined record of 16-7-1 from 1989-90, including back-to-back bowl victories (defeated Hawaii, 33-13, in the 1989 Aloha Bowl and USC, 17-16, in the 1990 John Hancock Bowl) and two Top 20 finishes in the wire service polls.

As a junior in 1989, Wilson posted 37 tackles (25 solos, 12 assists), with six resulting in losses (39 yards) including four sacks (37 yards). He made a season-high six tackles against Minnesota, with three for losses including two sacks (18 yards). His third tackle for loss resulted in a safety, as he hauled down Darrell Thompson in the end zone.

The 6-foot-2, 278-pound Wilson earned third-team All-America honors from the Football News as a senior after recording a career-best 77 tackles (45 solos, 32 assists) in 1990. The second-team All-Big Ten selection led the team in sacks (5 for 31 yards) and ranked second in tackles for loss (13 for 48 yards). He posted at least one tackle for loss in eight games. Wilson produced a career-high 16 tackles at Northwestern, including three stops behind the line of scrimmage (11 yards). He registered three tackles for loss (11 yards) against Purdue, including two sacks. Wilson tallied 15 tackles against Notre Dame.

The Chicago, Ill., native was selected by the Washington Redskins in the first round (No. 17 overall) of the 1991 National Football League Draft. As a rookie, Wilson was a member of the 1991 Redskin team that defeated Buffalo, 37-24, in Super Bowl XXVI. He spent four seasons in Washington (1991-94) and was credited with 141 career tackles, including 11 sacks.

CELEBRATE 2011 WEEKEND -
Michigan State University will induct five members into its Athletics Hall of Fame on Thursday, Sept. 22. The Class of 2011 includes: morten Andersen (football, 1978-81), Mateen Cleaves (basketball, 1996-2000), Dana Cooke (volleyball, 1993-96), Kisha (Kelley) Simpson (basketball, 1991-95) and Charles McCaffree Jr. (swimming & diving coach, 1941-69). In addition, the Class of 2011 will be introduced at halftime of Saturday's MSU-Central Michigan game in Spartan Stadium.

Here are bullet-point sketches for MSU's Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2011:

Morten Andersen (football, 1978-81)
Hometown - Struer, Denmark

Named to the Walter Camp Football Foundation All-Century Team (1900-2000) . . . 1981 All-American . . . Connected on nine field goals from 50-plus yards during his college career, including a Big Ten-record 63-yarder at Ohio State in 1981 . . . Seven-time Pro Bowl selection during his 25-year career and retired from the NFL in 2008 as the all-time leading scorer with 2,544 points.

Mateen Cleaves (basketball, 1996-2000)
Hometown - Flint, Mich.
Three-time All-American . . . Two-time Big Ten Player of the Year . . . Named 2000 NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player after leading Michigan State to its second national title in school history . . . Set Big Ten single-game (20), single-season (274) and career (816) records for assists.

Dana Cooke (volleyball, 1993-96)
Hometown - Burlington, Ontario
Three-time All-American and two-time All-Big Ten selection . . . Co-captained the 1995 volleyball team to the program's only NCAA Semifinal appearance . . . Helped MSU capture its first-ever Big Ten title in 1995 and again in 1996 . . . Three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection.

Kisha (Kelley) Simpson (basketball, 1991-95)
Hometown - Detroit, Mich.
Became the first All-American in Spartan women's basketball history . . . Three-time All-Big Ten selection and team MVP . . . Finished her illustrious career as MSU's all-time leading scorer with 1,668 points (15.2 career scoring average) . . . Became first player in MSU history to score at least 500 points in two separate seasons.

Charles McCaffree Jr. (swimming & diving coach, 1941-69)
Hometown - Sioux Falls, S.D.
The longest tenured swimming and diving coach in program history from 1941-69 led his teams to a combined record of 191-58-2, including 25-consecutive winning seasons . . . His student-athletes earned All-America honors 322 times, won 34 Big Ten titles, claimed 22 NCAA titles and qualified six individuals for the Olympics . . . Coached the Spartans to eight-straight Central Collegiate Conference Championships from 1942-50 and led MSU to its first-ever Big Ten Championship in 1957 . . . Presented the National Collegiate and Scholastic Swimming Trophy in 1965 and inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1976.

DANTONIO & STAFF PARTICIPATE IN COACH TO CURE MD PROJECT -
Saturday, Michigan State's Mark Dantonio and his staff will join thousands of coaches nationwide in all levels of collegiate football by wearing an armband with the Coach to Cure MD logo to raise awareness and research funding for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most prolific genetic killer diagnosed in childhood. Now in its fourth year, Coach to Cure MD is a project of Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD) in partnership with the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA).

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy is the most common fatal genetic disorder diagnosed during childhood and primarily affects boys across all races and cultures. Boys and young men with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy develop progressive muscle weakness that eventually causes loss of mobility, wheelchair dependency and a decline in respiratory and cardiac function. Currently, there is no cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and limited therapeutic options exist.

The Duchenne gene is found on the X-chromosome, so it primarily affects boys - approximately one in every 3,500 live male births across all races and cultures.

In a partnership with PPMD, all coaches in the AFCA have been invited to participate in Coach to Cure MD: a one-day, game-day awareness event and fundraiser for Duchenne research. Football fans can donate to Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy research by either going online to www.CoachtoCureMD.org or by texting the word "CURE" to 90999 (a $5 donation will automatically be added to your next phone bill).

Last year, over 500 different institutions and 9,467 college coaches participated in the Coach to Cure MD. Since its inception in 2008, the Coach to Cure MD program has raised approximately $1 million.