Spartan Football Looks To Bounce Back Against Archrival Wolverines
Oct. 30, 2007
DATE: November 3, 2007
FIRST-AND-10 (what you need to know about Saturday's MSU-Michigan matchup) -
THE COACHES -
Michigan's Lloyd Carr (Northern Michigan 1968) is 120-38 (.759) in his 13th year with the Wolverines. Carr has led Michigan to five Big Ten titles (1997, 1998, 2000, 2003 and 2004) and his 1997 team finished a perfect 12-0 and won a share of the national championship. Prior to being promoted to head coach, Carr spent 15 years on the Michigan coaching staff (1980-94), serving as an assistant under Bo Schembechler and Gary Moeller. His coaching credits also include stops at Eastern Michigan (1976-77) and Illinois (1978-79).
TEAM COMPARISONS -
AVERAGE HEIGHTS & WEIGHTS (STARTERS) -
CLASS BREAKDOWN (STARTERS) -
STAT LEADERS -
Michigan (after nine games):
STAT COMPARISON -
MSU/MICHIGAN SERIES NOTES -
THE RIVALRY -
BATTLE FOR THE PAUL BUNYAN TROPHY -
THE LAST MEETING -
THE LAST MEETING IN SPARTAN STADIUM -
MILLER NAMED HONORARY CAPTAIN -
Prior to signing a National Letter of Intent to attend Michigan State in February 1989, Miller earned All-America and all-state honors at Kettering High School in Waterford, Mich. A three-year starter for Coach George Perles from 1991-93, he still ranks among MSU's all-time leaders in pass attempts (fifth at 746), pass completions (second at 467), completion percentage (second at .629) and passing yards (fifth at 5,037). As a senior, Miller shared team MVP honors after completing 215-of-336 passes (.640) for 2,269 yards and nine touchdowns. A three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection from 1990-92, he earned his bachelor's degree in supply chain management from Michigan State in 2002.
A sixth-round selection by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1994 National Football League Draft, Miller threw for 6,387 yards and 36 TDs during his nine-year pro career (Pittsburgh, 1995-96; Atlanta, 1997; Chicago, 1998-2002; New England, 2004). He earned 27 career starts at quarterback, compiling a 15-11 record as a starter in Chicago. In five seasons with the Bears, Miller recorded three 300-yard passing games. In his first career start against Minnesota on Nov. 14, 1999, he completed 34-of-48 throws for 422 yards and three scores. His 422 passing yards represent the fourth-highest single-game total in Chicago history. In 2001, Miller led the Bears' charge to the playoffs, posting an 11-2 record as a starter during the regular season while establishing career highs in pass attempts (395), pass completions (228), passing yards (2,299) and TDs (13). In 2002, he threw for 1,944 yards while matching his career best with 13 TD tosses.
Miller owns JMK Custom Homes in Clarkston, Mich.
GROUND GAME KEY FACTOR IN THIS SERIES -
SPARTANS RANK SECOND IN ALL-TIME VICTORIES vs. MICHIGAN -
All-Time Wins vs. Michigan
UPSET SPECIALS - Michigan State is 18-22 (.450) in its last 40 games against teams ranked in the Associated Press Top 25, including six straight losses. Fifteen of those 18 wins over ranked teams have come while Michigan State was unranked or ranked below its opponent.
Since November 1997, Michigan State is 9-5 (.643) against teams ranked in the AP Top 10.
SPARTANS OWN 14 WINS OVER RANKED U-M TEAMS - Michigan State has compiled a 14-28-1 record (.337) against ranked Michigan teams, according to Associated Press Polls since 1946. Six of those 14 victories have come in East Lansing, Mich. The Spartans have recorded 10 wins over U-M teams ranked in the AP Top 10.
Here's a look at MSU's 43 games played against ranked Michigan teams:
SPARTANS FEATURE BALANCED OFFENSIVE ATTACK -
TAKE A RIDE ON THE SPARTAN EXPRESS -
In its 52-27 Homecoming victory over Indiana, Michigan State rushed for a season-high 368 yards - the 13th-best single-game rushing total in the NCAA Bowl Subdivision thus far this season.
Junior Javon Ringer and fifth-year senior Jehuu Caulcrick have combined to rush for 1,637 yards and 22 touchdowns in 2007. The Spartans are the only Big Ten team to feature two players ranked among the league's Top 10 rushers: No. 3 Ringer (120.4 ypg.) and No. 10 Caulcrick (61.4 ypg.).
RINGER PACES EXPLOSIVE GROUND GAME -
The 5-foot-9, 200-pound Ringer leads the Spartans in rushing, with 1,084 yards on 173 carries (6.3 avg.).
In Big Ten games, Ringer leads the league in rushing, averaging 137.0 yards per game. He is averaging an impressive 7.4 yards per carry (92 rushes for 685 yards) in Big Ten games.
Ringer also ranks second on the team in receptions (28 for 263 yards) and all-purpose yards (1,347). Fourteen of his 201 touches have resulted in gains of 20 yards or more (10 rushes and four receptions). He has caught at least one pass in each of the first nine games in 2007.
With 103 yards on 23 carries at Iowa, Ringer became Michigan State's first 1,000-yard rusher since T.J. Duckett (1,420 yards) in 2001. It marked his fifth 100-yard rushing game of the season and the 10th of his career. His 18-yard scamper on the first overtime series set up Jehuu Caulcrick's 3-yard TD run.
For the first time in his career, Ringer was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week (shared honor with Northwestern quarterback C.J. Bacher) after rushing for a career-best 203 yards and two scores in MSU's 52-27 Homecoming victory over Indiana. It marked his fourth straight 100-yard rushing games - the longest streak by a Spartan running back since Blake Ezor hit the century mark in five consecutive games in 1989. His 29 carries also marked a career high. Ringer scored on runs of 3 and 64 yards in the first half as the Spartans built a 24-13 halftime lead. He gained 160 yards on 17 attempts in the first half - third most in a first half in MSU history.
With his 185-yard rushing effort (12 attempts) against Northwestern, Ringer became just the 13th player in Spartan history to eclipse the 2,000-yard career milestone. He tied his career high with three rushing touchdowns against the Wildcats, scoring on runs of 4, 47 and 80 yards. His career-long 80-yard run ranks as the 10th-longest rushing play in school history (tied with Clinton Jones, 1965 vs. Ohio State). Ringer accounted for a career-best 239 all-purpose yards against Northwestern, including a team-high six receptions for 54 yards.
He rushed 10 times for 145 yards at ninth-ranked Wisconsin. His 53-yard run midway through the first quarter set up Caulcrick's 2-yard touchdown plunge and his 70-yard gallop on the opening drive of the second half led to a 19-yard field goal by Brett Swenson. Ringer accounted for 233 all-purpose yards against the Badgers, setting career highs in receptions (7) and receiving yards (88).
Ringer gained 144 yards on 26 attempts at Notre Dame, as the Spartans recorded their sixth straight win over the Fighting Irish in South Bend.
The Dayton, Ohio, native ranks ninth on MSU's all-time rushing list with 2,398 career yards (381 carries). Ringer is attempting to become the first running back to lead the Spartans in rushing for three-straight seasons since Sedrick Irvin (1996-98). He led the team in rushing as a true freshman in 2005 (817 yards) and as a sophomore in 2006 (497). His 6.29 yards per carry ranks as the third-highest rushing average in school history and the fourth-best figure among the NCAA's Bowl Subdivision active career leaders.
THOMAS SHOWCASES HIS ALL-PURPOSE SKILLS -
The 6-foot-2, 218-pound Thomas leads the team in receptions (51), receiving yards (906), touchdown receptions (5) and yards per catch (17.8). He needs 94 receiving yards against Michigan to become just the fourth 1,000-yard receiver in Spartan history, joining Courtney Hawkins (1989), Plaxico Burress (1998-99) and Charles Rogers (2001-02).
Thirty-five of his 51 receptions (69 percent) have resulted in either a TD or a first down, including 14 gains of 20 yards or more.
As a kick returner, Thomas has been named Midseason All-American (third team) by Phil Steele. His 772 kickoff return yards already rank as the fourth-best single-season total in MSU history. His 29.7-yard kickoff return average ranks as the second-best figure among the NCAA's Bowl Subdivision active career leaders.
He recorded his fifth 100-yard receiving game of the season, with nine catches for 139 yards in a 34-27 double-overtime loss at Iowa. His 40-yard reception from Brian Hoyer on a third-and-16 play in the final minute of regulation set up Brett Swenson's 29-yard field goal that sent the game into overtime tied at 20. Thomas accounted for 230 all-purpose yards against the Hawkeyes (2 rushes for 6 yards and 3 kickoff returns for 85 yards). It marked the fifth time this season that Thomas has amassed more than 200 all-purpose yards.
Against top-ranked Ohio State, Thomas caught four passes for 77 yards, including a 40-yard reception from Hoyer late in the fourth quarter that led to a field goal.
Thomas had a career-best 13 receptions for 148 yards and a TD in MSU's 52-27 Homecoming victory over Indiana. His 13 receptions tied the second-best single-game total in Spartan history (Plaxico Burress, 13 vs. Florida in 2000 Florida Citrus Bowl). Thomas scored on a 34-yard grab from Hoyer early in the third quarter as MSU extended its lead to 31-13. He returned three kickoffs for 92 yards (30.7 avg.), including a 42-yard runback in the first quarter that set up Javon Ringer's first TD run. Thomas produced 254 all-purpose yards against the Hoosiers.
Thomas accounted for a career-best 266 all-purpose yards in MSU's 48-41 overtime loss to Northwestern. He returned three kickoffs for 143 yards - the ninth-best single-game total in MSU history. His career-long 70-yard kickoff return in the fourth quarter set up a Spartan TD that tied the score at 41. Thomas also had five catches for 61 yards and six rushes for 52 yards.
He caught four passes for 111 yards at ninth-ranked Wisconsin. Midway through the second quarter, Thomas turned a screen pass from Hoyer into an 80-yard scoring play as the Spartans tied the game at 21. He accounted for 230 all-purpose yards against the Badgers, rushing five times for 61 yards and returning three kickoffs for 58 yards.
Thomas accounted for 153 all-purpose yards in Michigan State's 31-14 victory at Notre Dame. He had a game-high four catches for 55 yards, including a 7-yard TD grab from Hoyer that tied the score at 7 midway through the first quarter. His 25-yard reception on a third-and-7 play kept the Spartans' first scoring drive alive. Thomas returned the second-half kickoff 52 yards to the Notre Dame 45 to help set up MSU's third touchdown.
Thomas had four receptions for a career-best 156 yards and a touchdown in MSU's 28-17 victory over Bowling Green. It marked his second-straight 100-yard receiving game. His 76-yard reception from Hoyer in the first quarter set up MSU's first touchdown. His 42-yard catch in the third quarter set up Jehuu Caulcrick's 5-yard TD run, which gave MSU the lead for good at 21-14. Thomas scored on a 17-yard TD grab from Hoyer early in the four quarter. Thomas accounted for 261 all-purpose yards against Bowling Green. In addition to his 156 receiving yards, he returned three kickoffs for 100 yards, including a 39-yard runback, and rushed twice for 5 yards.
Thomas posted the first 100-yard receiving game of his career against UAB, with a career-best five catches for 106 yards including a 44-yard touchdown grab from Hoyer early in the second quarter. Four of his five receptions resulted in either a first down or a TD against the Blazers.
The Ann Arbor, Mich., native appeared in the first 10 games of the 2006 season and finished with just six receptions for 90 yards and one score.
CAULCRICK BULLS HIS WAY INTO THE MSU RECORD BOOK -
With three TD runs at Iowa, the 6-foot, 255-pound Caulcrick moved into third place (tied with Blake Ezor, 1986-89) on MSU's all-time list with 34 career rushing TDs. It marked the eighth multi-TD game of his career. He scored on a pair of 1-yard runs in the first half and a 3-yard run in the first overtime against the Hawkeyes.
With 94 yards on a career-high 23 carries against Indiana, Caulcrick became just the 14th player in Spartan history to surpass the 2,000-yard career milestone. He also scored three times against the Hoosiers (on runs of 1, 2 and 3 yards).
Caulcrick gained 73 yards on 17 carries at No. 9 Wisconsin, scoring on a pair of 2-yard runs in the second quarter. He rushed 20 times for 83 yards in MSU's 31-14 victory at Notre Dame and gained 71 yards on 21 carries against Pittsburgh, including a 2-yard TD run early in the second quarter.
Caulcrick shared Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honors (with Wisconsin's quarterback Tyler Donovan) after rushing 10 times for 93 yards and four touchdowns - all in the first half - to lead MSU to a 55-18 season-opening victory over UAB. His four rushing TDs represent a career high and equal the school record for rushing TDs in a half (Blake Ezor vs. Northwestern, 1989). Caulcrick's four rushing TDs also marked the second-best single-game total in Spartan history (Ezor scored six rushing TDs vs. Northwestern, 1989).
Against UAB, seven of his 10 carries resulted in either a TD or a first down. Caulcrick finished off MSU's first three possessions, scoring on runs of 1, 5 and 42 yards. The 42-yarder marked the longest scoring run of his career. He added another 5-yard TD run early in the second quarter as the Spartans jumped out to a 35-0 lead.
The Findley Lake, N.Y., native has rushed for 2,076 career yards and ranks among the NCAA's Bowl Subdivision (formerly known as NCAA I-A) active career leaders in rushing TDs (tied for No. 9).
HOYER OFF TO AN IMPRESSIVE START -
Twenty-five of his completions have resulted in gains of 20 yards or more.
The 6-foot-2, 212-pound Hoyer recorded his third career 300-yard passing game and his second of the season, completing 25-of-42 throws for 308 yards at Iowa. His 25 completions and 42 attempts represent season highs. Hoyer's 40-yard bomb to Devin Thomas on a third-and-16 play in the final minute of regulation set up Brett Swenson's 29-yard field goal that sent the game into overtime tied at 20.
He completed 20-of-23 passes (.870) for 190 yards in MSU's 52-27 Homecoming victory over Indiana, including a 34-yard TD strike to Thomas early in the third quarter.
Hoyer connected on 17-of-31 passes for 194 yards against Northwestern, including a 19-yard TD toss to tight end Eric Andino that tied the game at 41 in the fourth quarter.
He completed 22-of-36 throws for 323 yards and two TDs in MSU's 37-34 loss at ninth-ranked Wisconsin. His career-long 80-yard TD strike to Thomas tied the score at 21 midway through the second quarter. Hoyer's 3-yard TD toss to Mark Dell on a third-and-goal play early in the third quarter pulled the Spartans within three at 34-31.
Hoyer completed 11-of-24 passes for 135 yards and a career-best four TDs to lead Michigan State to a 31-14 victory over Notre Dame, as the Spartans became the first team to win six-straight games in Notre Dame Stadium. He threw TD passes of 7 yards to Thomas, 3 and 30 yards to Kellen Davis and 16 yards to Dell. Hoyer became the first Spartan QB to throw four TD passes in a game since Drew Stanton had five scoring tosses at Illinois in 2005.
He hit 17-of-29 passes for 250 yards in MSU's 28-17 victory over Bowling Green, including TD tosses of 7 yards to Davis in the second quarter and 17 yards to Thomas in the fourth quarter. His 76-yard bomb to Thomas set up Javon Ringer's 4-yard TD run late in the first quarter.
The North Olmsted, Ohio, native connected on 14-of-17 throws (.824) for 201 yards in MSU's 55-18 victory over UAB in the 2007 season opener, including a 44-yard touchdown strike to Thomas in the second quarter.
The Spartans scored touchdowns on their first six possessions against UAB, with five of those scoring drives directed by Hoyer. He completed his first 10 pass attempts for 172 yards against the Blazers.
Hoyer already ranks among MSU's career leaders in completion percentage (No. 8 at .593) and passing efficiency rating (tied for No. 9 at 128.1).
SAINT-DIC NAMED MIDSEASON ALL-AMERICAN -
Saint-Dic also ranks among the conference (fourth) and national (tied for No. 23) leaders in tackles for loss (12 for 77 yards), averaging 1.33 per game. In addition, he leads the NCAA in forced fumbles (8), averaging 1.0 per game.
Saint-Dic, a Midseason All-America selection by CollegeFootballNews.com (first team), SI.com (second team) and Phil Steele (fourth team), has been named to the midseason watch list for the Ted Hendricks Defensive End of the Year Award.
Through nine games, the 6-foot-1, 255-pound Saint-Dic leads the Spartan defense in production points with 152. Twelve of his 36 total tackles have resulted in losses.
Saint-Dic set the Big Ten single-season record with his eighth forced fumble against top-ranked Ohio State, breaking the mark previously held by Penn State's Michael Haynes (7 in 13 games in 2002). The fumble came on a 7-yard sack in the third quarter that SirDarean Adams picked up and returned 25 yards for a score as the Spartans pulled within 24-14. His eight forced fumbles rank as the second-best single-season total in NCAA Bowl Subdivision history, trailing only Louisville's Elvis Dumervil (10 caused fumbles in 2005).
In MSU's 52-27 victory over Indiana, Saint-Dic forced a fumble while recording a 9-yard sack in the third quarter that Ervin Baldwin scooped up and returned 12 yards for a touchdown.
He recorded a career-best 10 tackles (3 solos, 7 assists), including one for a 2-yard loss, in Michigan State's 48-41 overtime loss to Northwestern.
He recorded at least one sack in four consecutive games (vs. Bowling Green, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame and Wisconsin), tying the school record held by Courtney Ledyard (1996 vs. Louisville, Eastern Michigan, Iowa and Illinois) and Julian Peterson (1999 vs. Ohio State, Northwestern, Penn State and Florida).
Late in the first quarter while recording an 11-yard sack against Wisconsin's Tyler Donovan, Saint-Dic forced his sixth fumble of the season, breaking MSU's single-season record of five previously held by Rob Fredrickson (1993) and Broderick Nelson (2001). He was credited with four tackles and three quarterback hits against the ninth-ranked Badgers.
He compiled a career-best 35 production points in Michigan State's 31-14 victory at Notre Dame, registering four tackles including two for losses (18 yards). Early in the second quarter, Saint-Dic sacked Notre Dame's Jimmy Clausen for a 17-yard loss while stripping the ball from him and recovering the fumble at the Irish 14. Four plays later, Brett Swenson converted a 27-yard field goal as the Spartans built a 17-7 lead. MSU's defense held Notre Dame scoreless in the second half while limiting the Irish to three first downs and 79 total yards.
Saint-Dic shared Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors (with Ohio State's linebacker James Laurinaitis) after recording five tackles, including three for losses (13 yards), and forcing two fumbles in MSU's 17-13 victory over Pittsburgh. Two of Saint-Dic's three tackles for losses resulted in sacks (11 yards). He accumulated 34 production points against the Panthers. It marked the second-straight week that Saint-Dic recorded at least two sacks and forced two fumbles. With MSU leading 14-13 with 4:04 to play, Saint-Dic stripped the ball from Pitt's T.J. Porter on a reverse that Ogemdi Nwagbuo recovered at the Panther 22. Five plays later, Swenson connected on a 23-yard field-goal attempt to extend MSU's lead to 17-13 with 2:54 remaining. MSU's defense forced three turnovers, resulting in all 17 points, and held Pitt to 0-for-12 on third downs.
Despite being a last-minute scratch from MSU's starting lineup against Bowling Green, Saint-Dic enjoyed one of his most productive games in a Spartan uniform, recording four solo tackles including a career-best three sacks (17 yards). His three sacks tied the sixth-best single-game total in Spartan history. Overall, MSU produced seven sacks against the Falcons - its highest single-game total since registering eight sacks against Northwestern in 1999. Saint-Dic tallied 32 production points against the Falcons, forcing two fumbles and registering three quarterback hits. In the second half, the Spartan defense limited Bowling Green to just six first downs, 98 total yards and three points.
Born in Haiti, Saint-Dic impressed his teammates with his relentless pursuit of quarterbacks in practice, earning himself the nickname "sackmaster." He has recorded 12 career sacks (113 yards) and his 10 career forced fumbles rank as the seventh-best total in NCAA Bowl Subdivision history.
BALDWIN ENJOYS BANNER SENIOR SEASON -
Baldwin ranks fifth (tied) in the Big Ten in tackles for loss (1.28 per game) and ninth (tied) in sacks (0.61 pg.). He ranks second on the team in tackles for loss (11.5 for 55 yards), sacks (5.5 for 43 yards) and production points (136), trailing only Saint-Dic. Baldwin registered at least one tackle for loss in six straight games (Bowling Green, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Northwestern and Indiana).
The 6-foot-2, 270-pound Baldwin recorded a career-high six tackles against Indiana, including a career-best two sacks (12 yards). He also returned a fumble - forced by Saint-Dic - 12 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter. Baldwin compiled 32 production points against the Hoosiers, including two quarterback hurries and two QB hits.
He matched his career-best with six tackles at No. 9 Wisconsin, with two resulting in losses (12 yards) including a 9-yard sack. Baldwin produced five stops each against Bowling Green (including career-best 2.5 tackles for loss), Notre Dame and Iowa.
FROSH LINEBACKER MAKES HIS PRESENCE KNOWN -
Jones has recorded double-figure tackles in back-to-back games against top-ranked Ohio State (season-high 14 stops) and Iowa (11). He also compiled a season-best 33 production points against the Buckeyes, including 1.5 tackles for loss (7 yards) and two hits on the quarterback.
He made eight stops (3-5) against Northwestern in his first career start, including 1.5 for losses (2). Jones produced five tackles (2-3) against Pittsburgh, including two behind the line of scrimmage (6 yards). He posted six tackles, including five solo hits, against Bowling Green. In his collegiate debut against UAB, Jones registered seven stops (5-2), including a 6-yard sack.
Jones leads the Spartan special teams in tackles with 10 - all coming on kickoff coverage.
SWENSON FEATURED ON LOU GROZA AWARD WATCH LIST -
The 5-foot-8, 160-pound Swenson ranks second on the team in scoring with 68 points, hitting 10-of-16 field-goal attempts and 38-of-39 PATS.
He connected on 2-of-3 field-goal attempts at Iowa, including a 46-yarder in the second quarter that matched his career long. His 29-yard field goal with four seconds left in regulation sent the game into overtime tied at 20.
His 43-yard field goal with 3:42 left in the game pulled the Spartans to within a touchdown (17-24) at top-ranked Ohio State. Swenson made 2-of-3 field-goal attempts at No. 9 Wisconsin, connecting from 19 and 35 yards and his game-tying 53-yard attempt with 3:23 remaining in the game had the distance but sailed wide left.
His 23-yard field goal with 2:54 left in the game against Pittsburgh gave MSU a four-point cushion, 17-13.
Swenson accounted for a career-best 13 points in the season opener against UAB, hitting 2-of-2 field-goal attempts and all seven extra-point tries. On the final play of the first half, he converted a 45-yard field-goal attempt as the Spartans built a 45-3 halftime lead. Swenson capped off a 14-play, 60-yard drive with a 38-yard field goal late in the third quarter as MSU extended its lead to 48-5.
The award is named in honor of former National Football League great Lou Groza, who earned the nickname "The Toe." Groza, who scored 1,608 points in 21 years with the Cleveland Browns (1946-59, 1961-67), was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1974. The former Ohio State Buckeye made nine Pro Bowl appearances as a standout offensive tackle and placekicker.
A national panel of 300-plus voters, including college head coaches, sports writers, sportscasters, conference representatives, professional kickers and previous Lou Groza Award finalists, selects the recipient.
The selection committee will identify 20 semifinalists on Nov. 6, while three finalists will be named on Nov. 20. The winner will be announced during the ESPN College Football Awards Show on Dec. 6 in Orlando, Fla.
Swenson ranks among the NCAA's Bowl Subdivision active career leaders in field goals made (No. 11 at 1.2 per game) and attempted (No. 12 at 1.7 pg.).
BIG TEN/NCAA STAT LEADERS -
NCAA STAT LEADERS -
Individual Statistics (Top 50)
TWO SPARTANS LISTED ON ACADEMIC ALL-DISTRICT BALLOT -
To be nominated for the Academic All-District Team, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.2 cumulative grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) for his career. He also must have reached sophomore athletic and academic standing.
District IV includes all schools from the states of Alabama, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.
Players named to the Academic All-District Team (released Nov. 8) will have their names appear on the national ballot for Academic All-America honors.
TRUE FRESHMEN IMPACT SPARTAN DEPTH CHART -
Specialist (1): P Aaron Bates.
OPENING-DAY STARTING LINEUP FEATURED SEVEN FIRST-TIME STARTERS -
First-time starters on offense included: wide receiver Mark Dell (6-2, 185, Fr.) and fullback Andrew Hawken (6-2, 240, So.). First-time starters on defense included: defensive end Brandon Long (6-4, 245, Jr.), linebackers Jon Misch (6-2, 200, R-Fr.) and Eric Gordon (6-0, 220, R-Fr.), and cornerback Ross Weaver (6-1, 202, R-So.). Aaron Bates (6-0, 190, Fr.) also made his debut as the starting punter.
MAGIC NUMBER 24 -
SPARTAN TRENDS UNDER DANTONIO -
Games played in Spartan Stadium: 4-1
When leading at halftime: 4-1
When scoring first: 4-1
When leading after first quarter: 4-2
When leading after three quarters: 5-0
Overtime games: 0-2
When gaining more first downs than opponent: 4-1
When gaining 200+ yards rushing: 3-2
When outrushing opponent: 4-2
When gaining 200+ yards passing: 2-2
When gaining more total yards than opponent: 5-2
When leading in time of possession: 3-1
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