Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Media Guide Available Online
 
 
 
<blank>
 

 
 

Dec. 19, 2012

EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State's 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Media Guide is now available online at msuspartans.com.

The 96-page book features updated game notes, player biographies, 2012 statistics and game recaps.

Michigan State (6-6, 3-5 Big Ten) vs. TCU (7-5, 4-5 Big 12)
 Date | Time Saturday, Dec. 29 | 10:15 p.m. ET
 Location Tempe, Ariz. | Sun Devil Stadium (71,000/natural grass)
 Bowl Guide MSU Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Guide
 Ticket Information Buy Tickets
 Televison ESPN
 Broadcast Team Brad Nessler (play-by-play) | Todd Blackledge (analyst) | Holly Rowe (sidelines)
 Radio Spartan Sports Network (Listen Live) | Radio Affiliates
 Radio (Mobile) Broadcast available on Spartan Sports Network Mobile App: iPhone/iPad | Android
 Game Notes Michigan State | TCU
 Statistics Michigan State | TCU
 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Information Official Website | MSU Bowl Central
 Social Media @MSU_Football   |  Facebook

FIRST-AND-10 (what you need to know about the MSU-TCU matchup) -
• The 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl marks the second-ever meeting between Michigan State and TCU. The first meeting came 59 years ago in Week 3 of the 1953 season, as MSU defeated the Horned Frogs, 26-19, in Spartan Stadium.

• The Spartans are bowl eligible for a school-record sixth consecutive year (2007 Champs Sports Bowl, 2009 Capital One Bowl, 2010 Alamo Bowl, 2011 Capital One Bowl, 2012 Outback Bowl, 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl).

• Michigan State is making its 23rd postseason bowl appearance overall, including its first-ever trip to the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. The Spartans are 8-14 (.364) in bowl games. With its 33-30 triple-overtime victory over No. 18 Georgia in the 2012 Outback Bowl, MSU ended a five-game losing streak in postseason play, posting its first bowl victory since defeating Fresno State, 44-35, in the 2001 Silicon Valley Football Classic.

• Michigan State has compiled an 18-2-1 record (.881) against current members of the Big 12 Conference (1-0 vs. Baylor, 2-0 vs. Iowa State, 5-1 vs. Kansas, 5-0-1 vs. Kansas State, 1-0 vs. TCU, 0-1 vs. Texas Tech and 4-0 vs. West Virginia).

• Over the last five years, Michigan State has won more Big Ten games (27) than any other conference team. (Note: Ohio State won 32 games, but had to vacate seven victories following the 2010 season.)

• The Spartans have won 28 of their last 39 games (.718), dating back to the beginning of the 2010 season, including a 17-7 record (.708) in Big Ten regular-season play. MSU's 28 wins since 2010 are tied for 14th most among NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision teams.

• Twelve seniors will make their final appearance in a Spartan uniform on Saturday, Dec. 29 against TCU in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. The 2012 senior class has helped Michigan State to a record of 34-18 (.654) since 2009, including four-straight bowl bids (2010 Alamo Bowl, 2011 Capital One Bowl, 2012 Outback Bowl and 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl). The 34 wins are the second most by any senior class in the 116-year history of Michigan State football (record: 37 wins by 2011 class).

• Junior Le'Veon Bell, who ranks first in the Big Ten and third in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in rushing at 137.3 yards per game, has been named recipient of the 2012 Elite Running Back Trophy (National Running Back of the Year) by the College Football Performance Awards. Bell has accounted for 91 percent of Michigan State's rushing yards (1,648 of 1,819) and 78 percent of its rushing attempts (350 of 450) in 2012. According to STATS, Bell has gained 834 of his 1,648 rushing yards (51 percent) after contact, which ranks first among all NCAA FBS running backs.

Le'Veon Bell ranks first in the Big Ten and third in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in rushing, averaging 137.3 yards per game.


• Junior linebacker and captain Max Bullough leads the Spartans in tackles (102), tackles for loss (12 for 44 yards) and production points (294). The Butkus Award semifinalist and first-team All-Big Ten selection by the coaches is listed among the league's Top 10 in tackles (ninth at 8.5 per game) and tackles for loss (tied for eighth at 1.0 pg.). A model of consistency, Bullough tallied at least 20 production points in 10 of 12 regular-season games, including the last nine in a row.

• The Spartan defense ranks among the NCAA FBS Top 20 in nine categories: touchdowns allowed (second with 15), total defense (fourth at 273.3 ypg.), pass efficiency defense (fourth at 99.0), pass break-ups (tied seventh at 5.0 pg), rushing defense (eighth at 99.6 ypg.), pass defense (ninth at 173.7 ypg.), scoring defense (10th at 16.3 ppg.), passes defended (tied for 11th at 6.1 pg.) and third-down defense (tied for 12th at .309). In addition, MSU also leads the Big Ten in five defensive categories (total defense, scoring defense, rushing defense, touchdowns allowed, third-down defense).

INSIDE THE NUMBERS -
• Based on cumulative opposition, Michigan State's 2012 schedule ranked as the Big Ten's toughest and nation's fourth-most difficult, according to NCAA figures. MSU's regular-season opponents had a combined record of 78-48 (.619) against other NCAA Bowl Subdivision teams. The Spartans went 4-4 (.500) in games played against bowl-bound teams.

• Michigan State lost five Big Ten games this season by a combined total of 13 points, including one in double overtime (Iowa) and two within the last 10 seconds of regulation (Michigan, Nebraska). During one stretch, MSU had seven-straight games decided by four points or fewer, the longest such streak in school history and the longest by an FBS team since at least 1996.

• Michigan State has compiled a 43-17 record (.717) in games played against non-conference opponents since 1999. Mark Dantonio is 20-9 (.690) against non-conference opponents, including a 16-2 record (.889) in Spartan Stadium. Overall, the Spartans have won 26 of their last 36 non-league games (.722).

• Eleven Spartans received All-Big Ten recognition on first team, second team or honorable mention. First-team All-Big Ten selections included: RB Le'Veon Bell (coaches and media), DB Johnny Adams (coaches), LB Max Bullough (coaches), DB Darqueze Dennard (coaches) and P Mike Sadler (coaches). The five first-team selections were the most for Michigan State since 1999.

• MSU produced back-to-back 11-win seasons in 2010 and 2011 for the first time in program history. The 22 wins from 2010-11 were the highest two-year total in school history and ranked tied for seventh most among NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision teams during that same period.

• Michigan State's 28 wins since 2010 are tied for 14th most among NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision teams.

• Under Mark Dantonio, Michigan State is 34-7 (.829) when leading in time of possession, including a 19-4 record (.826) since 2010. The Spartans currently lead the Big Ten and rank third in the NCAA FBS in time of possession (33:19 per game).

• Under Dantonio, Michigan State is 39-10 (.796) when outrushing its opponent, including a 23-3 record (.885) since 2010.

• Under Dantonio, Michigan State is 17-3 (.850) when rushing for 200-plus yards in a game.

• Michigan State has outscored its opponents 141-85 (+56) in the second half this season (includes overtime).

• Over the last three seasons, Michigan State is 12-6 (.667) in games decided by 10 points or less, including a 3-5 record in 2012. The losses have come against Wisconsin in the 2011 Big Ten Championship Game (42-39) along with Ohio State (17-16), Iowa (19-16 in 2OT), Michigan (12-10), Nebraska (28-24) and Northwestern (23-20) in 2012.

• The Spartans were one of just three teams in the NCAA FBS to play three ranked teams before Oct. 1 (Kentucky and Arizona). It marked the first time MSU has played three ranked teams before Oct. 1 since 1987 (No. 16 USC, No. 9 Notre Dame, No. 7 Florida State).

• Michigan State became the first team to play host to three opponents ranked in The Associated Press Top 25 before Oct. 1 since Stanford and Washington in 2007. The Spartans entertained No. 24 Boise State in the 2012 season opener, No. 20 Notre Dame in Week 3 and No. 14 Ohio State in the Week 5 Big Ten opener. Since 1996, only four teams have played host to three AP Top 25 opponents before Oct. 1 (2000 - Notre Dame).

• Fifth-year senior Dan Conroy has made a school-record 78 consecutive PATs (previous mark: 76 by Brett Swenson, 2007-09; and Dave Rayner, 2003-04).

• Michigan State fell out of the USA TODAY Coaches Poll on Sept. 30 for the first time since the 2010 season. MSU had been ranked in the poll for a school-record 34 consecutive weeks.

• Michigan State was ranked No. 13 in both the AP and USA TODAY Preseason Polls. It marked MSU's highest preseason ranking in the AP Poll since 1979 (No. 10), and its highest-ever preseason rating in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll, which began administering the poll in 1991.

Mark Dantonio: PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS -
• Sixth-year head coach Mark Dantonio owns a 50-28 (.641) record at Michigan State. He already ranks among MSU's all-time leaders in career wins (sixth) and winning percentage (sixth).

• Michigan State is 15-9 (.625) in Big Ten road games under Dantonio, including a 9-3 record (.750) since 2010.

• A trademark of his Michigan State teams has been their ability to produce wins late in the regular season. Under Dantonio, Michigan State has compiled a 14-5 record (.737) in November. His teams have won eight of the last 10 games in November (3-0 in 2010; 4-0 in 2011; and 1-2 in 2012). In 2012, MSU lost back-to-back games (Nebraska and Northwestern) in November for the first time since 2006 when the Spartans dropped three in a row. In the four seasons (2003-06) prior to Dantonio's arrival, MSU went just 2-11 (.154) in November.

• Dantonio has recorded 50 wins from 2007-12, the most by a Spartan head coach in his first six seasons ("Biggie" Munn ranks second, with 45 wins from 1947-1952).

• Dantonio became the first head coach in MSU history to win at least nine games three times in his first five seasons (9 wins in 2008; back-to-back 11-win seasons in 2010 and 2011).

• Dantonio has won at least nine games in a season three times (9 in 2008, 11 in 2010, 11 in 2011), tying him with the most seasons of at least nine wins of any coach in MSU history ("Biggie" Munn, 1951, 1952, 1953; Duffy Daugherty, 1955, 1965, 1966).

• Since 2007, Dantonio has helped produce 20 First-Team All-Big Ten selections, four consensus First-Team All-Americans (2008: RB Javon Ringer; 2009-10: LB Greg Jones; and 2011: DT Jerel Worthy) and 13 NFL Draft picks, including six in 2012. It marked the most NFL Draft selections for the Spartans since seven players were taken in 2000.


• From his first day on the job, Dantonio has pledged to support student-athletes as they pursue excellence, both in the classroom and on the playing field. In his first five seasons, nearly 80 percent (72 of 91) of his Michigan State players who have completed their eligibility have earned their undergraduate degrees. In addition, 70 Spartans have earned Academic All-Big Ten honors, including four Academic All-Americans (2009: Blair White, first team; 2011-12: Mike Sadler, second team; 2012: Max Bullough, second team).

• During Dantonio's tenure at Michigan State, only two of his assistants have left the program, with both departing to become head coaches at the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision: Dan Enos (Central Michigan, 2010-present) and Don Treadwell (Miami-Ohio, 2011-present).

• Under Dantonio, Michigan State has produced a 31-11 record (.738) in home games. The Spartans have won 16 of their last 21 home games. At 2-5, MSU finished the 2012 season with a losing record at home for only the 10th time in Spartan Stadium history and the first time since 2006 (also went 2-5). With its 20-3 victory on Sept. 15, Notre Dame snapped MSU's 15-game home winning streak - the fifth-longest in school history. Prior to the 2012 season, the Sporting News named Spartan Stadium No. 3 on its "Five Toughest Places to Play Right Now" list.

• Dantonio has led Michigan State to Top 25 finishes in three of the last four seasons (2008: No. 24 both polls; 2010: No. 14 both polls; and 2011: No. 10 USA TODAY/No. 11 AP).

UPON FURTHER REVIEW -
• The 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl marks MSU's second-ever appearance in Sun Devil Stadium, as the Spartans lost the 1986 season opener at Arizona State, 20-17.

• The 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl against TCU marks Michigan State's 129th consecutive live TV appearance (games televised regionally or nationally since November 2002).

STAT LEADERS -
Michigan State (after 12 games):
Rushing - Le'Veon Bell (350 carries for 1,648 yards, 4.7 avg., 11 TDs)
Passing - Andrew Maxwell (228 of 431 for 2,578 yards, 13 TDs, 9 INTs)
Receiving - Bennie Fowler (41 catches for 524 yards, 12.8 avg., 4 TDs)
Tackles - Max Bullough (102 tackles, 49 solos, 53 assists, 12.0 TFL, 2.5 sacks)

TCU (after 12 games):
Rushing - B.J. Catalon (116 carries for 562 yards, 4.8 avg., 0 TDs)
Passing - Trevone Boykin (154 of 263 for 1,853 yards, 15 TDs, 9 INTs)
Receiving - Josh Boyce (61 catches for 800 yards, 13.1 avg., 7 TDs)
Tackles - Kenny Cain (74 tackles, 44 solos, 30 assists, 5.5 TFL, 2 INTs)

CURRENT SPARTANS IN POSTSEASON BOWL GAMES -
Career Stat Leaders

Rushing - Le'Veon Bell (2 games: 21 carries for 61 yards, 2.9 avg., 2 TDs)
Passing - Andrew Maxwell (1 game: 2-of-6 passing for 43 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs)
Receiving - Le'Veon Bell (2 games: 5 catches for 39 yards, 7.8 avg.)
Tackles - Johnny Adams (3 games: 12 tackles)

MSU/TCU SERIES NOTES -
The 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl marks the second-ever meeting between Michigan State and TCU. The first meeting came 59 years ago in Week 3 of the 1953 season, as MSU defeated the Horned Frogs, 26-19, in Spartan Stadium.

As a head coach, Mark Dantonio has a 1-0 record against TCU (Oct. 30, 2004: Cincinnati 21, TCU 10).

MSU/TCU COACHING CONNECTIONS -
• Michigan State defensive line coach Ted Gill and TCU co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Rusty Barnes spent one season together at Cincinnati (2003) under head coach Rick Minter.

• TCU safeties coach Chad Glasgow served as a graduate assistant under Gill for the 1995 season at Oklahoma State.

THE LAST MEETING -
Oct. 10, 1953, in East Lansing, Mich.: Tom Yewcic threw two fourth-quarter touchdown passes as Michigan State rallied from a 19-7 deficit for a 26-19 victory over TCU.

The Spartans jumped out to a 7-0 first-quarter lead as Billy Wells capped a 10-play, 68-yard drive with a 1-yard TD run up the middle. TCU pulled to within 7-6 on Ray McKown's 34-yard TD strike to Ronald Clinkscale.

McKown opened TCU's next series with a 34-yard completion to David Finney to the MSC 9. On the next play, Don Sanford scored on a 9-yard toss from Clinkscale as the Horned Frogs took a 13-7 lead.

TCU opened the second half with a seven-play, 65-yard drive and extended its lead to 19-7 on Malvin Fowler's 41-yard bomb to Finney.

Early in the fourth quarter, Michigan State cut its deficit to 19-13 as LeRoy Bolden finished off a 10-play, 69-yard drive with a 4-yard TD run off right tackle.

TCU turned the ball over on its next possession as Sammy Morrow fumbled a handoff and Bill Quinlan recovered at the Horned Frog 27. Two plays later, Michigan State regained the lead at 20-19 as Evan Slonac scored on a 35-yard screen pass from Yewcic.

The Spartans built a 26-19 lead midway through the fourth quarter, as James Ellis scored on a 5-yard toss from Yewcic on a fourth-and-goal play.

The game ended as McKown's Hail Mary pass attempt from the MSC 43 was batted down at the goal line by Wells as the Spartans improved to 3-0. Bolden and Wells combined to rush 25 times for 127 yards, as MSC outgained TCU on the ground, 228-163.

SPARTAN BOWL HISTORY -
The Spartans are bowl eligible for a school-record sixth consecutive year (2007 Champs Sports Bowl, 2009 Capital One Bowl, 2010 Alamo Bowl, 2011 Capital One Bowl, 2012 Outback Bowl, 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl). Mark Dantonio also becomes the first coach in Michigan State history to earn a postseason bowl bid in each of his first six seasons.

Anthony Rashad White celebrates after blocking a Georgia field goal in the third overtime that sealed MSU's win over the Bulldogs in the 2012 Outback Bowl.


Michigan State is making its 23rd postseason bowl appearance overall, including its first-ever trip to the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. The Spartans are 8-14 (.364) in bowl games. With its 33-30 triple-overtime victory over No. 18 Georgia in the 2012 Outback Bowl, MSU ended a five-game losing streak in postseason play, posting its first bowl victory since defeating Fresno State, 44-35, in the 2001 Silicon Valley Football Classic.

Eight of Michigan State's last 10 bowl opponents have been ranked in The Associated Press Top 25, including No. 18 Georgia in the 2012 Outback Bowl, No. 15 Alabama in the 2011 Capital One Bowl, No. 16 Georgia in the 2009 Capital One Bowl, No. 14 Boston College in the 2007 Champs Sports Bowl, No. 22 Nebraska in the 2003 Alamo Bowl, No. 20 Fresno State in the 2001 Silicon Valley Football Classic, No. 10 Florida in the 2000 Florida Citrus Bowl and No. 21 Washington in the 1997 Aloha Bowl.

Here's how Michigan State has fared in its 22 previous bowl games (MSU wins in bold type):

1938 Orange: Auburn 6, MSU 0
1954 Rose: MSU 28, UCLA 20
1956 Rose: MSU 17, UCLA 14

1966 Rose: UCLA 14, MSU 12
1984 Cherry: Army 10, MSU 6
1985 All-American: Georgia Tech 17, MSU 14
1988 Rose: MSU 20, USC 17
1989 Gator: Georgia 34, MSU 27
1989 Aloha: MSU 33, Hawaii 13
1990 Sun: MSU 17, USC 16
1993 Liberty: Louisville 18, MSU 7
1995 Independence: LSU 45, MSU 26
1996 Sun: Stanford 38, MSU 0
1997 Aloha: Washington 51, MSU 23
2000 Florida Citrus: MSU 37, Florida 34
2001 Silicon Valley: MSU 44, Fresno State 35

2003 Alamo: Nebraska 17, MSU 3
2007 Champs Sports: Boston College 24, MSU 21
2009 Capital One: Georgia 24, MSU 12
2010 Alamo: Texas Tech 41, MSU 31
2011 Capital One: Alabama 49, MSU 7
2012 Outback: MSU 33, Georgia 30 (3OT)

SPARTANS vs. BIG 12 TEAMS -
Michigan State has compiled an 18-2-1 record (.881) against current members of the Big 12 Conference (1-0 vs. Baylor, 2-0 vs. Iowa State, 5-1 vs. Kansas, 5-0-1 vs. Kansas State, 1-0 vs. TCU, 0-1 vs. Texas Tech and 4-0 vs. West Virginia).

DANTONIO NO STRANGER TO POSTSEASON PLAY -
Mark Dantonio is making his 21st appearance in postseason play (as a graduate assistant, assistant coach or head coach), including four NCAA I-AA playoff and 17 bowl games. Dantonio has compiled a 7-9 record (.438) in bowl games.

Dantonio becomes the first coach in Michigan State history to earn a postseason bowl bid in each of his first six seasons.

SPARTANS TOUGH IN NON-CONFERENCE GAMES -
Michigan State has compiled a 43-17 record (.717) in games played against non-conference opponents since 1999. Mark Dantonio is 20-9 (.690) against non-conference opponents, including a 16-2 record (.889) in Spartan Stadium. Overall, the Spartans have won 26 of their last 36 non-league games (.722). Here's a look at Michigan State's non-conference results under Dantonio (since 2007):

MSU/PHOENIX CONNECTIONS -
• Arizona Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson was a four-year letterman in football at Michigan State, where he played for both Denny Stolz (1975) and Darryl Rogers (1976-78). Gibson earned First-Team All-Big Ten and First-Team All-America honors as a senior while helping lead the Spartans to a share of the 1978 Big Ten Championship. He set career highs in receptions (42), receiving yards (806) and touchdown receptions (7) in 1978.

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Gibson led team in receptions for three-straight seasons (1976-78). He led the Big Ten in receptions in conference games in both 1976 (30 for 486 yards and 4 TDs) and 1978 (31 for 613 yards and 5 TDs). The Waterford, Mich., native closed out his career as MSU's all-time leader in receptions (112), receiving yards (2,347) and TD receptions (24). His career 21.0 yards per catch still rank first on MSU's all-time list. He had seven career 100-yard receiving games.

Kirk Gibson earned First-Team All-Big Ten and First-Team All-America honors as a senior while helping lead the Spartans to a share of the 1978 Big Ten Championship.


Gibson's name has appeared on the College Football Hall of Fame ballot each of the last 10 years.

As a junior in 1978, Gibson earned All-America honors in baseball after hitting .390 with 16 home runs and 52 RBI.

He batted .268 with 255 home runs, 870 RBI and 284 stolen bases during a distinguished 17-year playing career in Major League Baseball, with the Detroit Tigers (1979-87, 1993-95), Los Angeles Dodgers (1988-90), Kansas City Royals (1991) and Pittsburgh Pirates (1992). Gibson played an integral role on two World Championship teams (Detroit, 1984; Los Angeles, 1988). He was selected National League MVP in 1988 after batting .290 with 25 home runs and 76 RBI for the Dodgers.

• Phoenix Suns guard Shannon Brown was a three-year starter for Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo from 2004-06. Brown scored 1,183 career points (12.2 ppg.) while helping the Spartans to a combined record of 66-31 (.680) and three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances, including a trip to the 2005 Final Four in St. Louis, Mo. As a junior in 2005-06, he averaged a career-best 17.2 points per game. Brown was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round (No. 25 overall) of the 2006 NBA Draft. He was a key reserve on the Los Angeles Lakers' back-to-back World Championship teams in 2009-10. A seven-year NBA veteran, Brown is in his second season with the Suns.

• Nine former Spartans are listed on the Arizona Cardinals' all-time roster: guard Ed Bagdon (1950-51), linebacker Anthony Bell (1986-90), back Les Bruckner (1945), linebacker Ernest Clark (1968), linebacker Rob Fredrickson (1999-2002), cornerback Renaldo Hill (2001-04), tight end Butch Rolle (1992-93), tackle D.J. Young (2011) and free safety Lonnie Young (1985-90). (Note: franchise history - Chicago Cardinals, 1920-59; St. Louis Cardinals, 1960-87; Phoenix Cardinals, 1988-93; and Arizona Cardinals, 1994-present).

MSU/ARIZONA STATE CONNECTIONS -
• Former Michigan State All-American Frank Kush enjoyed a successful stint as head coach at Arizona State from 1958-79 where he was named the National College Coach of the Year in 1975 and the conference coach of the year six times. Kush compiled a 176-54-1 record (.764) in 22 seasons at Arizona State, including a 6-1 mark in postseason bowl games. He also coached in three all-star games (East-West Shrine Game, Hula Bowl and Senior Bowl).

After 25 years at ASU, Kush moved on to coach the Hamilton Tiger Cats in the Canadian Football League in 1981. A year later, he was named the head coach of the National Football League's Baltimore Colts. Kush changed leagues in 1984 when he became coach of the USFL's Arizona Outlaws.

A three-time letterwinner for the legendary Clarence "Biggie" Munn, Kush helped the Spartans to a combined record of 26-1 from 1950-52, including back-to-back National Championships in 1951 and `52.

He started his senior year on the offensive line, but close calls in the first two games of the `52 season prompted the Spartan coaching staff to move him back to his middle guard position. At 5-foot-9, 185 pounds, Kush combined excellent quickness and sound technique to often disrupt opponent plays before they even got started. In his first game back on the defensive line, he recorded three tackles for loss in a 48-6 win over Texas A&M. In a late-season 14-7 victory at Purdue, he recovered a fumble and his play helped limit the Boilermakers to just 31 rushing yards. As a senior, Kush earned First-Team All-America honors from The Associated Press, Look Magazine, New York News, Fox Movietone, Athletic Publications and All-Catholic after helping anchor a Spartan defensive unit that allowed just 9.3 points and 223.3 total yards per game. He participated in both the 1952 North-South All-Star Game in Pontiac, Mich., and the 1953 Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala.

The Windber, Pa., native was inducted into the National Football Foundation College Hall of Fame in 1995. Kush was named to the Lansing State Journal's MSU Centennial Super Squad (Pre-Big Ten era) as a lineman in 1996 and was inducted into the Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame in 1998 and MSU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000.

• Darryl Rogers spent 20 seasons as a college head coach, including four years at Michigan State (1976-79) and five more at Arizona State (1980-84).

Rogers guided the Spartans to a 24-18-2 record (.568) while coaching three first-team All-Americans (wide receiver Kirk Gibson, tight end Mark Brammer and punter Ray Stachowicz). He led the Spartans to the 1978 Big Ten Championship, claiming the school's fourth conference title. Rogers was honored as the 1978 Big Ten Coach of the Year after the Spartans closed the championship season on a seven-game winning streak, which started with a 24-15 victory at Michigan, to finish the year 8-3 overall and 7-1 in the Big Ten. His 1978 team featured one of the top offenses in school history, setting MSU single-season records for points scored (411) and scoring average (37.4 points per game).

He produced a 37-18-1 record (.670) in five seasons at Arizona State, including back-to-back Associated Press Top 25 finishes in 1981 (No. 16: 9-2) and 1982 (No. 6: 10-2, including a 32-21 victory over Oklahoma in the 1983 Fiesta Bowl).

His head coaching credits also include stops at Cal State Hayward (1965), Fresno State (1966-72) and San Jose State (1973-75).

• Former Michigan State All-America center Dick Tamburo spent eight years as an assistant coach under Frank Kush at ASU from 1958-65. Tamburo later served as Arizona State's athletics director from 1980-84. In May 2006, he was inducted into the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) Hall of Fame.

A three-year letterman for Clarence "Biggie" Munn from 1950-52, Tamburo helped Michigan State to a combined record of 26-1 (.963), including back-to-back National Championships in 1951-52. He earned First-Team All-America honors in 1952 while anchoring an offensive line that helped the Spartans average 272.4 rushing yards per game - the third-highest single-season rushing average in MSU history. Tamburo also was a mainstay on the other side of the ball, as MSU led the nation in rushing defense, allowing only 83.9 rushing yards per game. He recovered three third-quarter fumbles, including one that set up a touchdown, in the Spartans' 21-3 victory over sixth-ranked Notre Dame.

• Former Michigan State Athletics Director Joe Kearney (1976-80) spent six months in the same position at Arizona State before becoming commissioner of the Western Athletic Conference in July 1980.

• Former Michigan State end Chuck Fairbanks (1952-54) worked for four years as an assistant coach under Frank Kush at Arizona State from 1958-61. Fairbanks later spent nine years as a coach head coach, including six seasons at Oklahoma (1967-72) and three more at Colorado (1979-81). He also served as a head coach in the pros, including six years with the NFL's New England Patriots (1973-78) and one season with the USFL's New Jersey Generals (1983).

2012 SENIOR CLASS: SECOND WINNINGEST IN MSU HISTORY -
The 2012 senior class has helped Michigan State to a record of 34-18 (.654) since 2009, including four-straight bowl bids (2010 Alamo Bowl, 2011 Capital One Bowl, 2012 Outback Bowl and 2012 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl). The 34 wins are the second most by any senior class in the 116-year history of Michigan State football (record: 37 wins by 2011 class).

The 2012 senior class includes cornerback Johnny Adams (Akron, Ohio), quarterback Peter Badovinac (Inverness, Ill.), fullback Jeff Bobek (Palatine, Ill.), running back Larry Caper (Battle Creek, Mich.), kicker Dan Conroy (Wheaton, Ill.), nose tackle Doug Curtis (Weston, Conn.), linebacker Steve Gardiner (Dublin, Ohio), linebacker Chris Norman (Detroit, Mich.), offensive guard Chris McDonald (Sterling Heights, Mich.), offensive lineman Ethan Ruhland (Lake Orion, Mich.), nose tackle Anthony Rashad White (Battle Creek, Mich.) and cornerback Mitchell White (Livonia, Mich.). Those 12 seniors were recognized during a pregame ceremony prior to the final home game against Northwestern.

SPARTAN DEFENSE ONE OF THE TOP IN THE NATION -
• After leading the Big Ten in total defense in 2011, the Spartans once again feature one of the top defensive units in all of college football this season.

• The Spartan defense ranks among the NCAA FBS Top 20 in nine categories: touchdowns allowed (second with 15), total defense (fourth at 273.3 ypg.), pass efficiency defense (fourth at 99.0), pass break-ups (tied seventh at 5.0 pg), rushing defense (eighth at 99.6 ypg.), pass defense (ninth at 173.7 ypg.), scoring defense (10th at 16.3 ppg.), passes defended (tied for 11th at 6.1 pg.) and third-down defense (tied for 12th at .309) and. In addition, MSU also leads the Big Ten in five defensive categories (total defense, scoring defense, rushing defense, touchdowns allowed, third-down defense).

The Spartan defense ranks fourth in the FBS in total defense, eighth in rushing defense and 10th in scoring defense.


• Through 12 games, the Spartans have surrendered 15 offensive touchdowns (five rushing, 10 passing) - the second-fewest allowed in the NCAA FBS. Only Notre Dame (9) has permitted fewer TDs. MSU has only allowed five offensive touchdowns in the second half in 2012 (Ohio State, Iowa, two by Nebraska, and Northwestern).

• MSU also ranks tied for second in the nation in rushing touchdowns allowed (5), along with BYU. Notre Dame ranks first, as the Irish have given up just two rushing TDs this season.

• Michigan State has allowed its opponents just 28 trips into the red zone - tied for the fourth fewest in the NCAA FBS. Of those 28 trips into the red zone, opponents have scored just nine touchdowns - the second-fewest TDs allowed (Notre Dame ranks first with eight).

• Michigan State leads the Big Ten and ranks eighth in the NCAA FBS in rushing defense, allowing just 99.6 yards per game. The season rushing average (99.6 ypg.) marks one of the top defensive efforts in Spartan history (10th-fewest allowed). The last time MSU surrendered less than 100 yards rushing per game in a season came in 1999 (76.2 ypg.).

• The Spartans lead the Big Ten and rank No. 10 in the NCAA FBS in scoring defense, allowing just 16.3 points per game. The last time MSU permitted a lower scoring average came in 1989 (13.6 ppg.).

• Michigan State leads the conference and ranks No. 4 in the NCAA FBS in total defense, permitting just 273.3 yards per game. The Spartans haven't posted a lower season average (total defense) since 1987 (241.0 ypg.).

• Through 12 games in 2012, Michigan State has held its opponents scoreless in 22 of 48 quarters (46 percent). In addition, the Spartans have forced their opponents to go three-and-out on 61 of 153 possessions (40 percent; 5.08 per game - tied for sixth in the NCAA FBS ).

• Michigan State's defense has allowed just 71 points in the second half/overtime this season (five touchdowns, 12 field goals). The Spartans have shut out three opponents in the second half (Boise State, Eastern Michigan, Indiana).

• Michigan State has held four opponents (Boise State, Central Michigan, Michigan, Minnesota) without an offensive touchdown this season.

• Michigan State has allowed only 69 points in its five games played away from Spartan Stadium (13.8 points per game) this season: 7 by Central Michigan, 27 by Indiana, 12 by Michigan, 13 by Wisconsin and 10 by Minnesota. Interception returns for touchdowns (by CMU and Minnesota) accounted for 14 of those 69 points.

• The Spartan coaching staff has been adept at making halftime adjustments, as MSU blanked nine of its 12 regular-season opponents in the third quarter this season. MSU outscored its 12 regular-season opponents, 50-27 (+23 margin), in the third quarter.

• In the 17-13 season-opening win over No. 24 Boise State, the Spartans held the Broncos without an offensive touchdown for the first time since 1997. They also limited the nation's highest scoring offense since 2000 to 206 yards of total offense and 37 rushing yards, both lows in the Coach Chris Petersen era at BSU; the 13 points scored are the third fewest under Petersen.

• Since the beginning of last season, Michigan State has held 14 opponents under 100 rushing yards (seven in 2011; seven in 2012) and seven under 10 points. In addition, MSU has held eight opponents under 50 yards rushing (three times in 2011; five in 2012) since 2011.

• Since the beginning of the 2010 season, Michigan State's defense has held 10 opponents to less than 10 points, which is fifth most among FBS teams during that time period.

• Michigan State has forced at least one turnover in 61 of 78 games over the last six seasons (78 percent of the games played since 2007).

NCAA STAT LEADERS -
Here's a glance at how Michigan State ranks among the NCAA individual stat leaders in 2012:

Individual Statistics (Top 50)
Rushing: Le'Veon Bell (3rd at 137.3 yards per game)
Punting: Mike Sadler (22nd at 43.3 yards per punt)
Field Goals: Dan Conroy (t-6th at 1.83 made per game)
All-Purpose Runners: Le'Veon Bell (16th at 155.5 yards per game)

BELL PRESENTED CFPA ELITE RUNNING BACK TROPHY -
Junior Le'Veon Bell, who ranks first in the Big Ten and third in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in rushing at 137.3 yards per game, has been named recipient of the 2012 Elite Running Back Trophy (National Running Back of the Year) by the College Football Performance Awards. Bell becomes just the second Spartan to earn a CFPA Trophy since the program's inception in 2008, joining All-American Greg Jones, who was presented the 2009 Linebacker Trophy (National Linebacker of the Year). He also becomes the third-straight Big Ten running back to be honored by the CFPA (2010: Mikel Leshoure, Illinois; 2011: Montee Ball, Wisconsin).

The goal of College Football Performance Awards is to provide the most scientifically rigorous conferments in college football. Recipients are selected exclusively based upon objective scientific rankings of the extent to which individual players increase the overall effectiveness of their teams.

A first-team All-Big Ten selection (coaches and media) and Doak Walker Award semifinalist, Bell has rushed 350 times for 1,648 yards and 11 touchdowns. His 1,648 rushing yards rank sixth in the NCAA FBS and mark the second-highest single-season total in MSU history. He leads the NCAA FBS in carries (350) - the fourth-best single-season total in school history. Bell has accounted for 91 percent of Michigan State's rushing yards (1,648 of 1,819) and 78 percent of its rushing attempts (350 of 450) in 2012.

The 6-foot-2, 237-pound Bell is one of just four players in the NCAA FBS to produce three 200-yard rushing games in 2012 (Toledo's David Fluellen, Air Force's Cody Getz, Western Kentucky's Antonio Andrews). He also is only the second Spartan to post three 200-yard rushing games in a season (Lorenzo White: school-record four times in 1985). Bell has recorded seven 100-yard rushing games - tied for the second-highest single-season total in MSU history.

Le'Veon Bell has rushed for 1,648 yards in 2012, the second-highest single-season total in MSU history.


According to STATS, Bell has gained 834 of his 1,648 rushing yards (51 percent) after contact, which ranks first among all NCAA FBS running backs. In addition, he has produced 77 first downs and 32 runs of 10 or more yards, including 12 gains of 20 or more yards.

Bell ranks second in the Big Ten and 16th in the NCAA FBS in all-purpose yards, averaging 155.5 yards per game. He also ranks among the conference leaders in rushing TDs (seventh with 11) and total offense (10th at 137.3 ypg.). A complete back, his 30 receptions (154 yards) rank fifth on the team.

The Columbus, Ohio, native has produced the top single-game total in the NCAA FBS this season for carries (44 vs. Boise State) and eighth-most rushing yards (266 vs. Minnesota).

During the 2012 regular-season, Bell was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week three times (Aug. 31 vs. Boise State; Sept. 22 vs. Eastern Michigan; Nov. 24 vs. Minnesota).

He rushed 35 times for a career-high 266 yards - the most by a Big Ten player this season - and a TD in MSU's 26-10 win at Minnesota, as the Spartans became bowl eligible for a school record sixth-straight season. Bell was named CFPA National Running Back of the Week and Big Ten Co-Offensive Player of the Week for his career day against the Gophers. His 266 rushing yards are the sixth-highest single-game total in MSU history. Bell carried the ball eight consecutive plays (for 51 yards) and capped off an 11-play, 57-yard drive with an 8-yard TD run midway through the fourth quarter that iced the game for the Spartans. He also ripped off runs of 26, 40 and 30 yards against the Gophers while accounting for a career-best 275 all-purpose yards - the ninth-best single-game total in MSU history.

Bell ran 32 times for 133 yards against Northwestern.

He gained 188 yards on 36 carries and scored two rushing TDs (runs of 11 yards and 1 yard) in MSU's 28-24 loss to No. 21 Nebraska. It marked his third multi-TD game of the season. Bell also broke runs of 23, 40 and 26 yards against the Cornhuskers. With 77 yards on 21 carries in MSU's 16-13 overtime victory at Wisconsin, he eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing milestone for the first time in his career. Bell became the 13th running back (21 times combined) in Spartan history to record a 1,000-yard rushing season. His first career TD reception came on a 5-yard shovel pass from Andrew Maxwell with 1:08 left in the fourth quarter and sent the game into overtime tied at 10.

Bell carried 29 times for 140 yards and a TD against Iowa. It marked his second-straight 100-yard rushing game against the Hawkeyes (20 rushes for 112 yards in 2011).

He rushed for a game-high 121 rushing yards on 37 attempts in MSU's 31-27 win at Indiana. The 37 carries were the second most in his career (44 vs. Boise State).

Bell set career highs for receptions (8) and receiving yards (58) in a 17-16 loss to Ohio State.

He earned Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honors after rushing for 253 yards (36 carries) and a TD in MSU's 23-7 victory over Eastern Michigan. His 253 yards mark the seventh-highest single-game rushing total in school history.

Bell scored on first-half TD runs of 1 and 7 yards as MSU rolled to a 24-0 halftime lead en route to a 41-7 win at Central Michigan.

He was named CBSSports.com's Heisman Player of the Week and Big Ten Co-Offensive Player of the Week after rushing for 210 yards on a career-best 44 carries in MSU's 17-13 victory over No. 24 Boise State in the season opener. Bell outgained the entire Boise State offense, 210-206, and 84 of his 210 yards came after contact. His 210 rushing yards also were the most by a Big Ten running back in a season opener since Purdue's Ralph Bolden in 2009 (234 vs. Toledo) and the most by a Spartan in an opener since T.J. Duckett in 2000 (219 vs. Marshall). He also had six catches for 55 yards against the Broncos.

Michigan State is 17-3 (.850) when Bell scores at least one rushing TD (2010: 5-0; 2011: 7-1; and 2012: 5-2).

Bell has rushed for 3,201 yards and 32 TDs in 39 career games. He ranks among MSU's all-time leaders in rushing TDs (sixth with 32), rushing attempts (sixth with 639) and rushing yards (seventh with 3,201). Bell ranks among NCAA FBS active leaders in carries (eighth with 639), rushing yards (11th with 3,201) and rushing TDs (tied for 18th with 32). He has 11 career 100-yard rushing games, which is eighth most in MSU history. Bell also has 76 career receptions for 518 yards (6.8 avg.) and one score.

MAXWELL TAKES OVER THE REIGNS AS STARTING QUARTERBACK -
Fourth-year junior Andrew Maxwell, who spent the past two seasons as Kirk Cousins' understudy, is in his first season as the starting quarterback. The 6-foot-3, 212-pound Maxwell ranks third in the Big Ten in passing (214.8 yards per game) and sixth in total offense (207.6 ypg.). He has completed 228-of-431 throws (.529) for 2,578 yards, 13 touchdowns, nine interceptions and six 200-yard passing games this season. His 431 pass attempts (second), 228 completions (fourth), 2,491 yards of total offense (eighth) and 2,578 passing yards (10th) rank among the Top 10 single-season totals in MSU history.

In five road games this season, Maxwell has connected on 102-of-173 passes (.590) for 1,116 yards, eight TDs and three interceptions. His road passing totals rank among the best for Big Ten quarterbacks: tied for first in TD passes (8), third in passing yards (223.2 ypg.) and third in passing efficiency (124.9 rating).

Maxwell recorded his sixth 200-yard passing game of the season, throwing for a career-best 297 yards against Northwestern. His 297 passing yards are the third-highest single-game total by a Spartan quarterback in series history. Maxwell also set career highs for pass attempts (46) and touchdown passes (2; fourth time this season). On MSU's eight-play, 65-yard game-tying scoring drive, he went a perfect 5-for-5 for 53 yards, including a 15-yard TD strike to Aaron Burbridge.

He completed 24-of-39 throws for 216 yards and two TDs to lead Michigan State to a 16-13 overtime victory at No. 25 Wisconsin, as the Spartans recorded their first win in Madison since 2001 while snapping the nation's second-longest active home winning streak at 21 games. Over MSU's last two possessions, Maxwell connected on 9-of-11 passes for 81 yards and two scores. Trailing 10-3 with 6:06 left in the fourth quarter, he hit 8-of-9 throws for 69 yards while leading a game-tying 12-play, 75-yard drive. On third-and-4, his 5-yard shovel pass to Le'Veon Bell tied the score at 10 with 1:08 remaining in regulation. On third-and-8 in overtime, Maxwell fired a game-winning 12-yard TD strike to Bennie Fowler. His 24 completions matched his career high.

His streak of consecutive pass attempts without an interception ended at 233 when Iowa's Greg Castillo came up with a pick in the second overtime.

Maxwell recorded career highs in completions (24) and passing yards (290) in MSU's 31-27 comeback win at Indiana; the 290 passing yards marked the fourth most by a Spartan quarterback against the Hoosiers. His 36-yard touchdown pass to Fowler proved to be the game-winning score as Maxwell engineered his second fourth-quarter comeback of the season (Boise State). Maxwell also connected on a 15-yard TD pass to Larry Caper in the second quarter.

He completed 22-of-42 throws for 269 yards and one TD against Ohio State. His 269 passing yards are the sixth-best single-game total by a Spartan quarterback against the Buckeyes.

Maxwell hit 16-of-29 passes for 159 yards and one score in MSU's 23-7 win over Eastern Michigan. In the second half, he connected on 7-of-10 tosses for 128 yards, including a 10-yard TD strike to Dion Sims to give the Spartans a 16-7 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

In a 20-3 loss to No. 20 Notre Dame, Maxwell set career highs for pass attempts (45) while completing 23 throws to eight different receivers for 187 yards.

Maxwell opened the 2012 season with back-to-back 200-yard passing games against No. 24 Boise State and at Central Michigan and became the first Spartan starting quarterback to win his first two starts since Jeff Smoker in 2000 (Missouri, Notre Dame).

In a 41-7 win at Central Michigan, he completed 20-of-31 passes for a career-high 275 yards and two scores. Maxwell had TD tosses of 20 yards to Sims and 7 yards to Fowler. In the first half, he went 17-of-28 for 213 yards as MSU built a 24-0 halftime lead.

In his first career start against No. 24 Boise State, Maxwell completed 22-of-38 throws for 248 yards and directed a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter. He went 3-for-3 for 38 yards during the nine-play, 56-yard fourth-quarter drive as MSU rallied from a 13-10 deficit. His 18-yard completion to Sims on a third-and-6 play from the BSU 25 set up Bell's game-winning 5-yard TD run. Maxwell iced the game by managing a 13-play, 52-yard drive, including two third-down completions for 15 yards, that consumed the final 6:32 off the clock.

Michigan State's last 19 quarterbacks have compiled a 13-6 record (.684) in their first collegiate start, including a 9-2 mark in home games.

MAXWELL SPREADS THE BALL AROUND -
In his first year as the starting quarterback, Andrew Maxwell has done a nice job of spreading the ball around. Six Spartans have more than 25 receptions, including Keith Mumphery (41 for 511), Bennie Fowler (41 for 524 yards), Tony Lippett (35 for 380), Dion Sims (33 for 451), Le'Veon Bell (30 for 154) and Aaron Burbridge (26 for 342). Five different players led the team in receptions during the 12-game regular season.

SIMS EMERGES AS ONE OF THE NATION'S TOP TIGHT ENDS -
Despite missing nearly three full games with an ankle injury, junior tight end Dion Sims ranks fourth on the team with 33 receptions for 451 yards (13.7 avg.) and two scores. His 33 catches and 451 receiving yards both represent career highs (previous highs: 12 catches in 2011 and 133 receiving yards in 2009). His 33 receptions are tied for the fourth-highest single-season total by a Spartan tight end (Chris Baker 33-461-2, 2000; Mark Brammer 33-360-2, 1978).

Twenty-seven of his 33 receptions (82 percent) have resulted in either a first down or a touchdown.

Sims posted his second 100-yard receiving game of the season (and his career), with five grabs for 102 yards against Northwestern. He had a career-long 44-yard reception from Andrew Maxwell on MSU's second offensive series.

Through the first five games of the 2012 season, Sims led the Spartans in catches (24), receiving yards (313) and TD receptions (2). He sat out entire Iowa game and played only nine snaps at Michigan after suffering an ankle injury early in the first quarter of MSU's Oct. 6 game at Indiana.

The 6-foot-5, 285-pound Sims was named a Fourth-Team Midseason All-American by Phil Steele.

Sims was selected John Mackey and College Football Performance Awards' National Tight End of the Week after recording his first career 100-yard receiving game with six receptions for 112 yards and a score against Eastern Michigan. He had three catches for 73 yards in the fourth quarter, including a 10-yard TD grab from Maxwell that gave MSU a 16-7 lead.

The Detroit, Mich., native had a team-high six catches for 52 yards against No. 20 Notre Dame. He caught three passes for 48 yards at Central Michigan, including a 20-yard TD reception from Maxwell late in the second quarter. Sims recorded a career-best seven receptions for 65 yards in the season opener against No. 24 Boise State.

BURBRIDGE EMERGES AS RECEIVING THREAT -
True freshman Aaron Burbridge, a Big Ten All-Freshman Team selection by ESPN.com and BTN.com, has 26 catches for 342 yards (13.2 avg.). Twelve of his 26 receptions (46 percent) have resulted in a first down, including five 20-yard grabs. In conference games, he led the Spartans in receptions per game (3.4 pg) and receiving yards per game (46.9 ypg).

Burbridge scored his first career touchdown on a 15-yard reception from Andrew Maxwell in the third quarter against Northwestern. He finished with four catches for 47 yards against the Wildcats.

For the third-straight week, the 6-foot-1, 190-pound Burbridge led the Spartans in receptions, with six receptions for 51 yards in MSU's 12-10 loss at No. 23 Michigan. His 19-yard grab from Maxwell on the opening drive of the third quarter helped set up MSU's only touchdown against the Wolverines. He also had a 12-yard catch on MSU's go-head scoring drive late in the fourth quarter.

Burbridge led the team in catches and receiving yards for the second-straight week, with five receptions for 89 yards against Iowa. His season-long 38-yard grab in the second quarter helped set up Dan Conroy's 24-yard field goal that gave MSU a 10-0 lead.

Burbridge was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week after becoming just the second freshman - and first true freshman - in Michigan State history to record a 100-yard receiving game, with eight receptions for 134 yards as the Spartans rallied from a 17-point deficit for a 31-27 victory at Indiana. His totals marked season highs for a Spartan wide receiver.

Burbridge's 134 receiving yards also set a Spartan single-game freshman record (previous: red-shirt freshman Terry Love had nine catches for 103 yards vs. Iowa in 2004) and are the third most by a true freshman in the NCAA this season against an FBS opponent.

The Farmington Hills, Mich., native helped spark MSU's second-half rally against the Hoosiers, with five receptions for 96 yards coming after halftime. He had at least one reception on four of MSU's five scoring drives. In three previous appearances this season, Burbridge had just two catches for 14 yards.

BULLOUGH ANCHORS BIG TEN'S TOP-RANKED DEFENSE -
Junior linebacker Max Bullough, who was named a first-team All-Big Ten selection by the coaches, leads the Spartans in tackles (102), tackles for loss (12 for 44 yards) and production points (294). His 2.5 sacks (15 yards) rank second on the team. The Butkus Award semifinalist is listed among the Big Ten's Top 10 in tackles (ninth at 8.5 per game) and tackles for loss (tied for eighth at 1.0 pg.). In conference games, Bullough finished fourth in the Big Ten in tackles, averaging 9.5 per game.

Max Bullough leads the Spartans with 102 tackles and is tied for the team lead with 12 tackles for loss.


A model of consistency, Bullough tallied at least 20 production points in 10 of 12 regular-season games, including the last nine in a row.

The 6-foot-3, 252-pound Bullough, who was elected a team captain this season, has produced at least one tackle for loss in each of the last seven games, including a 1-yard loss in the regular-season finale at Minnesota. He also posted a team-high seven stops against the Gophers.

Bullough registered eight tackles against Northwestern, with one tackle for loss (2 yards). His half sack (combined with junior defensive end William Gholston) against Kain Colter resulted in a 1-yard loss and a safety in the first quarter. Bullough has now produced at least one tackle for loss in each of the last six games.

He reached double figures in tackles for the fourth time this season and sixth time in his career, with 10 stops against Nebraska.

Bullough recorded nine tackles while setting career highs for both tackles for loss (2.5 for 15 yards) and sacks (2 for 14) in Michigan State's 16-13 overtime victory at No. 25 Wisconsin, as the Spartans recorded their first win in Madison since 2001 while snapping the nation's second-longest active home winning streak at 21 games. MSU limited Wisconsin to 19 yards rushing (37 carries) - nearly 182 fewer than its season average. The Spartans also held the Badgers to 190 total yards - the first time UW managed fewer than 200 yards total offense since Nov. 20, 2004 (186 vs. Iowa). MSU's produced season highs in both tackles for loss (12 for 59) and sacks (5 for 38).

He posted 10 stops, a career-high two pass break-ups and recorded his first interception of the season at Michigan.

Bullough recorded 11 stops against Iowa and posted a season-high 12 stops against No. 14 Ohio State to go along with two pass break-ups and a forced fumble.

The Traverse City, Mich., native has 214 tackles, including 20.5 for losses (76 yards), in 39 career games. Bullough has started every game at middle linebacker since the beginning of the 2011 season (26 consecutive games), a streak that ranks tied for longest on the Spartan defense (strong safety Isaiah Lewis; defensive end Marcus Rush) and second-longest on the team (right guard Chris McDonald, 29-straight starts). He led the team in tackles last season with 89 and was a second-team All-Big Ten pick by the coaches and a honorable mention selection by the media.

Bullough is a third-generation Spartan, following in the footsteps of his grandfather Hank (guard, 1952-54) and father Shane (linebacker, 1983-86) who played football at Michigan State. Max's father, Shane, was also named a team captain in 1986. In addition, his grandfather Jim Morse (halfback, 1954-56) played for Coach Terry Brennan at Notre Dame, and his uncles Chuck Bullough (Michigan State, linebacker, 1988-91), Bobby Morse (Michigan State, running back, 1983-86) and Jim Morse (Notre Dame, cornerback, 1976-77) played college football. Max's brother, Riley, is a freshman linebacker on the Spartan roster.

GHOLSTON PLAYS WELL DOWN THE STRETCH -
Junior defensive end William Gholston earned second-team All-Big Ten honors from the media for a second-straight year after leading the Spartans in sacks (3.5 for 19 yards) and pass break-ups (9) and tying for the team lead in tackles for loss (12 for 44 yards) during the regular season. Gholston also ranks among the Big Ten leaders in tackles for loss (tied for eighth) and pass break-ups (tied for 10th).

Gholston leads the Spartan defensive linemen and is tied for fifth overall in tackles with 50. His nine pass break-ups rank first among NCAA FBS defensive linemen. Gholston has recorded at least one tackle for loss in eight of MSU's 12 games. His 177 production points rank third on the team.

The Detroit, Mich., native posted six tackles against Northwestern. His half sack (combined with junior linebacker Max Bullough) against Kain Colter resulted in a 1-yard loss and a safety in the first quarter.

He contributed five tackles, including one for a 2-yard loss, and a career-best two pass break-ups against No. 21 Nebraska.

The 6-foot-7, 278-pound Gholston was named the College Football Performance Awards National Defensive Lineman of the Week after tallying a season-best 4.5 tackles for loss (10 yards) in Michigan State's 16-13 overtime win at Wisconsin. His 4.5 tackles for loss were the second most by a Big Ten player in a single game this season and rank eighth most by a Spartan defender in a single game. He totaled a career-best 36 production points against the Badgers (previous high: 34 production points vs. Ohio State, 2011).

Gholston has collected 133 tackles, including 29 for losses (97 yards) and nine sacks (51 yards), in 35 career games. His 29 tackles for loss rank tied for 10th most in school history.

ALLEN WREAKS HAVOC IN OPPOSING BACKFIELDS -
Junior linebacker Denicos Allen ranks second on the team in tackles (tied with 76) and production points (210) and third in tackles for loss (9.0 for 42 yards). In conference games, Allen ranked among the Big Ten leaders in tackles for loss (tied for 11th with 7.5 for 32 yards) and tackles (tied for 20th at 7.4 per game; 59 total). An honorable mention All-Big Ten choice by the coaches and media, Allen has produced at least one tackle for loss in five of his last seven games.

The 5-foot-11, 225-pound Allen tallied six tackles, including a 19-yard sack, against No. 21 Nebraska.

Allen posted eight tackles (all solos), including one for a 4-yard loss, in Michigan State's 16-13 overtime win at Wisconsin. MSU limited Wisconsin to 19 yards rushing (37 carries) - the Badgers lowest rushing total since Sept. 23, 2006 (12 against Michigan).

For the first time in his career, Allen recorded double-digit tackles in back-to-back games: a career-best 13 stops against Iowa and 11 at Michigan. His first career interception also came against the Hawkeyes and helped set up MSU's only touchdown, a 14-yard run by Le'Veon Bell early in the first quarter.

The Hamilton, Ohio, native has registered 177 tackles in 39 career games, and already ranks among MSU's all-time Top 20 in sacks (tied for 12th with 13 for 97 yards) and tackles for loss (14th with 28.5 for 131 yards).

EIGHT SPARTANS PARTICIPATE IN FALL COMMENCEMENT -
Eight members of the 2012 Spartan football team participated in fall commencement ceremonies, conducted Saturday, Dec. 15 on the Michigan State University campus: cornerback Johnny Adams (sociology), quarterback Peter Badovinac (general management), kicker Dan Conroy (communication), linebacker Steve Gardiner (packaging), defensive tackle Tyler Hoover (studio art), offensive guard Chris McDonald (interdisciplinary studies in social science - human resources and society), offensive lineman Ethan Ruhland (human biology) and cornerback Mitchell White (interdisciplinary studies in social science - human resources and society).

In just six seasons under head coach Mark Dantonio, 80 Spartans have earned their undergraduate degrees.

BULLOUGH, SADLER NAMED CAPITAL ONE ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICANS -
Michigan State junior linebacker Max Bullough and sophomore punter Mike Sadler have been named to the 2012 Capital One Division I Academic All-America Second Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Sadler earns Second-Team Academic All-America honors for the second year in a row. It also marks the first time Michigan State has had multiple Academic All-Americans in the same season since 2005 when center Chris Morris and quarterback Drew Stanton both received second-team recognition.

Michigan State is one of eight programs with at least two players listed on the 48-man Capital One Division I Academic All-America (first and second) Team.

Bullough, a finance major, maintains a 3.73 grade-point average.

Sadler has achieved perfection in the academic arena, maintaining a 4.0 GPA while pursuing a double major in applied engineering sciences and supply chain management. The two-time Academic All-American has already reached senior status in academic standing. He is the first Spartan to earn Academic All-America honors in back-to-back seasons since Josh Thornhill (2000-01) and just the seventh player in program history to earn multiple Academic All-America honors (Blanche Martin, 1957-58; Allen Brenner, 1966, '68; Dean Altobelli, 1985-86; Shane Bullough, 1985-86; Steve Wasylk, 1992-93; and Josh Thornhill, 2000-01).

To be eligible for the Academic All-America Team, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.3 cumulative grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) for his career. He also must have reached sophomore athletic and academic standing.

FOURTEEN SPARTANS EARN ACADEMIC ALL-BIG TEN HONORS -
Fourteen Michigan State football players have been named to the 2012 Academic All-Big Ten Team: red-shirt freshman offensive lineman Jack Allen, junior linebacker Max Bullough, junior defensive end Jeremy Gainer, sophomore tight end Andrew Gleichert, sophomore center Travis Jackson, junior offensive guard Nate Klatt, red-shirt freshman tight end Paul Lang, junior quarterback Andrew Maxwell, sophomore wide receiver Keith Mumphery, sophomore fullback Niko Palazeti, fifth-year senior offensive lineman Ethan Ruhland, sophomore punter Mike Sadler, red-shirt freshman wide receiver Andre Sims Jr. and junior offensive guard Blake Treadwell. The 14 Academic All-Big Ten selections are the third-highest single-season total in MSU history (2005: 18; 2006: 16).

To be eligible for the Academic All-Big Ten Team, a student-athlete must be a letterwinner who is in at least his second academic year and carry a 3.0 or higher cumulative grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale). Sadler is one of five football players on the 2012 Academic All-Big Ten Team, who carries a perfect 4.0 cumulative GPA.

Michigan State's list of honorees includes seven multi-year selections. Ruhland became the 17th four-time Academic All-Big Ten selection in MSU history. Klatt and Maxwell are featured on the academic all-conference team for the third-straight year, while Bullough, Gainer, Jackson and Sadler have made the honor roll for the second year in a row.

In the first six seasons under Dantonio, 70 student-athletes have been named Academic All-Big Ten, including double-digit totals each of the last five years (2008-12).

SPARTANS FACED ONE OF THE NCAA'S TOUGHEST SCHEDULES -
Based on cumulative opposition, Michigan State's 2012 schedule ranked as the Big Ten's toughest and nation's fourth-most difficult, according to NCAA figures. MSU's regular-season opponents had a combined record of 78-48 (.619) against other NCAA Bowl Subdivision teams. The Spartans went 4-4 (.500) in games played against bowl-bound teams.

Michigan State's 2012 regular-season opponents had a combined record of 78-48 (.619). [Note: Record doesn't include games played against MSU.] Six of MSU's 2012 opponents are ranked in final regular-season Associated Press Top 25: No. 1 Notre Dame, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 19 Michigan, No. 20 Boise State, No. 21 Northwestern and No. 23 Nebraska.