Q & A With Eric Gordon
Dec. 29, 2009
Consistency is the true mark of a player's impact on his team. Week in and week out, to compete at the highest level regardless of the opposition, is what every football player strives for.
On Michigan State's defense, two linebackers have started side by side for a team-high 26 straight games: Greg Jones and Eric Gordon. While Jones has been a model of consistency during his All-America season in 2009, Gordon has been with Jones every step of the way, ranking second on the team with 84 tackles.
After his red-shirt season in 2006, Gordon has been a fixture in the starting lineup, starting 35 times in 37 career games. He enters Saturday's Valero Alamo Bowl on pace for a career high in tackles, and he also ranks second on the team in production points (175), third in tackles for loss (7.5, 39 yards) and fourth in sacks (3.5, 32 yards).
During MSU's three-game winning streak in the middle of the season, Gordon averaged 9.3 tackles with a sack in each of the victories (vs. Michigan, Illinois and Northwestern). He also produced a career-best 14 tackles in the Homecoming win over the Wildcats.
Overall, Gordon has compiled an impressive 231 career tackles, including 22.5 for losses and 7.5 sacks.
But the numbers don't mean much to Gordon right now. He's focused on one task - helping the Spartans to their first bowl victory since 2001.
Following a recent Michigan State practice in San Antonio, Gordon talked about the bowl experience, facing Texas Tech, and what he has improved on this season.
This is your third bowl game. Do you feel this is more of a business trip, or is it part of the bowl experience to visit places like the Alamo and the Riverwalk and enjoy the town?
"During the regular season, we have class all day, then practice, then we have to go do homework. This week, we have some free time, so we do have a little time to check out the sights."
The last two bowl games, the Spartan defense has had to face back-to-back No. 1 NFL Draft picks in Matt Ryan of Boston College and Matthew Stafford of Georgia. Texas Tech presents a different challenge with their potent spread offense. How much does it help when you have so much time to prepare for a single opponent?
Playing against a spread offense can be especially difficult as a linebacker. How much of a challenge is this game going to be for you personally?
You are on pace to record a career high in tackles this season. Where do you feel like you've improved the most your junior year?
This is your third year as a starter. Do you feel like your ready to take on that leadership role going into your senior season, or do you already feel like a leader on the defense?
Has there been a moment or game this year where you feel like the defense has put everything together, or is there still that hunger where you're looking for that complete game against Texas Tech?
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