MSU’s Mark Dantonio Steps Down. Winningest Football Coach In Program History!

February 5, 2020

Reposted from MSU Athletics Website —

EAST LANSING, Mich. – After a storied 13 seasons as head coach of the Michigan State football program, Mark Dantonio announced his decision to retire on Tuesday, Feb. 4. Dantonio finishes his career with a record of 114-57 in East Lansing, 132-74 in 16 seasons overall. During his time at the helm of the Spartan program, Dantonio compiled an impressive list of accomplishments including three Big Ten Championships, two victories in the Big Ten Championship Game, victories in the 2014 Rose Bowl and the 2015 Cotton Bowl, and an appearance in the 2015 College Football Playoff, finishing his career as the winningest football coach in Michigan State history.

Mike Tressel will serve as acting head coach while a search is conducted to find Dantonio’s replacement.

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“Today marks one of the most difficult decisions that I have ever made here at Michigan State,” said Dantonio. “I would first like to thank our fans, alumni, and our administration; both past and present staff and especially our current and past players and coaches for all their support, hard work and dedication over these past 13 years. You have truly helped make my dreams come true.

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MSU’s Spartans Can Salvage Dismal Season With A Pre-New Years Day Game In The Pinstripe Bowl.

December 27, 2019

By Tony Dixon, for COLLEGE FOOTBALL WRAP-UP(c)

Ypsilanti, MI —

The Spartans of East Lansing (6 – 6, 4 – 5 Big Ten) have certainly had an up and down season so far, but can put this year to rest with a positive spin, if they can turn aside the hopes of Wake Forest (8 – 4, 4 – 4 ACC).

MSU picks up the torch that has been dropped by the other Michigan based college football teams; Hope, Concordia-AA, Ferris St.*, Central Michigan and most recently Eastern Michigan, who all dropped their bowl or playoff games. (*Ferris St. did win their first playoff game, but dropped the second game.)

In Wake Forest’s Demon Deacons, the Spartans will find a foe that has a capable offense, two near 1,000 yard receivers and a chance to win nine games for the first time since 2007. But, much like MSU, this season could have been a lot better that it turned out for the Forest, their season ending loss to Syracuse is still a sore point.

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They will be missing their true thousand yard receiver, Sage Surratt (66 catches, 1001 yards and 11 TDs), but Kendall Hinton (70, 953 and 3 TDs) is a still a weapon that the Spartan’s defense will have to keep in check. QB Jamie Newman (2,693 yards, 23 TDs and 10 INTs) leads a potent offense and should have a number of players ready to assist in the absence of Surratt. Running backs Cade Carney (556 yards, 5 TDs) and Kenneth Walker (555 yards and 4 TDs, including a long of 96 yards) will keep the pass rush honest.

MSU will counter with an offense that is led by QB Brian Lewerke (2,759 yards, 16 TDs and 12 INTs.) who will be trying to locate Wide Receivers Cody White (58/825, 5TDs) and Darrell Stewart Jr., (47/694, 4 TDs). Running back Elijah Collins leads the MSU rushing attack (892 yards, 5 TDs), but the next runner with over a 100 yards is…the QB Brian Lewerke! The Spartan’s offense has been much maligned but have averaged 22 PPG vs the 23 PPG that their defense has surrendered. To give credit where due, the defense did run into a few buzz saws during the Big Ten season that included losses to Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin and U-M.

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The stats show an edge to the Demon Deacons who average 33 PPG while giving up 29 PPG as well as in Total Offense with a 473 YPG average. The Spartan’s defense which averages 319 YPG will be tested throughly. But, there is a quirk that both teams will face…both appear to be first half teams, they score most of their points in the first two quarters. MSU only scored 35 points total in the 3rd quarter for the season. So maybe a good, paint peeling halftime speech will be needed, if the Spartan’s are behind or even ahead at the half.

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Tony Dixon is a Co-host for The College Football Wrap-Up(c), MISPORT-TV’s original content vehicle that reviews the past week’s college football games played by Michigan based colleges and universities across all divisions and conferences. The show also utilizes the TPR(c) (Team Performance Rating) to measure a team’s performance in the past game and also to quantify it’s performance over the seasons games. The teams are then ranked according to their TPR number, the higher the number, the stronger the performances.

MSU Overcomes Indiana’s Upset Plans, Escapes With 40 – 31 Victory

September 28, 2019

From MSUSPARTANS.COM, via AP/Noah Trister

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Matt Coghlin made a tie-breaking 21-yard field goal with 5 seconds remaining, and No. 25 Michigan State beat Indiana 40-31 on Saturday.

After Coghlin’s kick gave the Spartans (4-1, 2-0 Big Ten) a 34-31 lead, Indiana tried to lateral its way down the field on its final offensive play, but that resulted in a fumble that Michigan State recovered for a touchdown.

Brian Lewerke threw for 300 yards and three touchdowns for the Spartans, who held off the upset-minded Hoosiers (3-2, 0-2). Michael Penix Jr. returned for Indiana after missing the previous two games with an undisclosed injury – and he gave the Spartans fits, completing 20 passes in a row during one stretch.

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MSU Puts Together Strongest TPR(c) Point Performance (15.5), Makes Dantonio All-Time Victories Leader In MSU History!

September 21, 2019

From MSUSPARTANS.COM, Via Associated Press, By John Jackson

EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Brian Lewerke had three touchdown passes, Elijah Collins added a rushing TD and Michigan State bounced back from a stunning loss a week ago for a 31-10 victory over Northwestern on Saturday. The win was the 110th for coach Mark Dantonio at Michigan State, which makes him the winningest coach in program history. Dantonio, who had been tied with Duffy Daugherty, is 110-52 in 13 seasons.

Lewerke completed 18 of 31 passes for 228 yards and Collins had 76 yards rushing on 17 carries as the Spartans (3-1, 1-0 Big Ten Conference) snapped a three-game losing streak against the Wildcats (1-2, 0-1).

Michigan State lost 10-7 to Arizona State last week after an apparent game-tying field goal was negated by penalty.

Northwestern had its eight-game winning streak in Big Ten regular-season games snapped. The Wildcats had won 15 of 16 regular-season conference games.

[MSU’s  victory marked it’s highest TPR(c) scoring total (15.5 points) in the 1+ year of the ratings system. It was also the 2nd highest point total, behind Hope’s (20 point) performance last week against Defiance (OH) – – Editor]

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