Photo Courtesy of Pat Narduzzi’s Twitter
Football is back and what’s more American than the American Flag and Oversized HD TVs and FOOOTBALL AND HOLY CRAP FOOTBALL IS BACK AND IT’S NOT THAT CRAPPY ENGLISH FOOTBALL WHICH I ALSO ENJOY BUT HOLY CRAP FOOTBALL IS HERE.
So MSU and Boise State enter the 2012 season as Connoisseurs of College Football’s Finest Trick Plays, both teams replace massive amounts of starters on one side of the ball and both quarterbacks are breaking in new Quarterbacks behind the winningest Quarterback in school history. Michigan State replaces all but 21.1 percent of their total offensive yardage from 2011 against a Boise State defense that returns just two starters. Boise State brings their high fallutin’ fancy offense to East Lansing and the authoritative MSU guide to understanding the Boise State offense exists at TOC.
With all of these changes predicting anything based on previous tendencies of the past few years seems like a fool’s errand exceptin’ for these three things. 1.) MSU’s defense is solid. 2.) Boise State is going to use that Multiple offense to attack the weaknesses of MSU. OF WHICH THERE ARE NONE. 3.) I will bet 20 internet bucks against any takers that MSU’s defense gives up a touchdown on the opening drive. It happened against 6 of 11 BCS opponents last year and while Boise State isn’t a BCS program, they sure think they are. This has always seemed like a feature/bug of Narduzzi’s style, “I give you a few points while I learn everything it is that you do, then I hold you down until the third or fourth quarter.”
On Offense MSU Will:
- Let Le’Veon Bell tote the rock to settle Maxwell down early on. If MSU has success rushing early they’ll ride that Bronco until the run gets slowed down. There’s no reason to put any pressure that isn’t necessary on Maxwell.
- MSU will rediscover the jet sweep they used to run under Treadwell back in 2010. It’s an easy way to get a rush that’s good for a few yards against a young defense.
- Use Dion Sims to give Maxwell a friendly target and provide a mismatch against BSU’s 4-2-5.
On Defense MSU Will:
- Attack, Attack, Attack. With a new quarterback, MSU will blitz early and often to apply pressure and force bad incompletions.
- Stick to their guns on defense. As Heck noted several times, Narduzzi sticks to his 4-3 no matter what. In 2009 when the 4-3 made you nuts, it didn’t matter, Narduzzi was not putting an extra DB on the field come hell or high water.
- Bend but not break. MSU has never had an issue surrendering yards between the 20s, it’s when you’re in a red zone that they really clamp down. Boise State is no different than any other high powered offense MSU plays. Keep the play in front of you and tackle well.
This game could be wild like either MSU-Wisconsin game in 2011 where two teams play 60 minutes of great football and it results in a great game or this game could be like the 2012 Sugar Bowl where it’s an exciting game played poorly by both teams. I suspect there will be a moment tonight of DERP so powerful it turns Spartan Stadium briefly into the House of 80,000 Facepalms, whether that moment belongs to MSU or Boise remains to be seen. Given the enormous question marks on MSU’s Offense and BSU’s Defense I’m going to go with an exciting game featuring an above average number of facepalms.
MSU 34 BSU 28