Answering Your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…

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Answering Your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…

Hi Hondo! I was just curious as to why Denzel Drone's name hasn't really come up much in the discussion of the D-Line's potential for next season? As a senior, I would think the veteran would be in the mix, but I don't hear his name as often as Calhoun, Lyles, and Heath. Any ideas as to why that is? Thanks! Best, Terence G.

You nailed it without realizing it, Terence. He is a senior and the issue is STILL potential. By this time there should have been some production. This is his campaign and the question is how good will he make it? At this point it is not about the coaches, it is about him deciding how he wants his career to end.

Hondo, this year's schedule is the worst I have seen in years. And I'm just talking about the B1G games! Isn't there any way to have some balance? Thanks, Arnold Weinfeld

Yes, but in fairness with the expansion of the B1G and the addition of a ninth conference game coming in the future, this year ended up terrible. Plus, remember that the B1G controls the conference scheduling. MSU only controls the non-conference.

Hondo, I heard you mention on the radio show about two DL injuries that could impact the team this fall. Can you elaborate? Jerry

Sure, Jerry. MSU has had two DTs this off season experience injury. One of the injured is a potential starter (Who is recovering, but lost a lot of weight) and the other a backup that they were looking to get significant reps this season. Mark Dantonio will address those injuries on Wednesday at the Big Ten media days, so I will leave any more elaboration for him then. The injury to the backup happened Friday.

After hearing you talk about the DL last Friday on the radio show Hondo, I was wondering if you expect much from Devyn Salmon, the new freshman this year. Curt


Hondo, I love it when you have the Amy Foudy lady from MSU. Do you think they are upset that the two practice fields are being turned to fake grass? Christine

Thanks, Christine. Mrs. Fouty (Amy) is awesome at what she does and a better person. I would politely correct you. They are only replacing one of the practice fields from regular grass to artificial. She is still responsible for all the fields, including the artificial.

Good morning Hondo. About two years ago you broke the story that they were going to move the tennis courts over to the tennis facility and expand the football building. Is that what is happening with the pictures of the construction you posted at the football building? Vince

Vince thanks for remembering that. The next big project after the north end zone project is to move the tennis courts over to the tennis facility. The remaining grass field will then be turned to artificial and where the tennis courts are now will be two real grass practice fields. I guess turning one of the fields artificial now (mentioned above) is technically a start, but not to be seen as the actual start. There will also be other things as part of the expansion. It isn’t all just fields.

Hondo, if you had to predict the starting lineup on the OL, what would that be? Karson

LT Fou Fonoti, LG Blake Treadwell, C Travis Jackson, RG Jack Allen, and RT Jack Conklin. I would put Jack on the LT spot, but being a youngster I don’t think Dantonio would.

Hondo, I came in late to a speech you were giving recently and you told a story about Chris Norman from the Minnesota game. Could you tell that again? Brian

Sure I can. Chris was one of the most popular players on the team last year. He didn’t have his best year and Taiwan Jones had a very good year. Taiwan had outplayed Chris and true to his “The best players play” mantra, Pat Narduzzi cleared it with Dantonio and made the switch.

That move didn’t bother the team, all players who don’t have a sense of entitlement want that. There was some frustration among the players that others who had not performed well at other positions didn’t see their backups get a shot to replace them.

At Minnesota it was the last regular season game for the senior captain Norman. Narduzzi had him scheduled to start the game. When the Spartans took the field coaches upstairs started asking, “Where’s Norman? Where’s Norman?” He was on the bench. He had sent out Jones to make the start. He thought it was too big of a game to not have the best players out there and he told me, “I wanted my teammates on a night that we needed that win to save our season to not think about Chris Norman. That game was for our fans and our team. It was about Spartans. Football is never about one player.”

Hondo, if Tony Lippett and Bennie Fowler are the starting wideouts this year, do you expect coach to hold them more accountable in 2013? Carlos

Carlos, I would argue your theory that he didn’t hold them accountable, but I can see how you think that. What I would tell you is that Tony and Bennie are on a VERY short leash in 2013. Mental mistakes and not producing will find them on the bench quick.

Hondo, after the spring you said that you thought A.J. Troup would be a starting WR this year. The other day I heard you being interviewed and when talking WR you didn’t mention him. Did something happen to make you feel that way? Eric

Yes. Troup has sustained an injury. Prior to that I expected him to compete, push, and get a starters job. I won’t get into any more detail; I will let Coach D address that in Chicago at the previously aforementioned Big Ten media days.

Hondo, I have a two part question. One, do you think Connor Cook could win the job from Maxwell who Coach D said will be the starter entering camp? Two, what does he have to do? Bill

1) Without a doubt Connor could win the job.

2) He has to clearly outplay Andrew. Dantonio does not want to face another situation with inexperienced QB play. He is already committed to getting the backup QBs more reps in 2013, but if Connor clearly outplays Maxwell he could win it. Just like Lippett and Fowler, Maxwell will face a very short leash as well.

Hondo, there has been a lot of speculation on Skyler Burkland. Do you think he plays in 2013? Kevin

No, I don’t Kevin, but I have not ruled out his returning next year yet. I know that is part of the thinking process right now.

There you go everyone, another week of your MSU FB questions and emails. Do you have one for next week? Email me at and in the subject line include FB Q/A and you must include your name!