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Brian Hoyer.


The name evokes emotions from Spartan fans that run the gamut from love to hate.


The majority says he was the reason the team came back from the dead and that his off the field influence was just as important as it was on.


Others say that his inability to complete simple passes, namely out-routes, and his tendency to lock on to one receiver regardless of the coverage actually held this team back the past two seasons despite their record.


Regardless of how you feel about the former Spartan QB, as a fan of MSU it is your duty to root for him to succeed in the NFL. He took a big step towards getting there last week in the East-West Shrine Game.


While Hoyer may go down in Michigan State lore as the Quarterback who helped bring a sleeping giant of a program back to life, NFL scouts have looked him at skeptically. Namely because of MSU’s heavy reliance on the run game this past season, and his having Devin Thomas as a main target the season before.


Hoyer did only throw nine TD’s and nine INT’s in ’08 but he was key in many situations, including single handedly keeping the team in the game against Cal late, albeit after early mistakes put them in that predicament, and orchestrating the game-winning drive against Wisconsin.


He hoped to prove scouts wrong and make it clear he could play in the league by participating in the annual East-West Shrine game in Houston, Texas.


Hoyer was widely viewed as the lowest ranked QB entering Shrine Week, behind players like Texas A&M’s Stephen McGee, Central Washington’s Mike Reilly and Missouri’s Chase Daniel. Not only did Hoyer out perform them all, he did it when no one was expecting it. One AFC scout who in the past has been very helpful in our draft coverage had this observation of Hoyer. “We really didn’t have him on our radar and we do want to add a QB. Unfortunately we have to dwell on a lot of stats because we can’t see every game of every prospect, but the stats don’t tell his story. He was accurate and was very comfortable. When you saw him with a better group of receivers he was a much better QB. He is definitely on our radar now.”


Hoyer’s East Team won the game 24-19 and the former Spartan was instrumental in the victory, leading the team on two touchdown drives. But he wasn’t just handing off the ball, Hoyer showed impressive touch completing a 20-yard pass to former Penn State Wide Receiver Deon Butler, that set up a first and goal which was finished off by Tyrell Sutton, the former Northwestern Wildcat. Hoyer also had another big pass when he eluded West Defensive End Michael Bennett and threw a 27-yard pass to Butler before the game’s Offensive MVP, former Nebraska Cornhusker Marlon Lucky, scored on a 7-yard run.


Say anything you’d like about him, but Brian Hoyer wins games. His 16-11 career record in the Green and White is as impressive as anything considering where the program was coming from. And considering where he is leaving it, it is obvious that he has done nothing but good things for MSU Football and as an academic institution.


Brian Hoyer was a great Spartan and if he keeps on impressing like he did last week he may be hearing his name called again in New York in late April. One thing is not in doubt, an NFC scout told us, “Based on what we saw he belongs in this league. Late round draft pick or free agent doesn’t really matter. There is room here for Hoyer and he showed it this week.”


We agree.Â