Coordinator Scottie Hazelton Talks Ron Burton On His Staff

Hondo S. Carpenter

East Lansing, MI— Michigan State defensive coordinator Scottie Hazelton has a terrific advantage, despite the COVID-19 impact. That is having Ron Burton the Spartans legendary defensive line coach back on his staff. Hazelton talked about the benefits of having Burton on his first Spartan staff.

“Well you know I mean, they’re guys that they grind and they work hard, we have some guys that we have to develop, so I think inside, the two defensive tackles, the nose and the tackle that we had there have played a lot of snaps of football. And I think with every defensive line it’s a little bit different, you know, I mean, you can even look at the defensive end in between, Jacub (Panasiuk) and (Drew) Beesley, there’s a lot of snaps there. So I know that we lose some good players and I know that but I think that’s the case everywhere, every year, you know, you’re going to lose one or two guys and then we’ll look at the production. Well, look at the production the guys who stayed and have played a whole bunch of football that’s, that’s the one spot that you probably rotate more than any other. And so, between the guys up front, you would say, yes, we lost some, but we also have quite a bit coming back, and it gives the opportunity for the next group you know, the third teamers last year now become backups, and now they’re going to get some reps and step into it. So, I think with what we’re looking at doing is it’s going to be an okay transition, you know, sure you’d like to have everybody back and have all your pass rushers back and all your sacks back you know on the stat sheet and stuff like that. It’s finding the right guys, and really Ron’s (Burton) been a great help of finding out like, ‘Hey, this guy can play the run, this guy is really good at playing the run, this guy can run and pass rush, and trying to find those slots and then, and then on game day they’ll be about, Hey let’s try to make a good decision. If it’s third down, we want our pass rushers out there. If we get a second and long, we’re thinking pass, let’s do that if it’s a run situation, let’s look and see how much we can substitute depending on the speed of the offense we’re playing.”

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