TyQuan Hammock once again playing at linebacker
TyQuan Hammock is another prime example of what seems to be numerous Spartans who have changed positions this spring to better fit the team's needs.Â Or in his case moved back to an old position.
Like Dan France and Blake Treadwell, Hammock is averting to a spot where he wasn't primarily used last season. The only difference is that Hammock â€” who was recruited as a linebacker, converted to fullback last season, and now converted back to linebacker â€” is going back to a spot within the defense in which he is familiar.
He was converted to fullback about a month into last season, partly because Michigan State already had strong players at the position (like seniors Greg Jones and Eric Gordon). But now that those players are gone, the coaching staff decided it was best to put Hammock in his natural position â€” the position which he excelled during high school and was primarily recruited for by most teams.
It's a nice welcoming back for Hammock, being trusted by the coaching staff to help lead the middle of the defense.
â€œI think I built that confidence in myself and my teammates and my coaches, to let them know even though weâ€™re young as a linebacking corps, we know what weâ€™re doing out there and weâ€™re able to make plays," Hammock said.
And even though the sophomore â€” who saw action in all 13 games last season â€” has been converted once again to linebacker, he isn't ruling out wreaking havoc on special teams once again. He led the entire team in special teams tackles with 16, but whether the coaches want their projected starting linebacker to risk injury on a kick or punt return is probably a notion that is frowned upon.
Some have also questioned his weight disparity, at least in terms of going from being a bigger player at fullback to thinning out a bit to be able to be versatile as a linebacker. Hammock seems more worried about grasping the defensive schemes than maintaining his weight, saying he is already used to a strict eating regimen and will stay at his current weight throughout the summer.
The linebacking group will be one for any Spartan fan to keep a watchful eye on since there is some turmoil at the position. Whether Hammock will turn out to be as vivacious as Greg Jones was is a tall task to ask for, but he learned a lot from him in the one season they spent together. And since MSU's spring game coincided with the later rounds of the NFL Draft, Hammock's face gleamed happiness when he was told by a reporter that Jones had been drafted by the New York Giants.
â€œWas he really? I didnâ€™t know that,â€ Hammock grinned. â€œThatâ€™s good, thatâ€™s excellent. Iâ€™m actually gonna call him when I leave (the stadium), congratulate him. He worked so hard while he was here -- every offseason. For Greg to put the linebackers at Michigan State on the map, itâ€™s excellent.â€
Maybe Hammock will put the next generation of MSU linebackers on the map, too.