Scouting Report and Prediction: MSU vs. Purdue
A look at this weekâ€™s opponentâ€¦
The Spartans come in to todayâ€™s contest holding the proverbial tiger by the tail. Yes, I do know that they are playing the Boilermakers. The reason I call them a Tiger by the tail is because they are decimated by injury and havenâ€™t quit.
If anyone needed proof of the coaching talent and ability of this yearâ€™s rendition of the Boilermakers they need only look. It is testament to the coaching of Hope and the "canâ€™t quit attitude" of his players that they havenâ€™t quit with so many reasons to.
All college football fans need to stand and salute the fight and vigor of this squad.
When MSU has the ballâ€¦
For the first time this year against a quality opponent I want to the see the Spartans come into a game and drop the hammer from beginning to end. If the Spartan team from the first half of the Northwestern game or either half of the Iowa game shows up, they can and will lose.
This is a good defense for the Boilers and as I referenced above with their donâ€™t quit attitude, they are relentless.
MSU needs to start fast and simply play their game. I am not so much as concerned about the score, as I am the temp and consistency. A healthy Purdue team would give MSU all they wanted. They arenâ€™t healthy, but they are not quitters.
MSU need only impose their will and they win, but part of that imposition of mental and physical will must come with execution. I want to see Cousins avoid throwing off of his back foot and witness him stepping up in the pocket.
The Boilers have a very good attack against the run and the pass. A fumble, missed assignment, or interception will not go unpunished today. The MSU tackles have been victim to a good pass rush and they will be tested. The Purdue defense has the best player the Spartans have faced all year in Kerrigan, but his teammates are not up to his talent level.
When MSU is on defenseâ€¦
The Spartans will face a team that totally revamped their attack after their own bye week. They will try to attack the Spartans and come at them. Purdue is very well coached and they will find some weaknesses.
Again the Spartans need to play well and they will be fine, if they donâ€™t, this is a team that at this point has no business beating them, but they can. Look for the Spartans to blitz when they want to and not when they have to.
If you witness the Spartans only getting pressure when they blitz it wonâ€™t be a fun day at the High Cathedral of the Spartan Nation: Spartan Stadium. If those same Spartans are able to dictate the game and they should, there are no worries.
How will MSU respond to the bye week? Will they have a slow start? Does Purdue get some break courtesy of poor MSU execution and get the emotion necessary to win a game like this?
Will the emotion of senior day propel the Spartans or cost them? Will seeing thousands of empty seats have a poor return on the players? Will the Spartans come off the bye week sluggish?
The Spartans have a lot on the line. Not only is a Big Ten championship out there, but so is that elusive tenth win and sending out perhaps the most popular senior class in over a decade? This is a superb class of quality kids and this team respects them and wants to send them out at home right.
This team is ready and they are almost all healthy. The practices have been crisp, and Mark Dantonio has them on the verge of a complete nuclear emotional bomb. This could get ugly fast if the team mirrors the head coach with intensity today.
Dantonio is very emotional with this class and where this team is and the team has noticed and seen it.
The Spartans win today and move to the top ten in the polls on Sunday. Make it 34-17.