The State Of The Michigan State Spartan Football Program

Hondo S. Carpenter

A disappointing 2019 season came to an end in New York City for the Michigan State Spartans in late December.  Today Mark Dantonio (who has watched his program take a downward direction in the last four seasons) received his contract stated $4.3 million dollar bonus.  But that bonus doesn't make the program magically well.  There are issues inside the Duffy Daugherty Building.

Dantonio talked about the future in New York after the bowl game.  He said, "I'm always excited about the future, to be honest with you. I always look forward to the next challenge, the next goal in your life, bringing people with you. "

He went on to add, "I think that's something that you always do. I think that's a natural progression for every football coach or every CEO maybe in the country: What's next."

He also said, "I keep talking to our players about, What is next? How do you handle your challenges coming down the road for you? That's how we'll spring forward. That's always how we've done it."

The Spartans now head into an off-season that will be again be surrounded by questions regarding the future of the Michigan State coaching staff. Mark Dantonio has made no statements or changes, while numerous college football programs have.

But questions about the members of the offensive staff still remain as the Spartans continued to struggle offensively.

In the above video, Spartan Nation senior football writer Jon Schopp joins me for a frank conversation on the state of Michigan State Football.  It is thorough and fair.

Schopp recently wrote about the program, "No one who loves Michigan State and Spartan Football want to see this program take any more steps backward. Good luck finding someone who wants to place the bar for success at making a Bowl Game or being slightly better than a .500 team. You can’t say that would’ve been okay with Mark Dantonio five years ago, so what’s making it so digestible today? Is that a concession that Spartan Football is regressing back to its natural mean? Is that supposed to suggest that the true baseline for Michigan State Football is the kind of up and down, back and forth, frustration filled brand of play that fans and loyal supporters endured too much of from saying the late 80’s through the late ’00s?"

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Comments (2)
No. 1-2

I do not believe this program is satisfied with mediocrity. I’m not sure how a team/program recovers basically losing a whole recruiting class in a 4 year period and all the negativity surrounding it. It took Penn State almost 3 years to recover from NCAA sanctions. Still I think the successful plays were there, they just needed to be executed. Coach D will find a way! Who really knows what motivates a non-profit major donor. Maybe that should be the focus of your next article, at least it fits with the current narrative.


This is probably a dumb ass question but if they were to lose all their games next year would they fire Dantonio then?