The week following Alabama's thrashing of Notre Dame in the National Championship Game, many hailed 'Bama's Nick Saban as the next Bear Bryant after winning three of the last four. The word "Dynasty" has been thrown around by many journalists when describing Alabama's run, and Sabans crew show no signs of slowing up. The SEC, well, they're winners of the last 7 National Championships, and both members of the 2012 National Championship Game, LSU and Alabama, hailed from SEC country. The premise of SEC football? A combination of speed and power that originates in the trenches.
Mark Dantonio, over the course of his five years, has built the Spartans on a power run game and a stellar defense, that produced the top rusher in the B1G and a top 10 defense in the country. Dantonio lost his top three juniors, RB Le'Veon Bell, TE Dion Sims and DE William Gholston to April's NFL Draft, but returns 4 of his 5 Offensive Lineman and a lot on defense including star MLB Max Bullough, most importantly defensive genius Pat Narduzzi.
Speculation has mounted on incoming freshman Damion Terry could spark a lethargic offense next season that ranked 10th in the B1G, but it can't come on account of changing their entire scheme. The new era of dual threat Quarterbacks across the country with Denard Robinson, Braxton Miller and Johnny Manziel, have many speaking of a turn towards the spread attack for the Spartans. He spoke with Spartan Nation last week realizing there could be position battle in East Lansing for next seasons Quarterback: "I'm always cheering (Maxwell) on because I want us to do well along with win," Terry said. "When I was watching Andrew, I know he was struggling a little bit even though he made a lot of good throws, but in the back of my head, I'm like, 'Yes, yes, open competition.' But that's not who I am. I'm just trying to root for him, make sure he does good and then when Connor (Cook) came in, the same thing. Everyone wants to compete, and everyone wants to play as soon as possible, but you're always rooting for your team to win. And I feel like the coaches will put the best player they believe that will do the best for the team out on the field."
|Mark Dantonio has the grounds built to keep|
Michigan State perched atop the B1G.
While this theory appears "sexy" in today's modern College Football, it should not sway Dantonio's philosophy. Terry may be the answer at Quarterback in the future, and a Quarterback with his potential could be what the doctor ordered, are focus should be completing are mission along the trenches. The defense is close, are offense lacks a dominant Offensive Line, but we're close. Teams that win and win big over the course of decades have three things in common: Offenses control the football and don't turn the ball over, great coaching and defense. Look at the modern Alabama teams, LSU, Texas teams of old, Oklahoma, these teams had those three key areas. Then look at Auburn, a one year wonder, or Oregon who couldn't handle the interior lines of Stanford in 2012 or LSU and Wisconsin in 2011. Dantonio has molded this team in the right form, and now must continue with his philosophy. Control the football, create turnovers and dominate in the trenches.
2013 will have question marks abound on the Spartans offense, but if we stick the course, develop a potent passing attack to compliment are power run and the aid of a soft schedule, the 2013 Spartans will continue their march towards the top of the B1G and beyond.