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Starting line up 2019e
#1
QB  Lewerke. TB. Heywood. FB Rosenthall

WR White. WR Stewart. WR  Nailor.  TE Dotson/Davis

C  Allen. G. Higby. G. Jarvis. T. Chewins. T. Reid

DE. Willekes. DE. Panasiuk. DT. Panasiuk. DT  Williams

LB. Bachie. LB. Simmons. LB. Thompson

CB. Scott. CB. Butler. S. Dowell. S. Henderson
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#2
Thanks for talking football coach!
I like the lineup overall, but I hope someone can overtake Hayward at RB. He just doesn't seem to the instincts for the position.  He is a great football player and I would love to see him used in a veriaty of roles. TE , slot receiver FB, but he not a natural RB who has the vision to find the holes, and to be honest he doesn't seem to run that hard or fall forward.
 I was pretty disappointed with gillisons body shape at TE. Seemed a lil soft in the middle for a guy everyone was saying was such a great athlete. Hope he spends the offseason getting in a little better shape.
Defense looks stacked if they can stay healthy it should be a great unit again. How we dont have the best kids in the nation on defense begging to come here recruiting wise is beyond me.  I can understand why and offensive  player wouldn't come here Wink
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#3
I see both Heywood and Jefferson as short yardage backs.  I think eventually both Collins and Williams will take over as the starters.  Bridges looked like he wanted to be somewhere else.  Heywood did show better speed even though it looked like his weight is up.  That is why I listed him as starter.  I thought the same thing about Gillison and the love handles.  I also thought he is the faster of all the TEs by far and he was an aggressive blocker.  Disappointed that the TEs were not targeted more.  Disappointed in Lombardi as well.  If Salem is going to wildcat plays this would suit Rocky better.  Just reads so slowly let him run and gun.  I thought the freshman Samac played real good and will see game reps at LT.  I think even with the loss of Willis and Layne the D will be better than last year.  Lewerkes mechanics have vastly improved but throwing short to his right still a problem.
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#4
My take...Lewerke is definitely the guy. He appears to have his swagger back. The TE's as a group are mediocre. Running back is by committee. Heyward has great versatility but it doesn't look like we have a guy back there who can take it 60yds for a score ala Langford. The offensive line is a work in progress. Who knows? Overall if the offense is 50% improved as a unit it should be enough for us to contend in the East. Why this program can't recruit a can't miss RB, QB and TE is and has been a huge mystery to me.

The defense is solid. If it is anywhere near as effective as last year and stays healthy it's likely as good as anyone's.
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#5
That O-Line, while we've been hearing talk of "much improved" and Chewie is up to OL weight (finally), I still don't trust them one bit. They are the key. Can MSU run the ball, ever, let alone with mild effectiveness? Can they pass protect? I think the WRs are there to be hit, but is there time and is the QB healthy? It MSUChick is to be believed, they set Rocky up to struggle in the scrimmage so that Brian could be the guy without public outcry. If that's true or not, it's not like either of them looked like world beaters...I still look at last year, when Lewerke was not running the ball EVER early in the year, and I wonder if he was hurt even going INTO last year.

My trust in this team is gone. I don't trust what I'm seeing (obviously that wasn't the new offense, but honestly...do you really believe we'll see a new-look offense?) and I don't buy the hype I'm reading most places. It won't be very tough for the offense to be better than last year, so save me the comparisons. Until they lace 'em up against actual competition and prove that last year was an aberration, I and most of the paying public will cross our arms and wait.

Show me. Until then, it's all just words.
Joe Polasek- Former Producer, Spartan Nation Radio
Lansing, MI
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#6
(04-15-2019, 02:20 PM)JoeP3 Wrote: That O-Line, while we've been hearing talk of "much improved" and Chewie is up to OL weight (finally), I still don't trust them one bit. They are the key. Can MSU run the ball, ever, let alone with mild effectiveness? Can they pass protect? I think the WRs are there to be hit, but is there time and is the QB healthy? It MSUChick is to be believed, they set Rocky up to struggle in the scrimmage so that Brian could be the guy without public outcry. If that's true or not, it's not like either of them looked like world beaters...I still look at last year, when Lewerke was not running the ball EVER early in the year, and I wonder if he was hurt even going INTO last year.

My trust in this team is gone. I don't trust what I'm seeing (obviously that wasn't the new offense, but honestly...do you really believe we'll see a new-look offense?) and I don't buy the hype I'm reading most places. It won't be very tough for the offense to be better than last year, so save me the comparisons. Until they lace 'em up against actual competition and prove that last year was an aberration, I and most of the paying public will cross our arms and wait.

Show me. Until then, it's all just words.

Amen.  I put absolutely zero stock in the spring game.  Shoot, they could have set up Lombardi to look like the second coming of Peyton Manning in the spring game and it wouldn't change the fact that he really didn't look all that good last season outside of the Purdue game.

Show me something against some real teams, then we can talk.
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#7
The team has much to prove. They really cannot prove a thing before September. My greatest concerns are the offensive line and the running back. In that order. The line was terrible last year. There is not a great deal of comfort with returning players when they didn’t prove themselves last year. In terms of running backs, none of them showed the heads up vision needed to succeed.

I have more faith in a healthy Lewerke and the receivers we have.

I am not sure people who are not experts will see or appreciate any changes in the offense. To casual fans, the plays are likely to look similar. The change may be in the blocking schemes involved. For example, we may employ more zone schemes and less power blocking. There is little reason to expect a change to a more explosive offense. It doesn’t match Coach D’s philosophy.

Bottom line. Coach D is playing the cards he has in the ways he knows. At stake is his legacy, if not his job. It is his gamble to make. I hope he wins.
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#8
The defense will be sound, maybe even championship level.  I agree that the season with great success  will rely on how the offense performs.  The first thing I saw on Saturday was the throwing of Lewerke.  Sharp, effortless, and decisive.  The three probable WRs Stewart, White, and Nailor, are very good and barring injury will be a threat and make defenses play honest and not load the box.  I saw that the three TEs blocked fair and at times there were multiple TEs in the formations.  Lewerke, WRs, and multiple TEs increase the possibility of an improved OL.  Having a passing attack makes the running game better.  The OC can use the formula of U of M, multiple TE and FB formations, to run or use short passing game.  Bottom line, if you can throw the ball you should be able to run the ball.  Remember they were able to run the ball more effectively in 2017 when Lewerke could throw the ball.  IF IF IF there has been some revamping to the offense where angles have been created for the OL, if there has been a effort to use screens and short flood passes, in which slows the charge of the defensive line, then the running game should improve.  Throw to run.  Lewerke can not run the ball for fear of injury.  I would like to use Lombardi too in a kind of wildcat series.  With him in the playbook is still in play and a running QB is an option for the defense to defend.
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#9
Coach, you're thinking the O Line will be improved enough to allow this? I'm not saying they won't be, but that's what we're pinning our hopes on, right? What did you see in the Spring Game that gave you hope?
Joe Polasek- Former Producer, Spartan Nation Radio
Lansing, MI
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#10
(04-16-2019, 06:15 PM)JoeP3 Wrote: Coach, you're thinking the O Line will be improved enough to allow this? I'm not saying they won't be, but that's what we're pinning our hopes on, right? What did you see in the Spring Game that gave you hope?

If the Offense had moved the ball up and down the field and scored a lot, WOULDN'T WE BE HANDWRINGING ABOUT THE DEFENSE?!? Let's not turn this into a no-win situation, guys.

Not Coach79, but the Spring Game wasn't a series of 3 and outs, or 5 and outs, like much of 2018 was. And yeah, I saw the times the D overwhelmed them and they had to reset to 1st down without punting. But there were several sustained drives, and a handful of Chunk plays (all in the passing game).  Perhaps I'm reading too much into that, but they were playing against a STOUT defense, whether it was the 1's or the 2's.  Our Second String defense could come in and improve the bottom third of the league. 

Add to this,  they did all of that WITH NO NEW WRINKLES.  Nothing of any changes in the playbook.   And we're promised there will be Some.  So I think there is room for hope.  Not doing handsprings and predicting going 15-0.  Just not expecting to struggle to score like we did in 2018.  Give that stellar, staunch D some help, and a breather now and then during the game, and it may turn out really well.
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