Sunday, September 30, 2012

Spartans drop out of Top 25, favored by 15 at Indiana

Well the Spartans certainly played far better on Saturday, despite being tripped up in a 17-16 tough loss to Ohio State.  Anytime you play the Buckeyes, you're in for a great game.  OSU's Braxton Miller is the real deal, he made it tough on a Spartan defense that held the Buckeye offense in check and out of the end zone for much of the game.

What cost MSU the game was Johnny Adams' blown coverage, giving up a 63-yard passing TD, and the defenses' inability to stop OSU and get the ball back in the final 4-minutes.  Give the Buckeyes credit, they earned the win in a game of two very different teams who were fairly evenly matched.  The biggest disappointment was the Spartan offensive line, which didn't find holes for LeVeon Bell and allowed Andrew Maxwell to be battered.   A VERY NICE SURPRISE to see the Spartan receivers finally catch the ball.  Yes, this team is improving, but it was a tough loss.

A note about the call by the refs that stopped MSU from scoring a wide open TD on the fumble recovery...  Well, we still could have scored the TD, if the offense had put it in the end zone; instead, we settled for a FG off that turnover.  Sure, the refs blew it, but MSU did have its chance to put score a TD anyways, and failed to do so.  You gotta take advantage of the turnovers and overcome adversity.  We didn't.

If MSU wants a nice bowl, or the Rose Bowl, it can't lose the rest of the year.  Improvements are still needed, particularly on the O-Line.

As for this upcoming week, the opening line out of Wynn Casino in Vegas has MSU as a 15-point favorite at Indiana. Indiana gave up - get this - 394 rushing yards to Northwestern.  The ES figures we can expect a real heavy dose of LeVeon Bell on Saturday. Penn State is favored by 4 at home over #24/#22 Northwestern. Wisconsin is favored by 14 at home over Illinois. Michigan is favored by 3 at Purdue. #12 Ohio State is favored at home by 4-1/2 over #21/#20 Nebraska.

And, predictably the Spartans fell out of the AP Top 25, but are on the door knocking to get back in.  The two losses -- to Notre Dame and to Ohio State -- were to quality opponents with the Spartans also beating Boise State.

AP Top 25
1Alabama (60)5-01500
3Florida State5-01349
6South Carolina5-01152
7Kansas State4-01123
8West Virginia4-01066
9Notre Dame4-01043
12Ohio State5-0793
14Oregon State3-0647
20Mississippi State4-0306
  • Dropped from rankings: Michigan State 20, Boise State 24, Baylor 25
  • Others receiving votes: Cincinnati 72, Boise State 53, Texas A&M 51, Michigan State 43, Texas Tech 39, Michigan 38, Louisiana Tech 37, Baylor 31, Ohio 30, Arizona State 15, Arizona 4, Miami (FL) 4, Iowa State 3, Tennessee 3

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Spartans' Bad Liver & Broken Heart

Check out the ES GameDay Preview, "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" on the Huffington Post.

Beaumont Tower webcam

FYI - if you're interested in checking out campus during game day, link to the Beaumont Tower/North campus webcam

Friday, September 28, 2012

ES Game Day Preview: Buckeyes vs Spartans

#14 Ohio State Cheatin' Buckeyes (4-0) at #20 Michigan State Spartans (3-1)
Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, MI
3:30 pm ET.  ABC-TV
Weather: 65 degrees, sunny
Sagarin Rankings: OSU #21, MSU #24
Line:  MSU favored by 3

Predictions:  ESPN Blog Bennett: MSU 19-17, Rittenberg OSU 20-17;  CBSSports/Feldman: MSU 14-10; OSU 24-23; CFN/Scout: MSU 17-13; Staff Picks: MSU; Columbus Dispatch: OSU 21-17; Detroit Freep: Rexrode MSU 17-13, Sharp OSU 10-6, Seidel MSU 10-7; FanIQ: MSU 20-14. ESPN TV Holtz & May: OSU.

Full ES Preview is on the Huffington Post

The ES predicts the same rainbow over Spartan Stadium as last week vs Eastern Michigan (see below):  Receivers catch a few, enough to move the chains, for the first time this year.  Spartan Receivers 16, Buckeye’s Braxtons 10.

ES' dead grandma & Charles Rogers on crack catch better than MSU receivers

ES is working on a Game Day preview as we speak; the nuts and bolts will be at the Huffington Post.  In the meantime, the ES was asked to comments on the upcoming matchup between our Spartoonies and the Buckeyes.  Here's a hint, with comments about our struggles vs Eastern:

"EMU didn’t do anything. Rather, the main issue with Michigan State is its receiving corps.  In the past two games – Notre Dame and Eastern Michigan – there have been a DOZEN dropped passes… in each game.  I mean, right in the receiver’s hands.  My dead grandma could catch those passes. Former Spartan receiver Charles Rogers could still catch those passes, even if he was on crack and dragging his seven illegitimate kids behind him.  For the most part, Maxwell HAS hit these guys in stride, beautiful passes (his best game so far was against Notre Dame), only for these lanky wideouts to drop them, doing Maxwell no favors.  These drops have killed drives, not allowed Bell to break out, and asked the defense to step up after giving up poor field position..."

For the full rant, visit Buckeye Battle Cry HERE.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Blogging to the masses

Buckeye Battle Cry and the Huffington Post have asked for the ES to chime in on this weekend's Buckeye-Spartan tilt.... this moves the needle to a 9 out of 10 on the Herbstreit Meter. Hopefully we can nail Herbie in his Buckeye Can by Saturday nite....

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Spartans-Buckeyes a TOSS UP in Vegas as Game Day comes to town

The early, early line out of Vegas has next Saturday's MSU-Ohio State tilt anywhere from a Pick 'Em to MSU as a 1-1/2 pt favorite.  Ugh.  Other Big Ten matchups are: Penn State by 2-1/2 at Illinois, Iowa by 6 at home vs Minnesota, Northwestern by 14-1/2 pt fave at home over Indiana, Purdue by 18 at home over Marshall, Nebraska is favored by - get this - 11-1/2 at home over Wisconsin.

MAKE SOME NOISE... Get out your whistles & horns, ESPN Game Day is coming to East Lansing.  Lee, Kirk and the boys will be in town for the Spartans vs Buckeyes showdown; I guess MSU has a 2-3 record when Game Day is in EL. 

As for the polls... well, the coaches obviously didn't see the EMU game, as they jumped the Spartans up two notches to #18; MSU is #20 in the AP Poll.

AP Top 25
1Alabama (59)4-01499
3LSU (1)4-01346
4Florida State4-01340
6South Carolina4-01147
7Kansas State4-01067
9West Virginia3-01045
10Notre Dame4-01003
14Ohio State4-0633
18Oregon State2-0451
20Michigan State3-1348
21Mississippi State4-0246
24Boise State2-1114
  • Dropped from rankings: Michigan 18, UCLA 19, Arizona 22
  • Others receiving votes: Northwestern 89, UCLA 79, Michigan 44, Ohio 40, Virginia Tech 26, Arizona 17, Iowa State 16, Wisconsin 13, Oklahoma State 12, Texas A&M 11, Texas Tech 10, Cincinnati 10, Tennessee 10, Arizona State 8, Louisiana Tech 7, Purdue 5, Miami (FL) 1

Three recommendations to correct the Spartan passing game... before it's too late

Bennie Fowler just can't catch
So, the ES was saying in jest earlier this week, "shoot we only scored 3 against Notre Dame.  How can we be favored by 32 against Eastern?" 

Umm, truer words were never said.  Michigan State limped out of Spartan Stadium with yet another pathetic receiving display in a 23-7 victory over lowly Eastern Michigan.  If you want to call THAT CRAP we saw on Saturday "receiving."  This MSU team doesn't deserve to be considered top 25 at this point.

Spartans dropped another dozen passes, seven of which we counted in the first half.  Folks, this ain't the Fighting Irish we were playing.  It was the Fighting Eagles.  It got to the point where we fans were pleading not to even throw the ball anymore, because we knew it would be futile.  The boo-birds were deafening at half time.  The receivers have no confidence.  None.

Spartan receivers Tony Lippett and Bennie Fowler should be benched.  Period.  Even Nick Hill dropped a punt and was replaced by LeVeon Bell (now, that was a stupid idea, putting our best offensive weapon at risk in the return game).  So, here are three recommendations for Dantonio if the Spartans are to have a chance the rest of the year.
  1. Run a goal line offense the entire game.  Get rid of the receivers, bring in a few extra lineman and tight ends for blocking, and just have Andrew Maxwell hand the ball off to LeVeon Bell.  It will be a messy, ugly rugby scrum of a game, but we'll move the ball.
  2. Switch the offense to a wishbone.  Connor Cook has more mobility, and use him as an option quarterback with the Spartans pitching and running the ball on every down, with a very, very,  infrequent, occasional pass to Dion Sims (the only guy on offense who CAN catch, with 6-112 and a TD vs Eastern).   
  3. OK, BACK TO REALITY.  Let's have our DBs play double-duty.  Pull Lippett and Fowler, and replace them with Isaiah Lewis, Johnny Adams, or Darquize Dennard.  Seriously, this is a viable option and at least we know our DBs can catch. 
Something has got to be done. The stark reality, and the enormity of the problem with the receivers has hit the coaches.  Dantonio said, ""You have to catch the ball. Throwing and catching. If there's nothing wrong with the route and the ball is there you have to catch it."  Offensive Coordinator Dan Roushar said, "I don't know if it was seven or eight drops in the first half, but that's not going to help us win any games around here...  There is a lack of execution and maybe a lack of confidence."  And, from the man himself, who dropped passes and fumbled, WR Bennie Fowler: "Maxwell is getting the ball out there we just have to continue finishing the play. If we finish those plays then we will get the results we want."

I don't care if you are playing pee-wee football, badminton, kayaking, or playing college football - teams are supposed to get better as the season progresses.  Said Roushar: "“I don’t think we made any progress at all."  

Yeah, umm, time to bench Fowler and Lippett.  Maybe they can watch and learn.  The Spartan offense just can't afford it otherwise.

On the positive side, the Spartan defense played fantastic once again, holding EMU to just 183 yards of total offense, and 46 on the ground.  Indeed, Eastern's best play, a beautiful 23 yard touchdown pass on an acrobatic catch, was something Spartan receivers should play on their DVR over and over again to watch how to catch a football.  Although EMU was leading 7-6 at half, that was their last gasp.

LeVeon Bell ran for 253 yards on 36 carries, and ran around, through, and over EMU all day.  At least we know what we need to do on offense the rest of the year if we are to even have a chance in the Big Ten. 

Saturday, September 22, 2012

RANT coming forthwith

ES shall provide a very lengthy rant about the brutal Michigan  State receiving corps, and innovative ideas to fix things here on Sunday... At least we beat EMU, all hail LeVeon Bell!

ES Game Day: Spartans vs Eagles

#20/21 Michigan State Spartans (2-1) vs Eastern Michigan Eagles (0-3)
Sagarin Ratings:  MSU #27, EMU #159
Saturday, September 22. 3:30 pm ET.
Weather @ kickoff: Showers, 58 degrees.
Line: MSU by 32.

Predictions: CFN/Scout: MSU 45, EMU 7.  BTN: MSU 48, EMU 3.  Freep: MSU 34-3/MSU 52-10/MSU 38-7.  DetNews:  MSU 45-10.

ES sez:  MSU 45, EMU 0.  See ya next week for the Buckeyes!

ES pre-Game Day preview vs EMU

Well, sorry, but the ES is a bit bored by the match-up against Eastern Michigan, in the cold and rain tomorrow.  The ES will publish a more indepth write up... but MSU only scored 3 points against Notre Dame, and yet the Spartans are favored by 32 against EMU?  Ouch, guess the Eagles/Hurons are pretty bad.

ES sez: MSU 45, EMU 0.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Spartan offense blows chunks, favored by 32 over EMU

Wow, that sucked. Only 3 points out of the Spartan offense vs the Irish? 237 total yards???? Terrible.

Dantonio didn't have the team ready... That wasn't Alabama we played, but we did our best to make the Irish look like the Tide. But, in addition, the receivers just flat didn't execute. We lost count of the dropped passes after 10; it was too bad, because Maxwell actually played well. That's not preparation, it is just poor play. Wide receivers play the game to catch footballs -- that's what they do. It killed all of our drives, and it was consistent all game long. The receivers are a real problem. I don't see #14 Tony Lippett starting the rest of the year. He was the biggest problem, he dropped 7 -- SEVEN -- passes. It was brutal - He SUCKED. It was fitting, the final play by the MSU offense was about a 30 yard sideline pattern to him, and like all game long it went right through his hands.

There's only so much you can ask of a defense and a QB. Laying an egg on national television stinks. Oh well.

MSU is now down to #20/#21 in the polls. Despite the loss, the Spartans are favored by 32 1/2 over Eastern Michigan this week.

And, Rittenberg/Bennett at ESPN still pick MSU to the Rose Bowl, but notes the void of good teams in the Big Ten. The bloggers say: "All Saturday did was make the picture much cloudier, as the team we've been pegging for the Rose Bowl -- Michigan State -- had a dreadful performance against Notre Dame." Further, "Well, since no other team has taken the bull by the horns, we might as well stick with our preseason pick of the Spartans winning the Big Ten..."

Truer words never were said. Hopefully, that crap was an aberration.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Huffington Post carries ES Game Day of MSU v ND

The Huffington Post carried the ES Game Day preview of the Michigan State Spartans vs the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. ES says MSU 27, ND 13.

"Gotta love the life of being a Michigan State Spartan... There ain't nothing like taking on the Irish Catholics under the lights, on national television, in front of a prime-time audience, and especially after a recent history of kicking their butt (10 out of the last 15 appearances).

The ES looks forward to the second night game of the year to watch the BEST Spartan defense in a generation. But, is it good enough to make up for a Spartan offense whose passing-game has been, for the most part..." Full blog preview

The Game:

#10 MSU Spartans (2-0) vs #19/20 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (2-0).
Saturday, September 15. 8 pm.
Weather @ kickoff: CLEAR and CRISP, 64 degrees.
Line: MSU by 5-1/2.

ES PREVIEW via The Huffington Post.

Nice writeup today by the Freep, proclaiming Spartans as "Best Football in the Big Ten." Another eye-opener from LSJ about MSU's lock-down corners. Interesting take about the Spartans from the Sportsaholic.


Friday, September 14, 2012

ES Game Day: #10 Spartans vs #20 Irish

#10 MSU Spartans (2-0) vs #19/20 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (2-0).
Saturday, September 15. 8 pm.
Weather @ kickoff: CLEAR and CRISP, 64 degrees.
Line: MSU by 5-1/2.

ES PREVIEW via The Huffington Post.

Nice writeup today by the Freep, proclaiming Spartans as "Best Football in the Big Ten." Another eye-opener from LSJ about MSU's lock-down corners. Interesting take about the Spartans from the Sportsaholic.

ES sez? MSU 27-ND 13. I have been asked and have submitted a writeup about the whipping to the Huffington Post - will link to it when they post; should be no later than breakfast on Saturday morning. Pour yerself a Bloody, and point your URL over here for a skinny on the game. GO GREEN!

Big Ten Network at Peanut Barrell... NOW

UPDATE: So, as the ES wuz eating inside around 1 pm, the BTN was filming on the patio outside. Joe was wearing his best Sunday dress, and instead was covered by WILX, local TV-10. Maybe BTN will be back later, but it is a beautiful day, 70 degrees and sunny here in EL and filming outside makes very good sense....

ES is in the Peanut Barrell right now. Joe, owner, said the Big Ten Network should be here any minute to cover their Tailgate 48 show. They confirmed last night, but called him two weeks ago. Watch for updates and photos, Spartan fans. (The show will be aired next week before EMU game).

Thursday, September 13, 2012

LIttle Giants or Major Butt-kicking? Predictions are in...

Early discussion and prognostications are blowing the winds in favor of Michigan State in their annual tilt vs the ND Irish, under the lights, 8 pm in East Lansing on ABC.
  • ESPN/Rittenberg - MSU 17-10. "Michigan State's defense has been as advertised, and coordinator Pat Narduzzi told me this week that the unit is nowhere near its potential."
  • ESPN/Bennett - MSU 21-17. " The Spartans' D is just better, however, and creates one score off a turnover. Bell does the rest with two touchdowns."
  • CFN/ - MSU 27-17. " This is when Michigan State starts to get the national respect it should’ve received after the Boise State game."
  • - MSU 23-14. "Curious to see if Irish remain in the nation's Top 10 in turnover margin after this road trip. Doubt it."
  • - MSU 24-16. "We don’t have much confidence in the Irish offensive line that was able to carve out just 52 rushing yards against Purdue last week."

ES will have his Game Day prediction up tomorrow... it's not who is gonna win, but by how much? Is this a 34-31 heart stopper or is it 31-14 blood fest? Methinks the latter...

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Spartans favored by 3 over Notre Dame

The early line out of Vegas has the Michigan State Spartans favored by a FG (3 1/2) over Notre Dame. The rats from Ann Arbor are favored by, gulp, 45 over UMass. Northwestern by 4 at home over Boston College. Purdon't by 23 at home over Eastern Michigan. The Buckeyes by 17 1/2 at home over the University of California Golden Bears. Minny by 3 at home over Western Michigan. Wisky by 14 at home over Utah State. Nebraska by 24 at home over Arkansas State.

Spartans whip Chips, move to #10 and lead a sucky BigTen

Michigan State totally dominated Central Michigan on Saturday, 41-7. The ES was in Seattle visiting his dad for his 70th birthday, so he missed the game in person, but saw the first half on the tele.

That was enough. What a butt-kicking. The Spartan defense again shined, allowing just 245 total yards, 72 on the ground. And, so far this year, the Spartan defense has not allowed a TD - the Chips scored as the game was ending on an INT of backup Connor Cook. Holding any opponent's offense scoreless in their own stadium is damn impressive. Defensive stud Will Gholston had the only sack, but he broke up a pass and hit CMU's Radcliff a few times. The Spartans held CMU to a ridiculous 17-of-38 passing (45%). On offense, the first half was fine - good return game, defense holding CMU allowed for great field position. Andrew Maxwell, however, threw a few bad throws, including one right into the hands of CMU safety Lorenzo White (yes, he is the son of OUR MSU Lorenzo White). Junior, unlike his daddy, dropped it so it was not an INT but should have been. Maxwell still has some work to do -- but he threw some great passes in the second half (as seen on MSU's game video).

At this point, Michigan State's national ranking in defensive categories is sparkling.
  • Total Defense: 225.5 ypg (#8)
  • Rushing Defense: 54.5 ypg (#11)
  • Pass Defense: 171.0 ypg (#27)
  • Pass Efficiency Defense: 78.17 (#5)
  • Scoring Defense: 10.0 ppg (#12)
After a very embarrassing weekend for the Big Ten, Michigan State looks at this point to be really the only decent Big Ten team with bowl eligibility. Michigan State moved up to #10 in polls, and as we were saying last night over some vino and appetizers - that's about where we want to be... no need to get on the map any higher yet. Let's just take care of the G*ddam Catholics next week. Should be fun. At this point, only three Big Ten teams ranked - and the ES can't figure out the varmints at #17 after their annihilation to Alabama followed up by a squeaker against a poor, and undermanned, Air Force Academy.

AP Top 25
1Alabama (48)2-01486
2USC (8)2-01414
3LSU (4)2-01404
5Florida State2-01160
8South Carolina2-01025
9West Virginia1-01017
10Michigan State2-0995
12Ohio State2-0772
13Virginia Tech2-0734
15Kansas State2-0714
20Notre Dame2-0310
25Brigham Young2-0110
  • Dropped from rankings: Arkansas 8, Wisconsin 13, Nebraska 16, Oklahoma State 18
  • Others receiving votes: Boise State 106, Arkansas 79, Nebraska 79, OREGONST 77, Mississippi State 70, Baylor 54, Wisconsin 44, ULMONROE 23, Ohio 17, Georgia Tech 15, Oklahoma State 13, South Florida 12, ARIZONAST 10, IOWAST 5, NORTHWSTRN 5, UTAHST 1, North Carolina 1

Friday, September 07, 2012

ES Game Day: Michigan State at Central Michigan

#11 MSU Spartans (1-0) at Central Michigan Chippewas (1-0)
September 7, 2012. 3:30 pm
Weather @ kickoff: 65 degrees, sunny, windy (17 MPH)
Line: MSU by 21

Jeff Sagarin has the Spartans ranked #22 (and Boise ranked #6???) and the Chippewas ranked #121; according to Sagarin, MSU should win by 18 in Mt. Pleasant. The ES has an abbreviated Game Day, as he is tied up through the weekend -- and actually cannot go to this exciting matchup. But, the ES took a couple of pics of Kelly/Shorts Stadium, which added 3,500 seats for their "big game." Look at the shots below. That said, some previews:

ES Prediction: ES thinks that CMU will get into the end zone... once; and so will the Spartan defense. It's tough to think that a Spartan team holding a good, ranked Boise to 13 points will allow that many against CMU; and that a CMU team giving up 27 to SE Missouri St will allow less than 30 by the Spartans. CMU does have the better quarterback... but that's about it.

ES sez: Make it MSU 38, CMU 10.


Other interesting notes include: 1) the Spartans' plan to add an $18 million addition to the north end zone of Spartan Stadium, just a year after adding $10 million in scoreboards and reconstructing the area. It is amazing what winning will do, just plowing more money into football, even though Munn Ice Arena needs a minimum $15 million in mandatory renovations to the ice rink (federal law regarding large freon units). And, 2) former Spartan coach John L Smith has filed for bankruptcy.

Kelly/Shorts Stadium - click on photos to zoom in.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

MSU at #11 in both polls

Just on the outside lookin' in - your Michigan State Spartans are now up to #11 in both polls, the AP and USA Today/coaches polls. MSU is a 24-pt fave at Central Michigan this week.

Here is the AP Poll:

AP Top 25
1Alabama (45)1-01481
2USC (11)1-01435
3LSU (4)1-01382
6Florida State1-01135
9South Carolina1-0980
9West Virginia1-0980
11Michigan State1-0915
14Ohio State1-0634
15Virginia Tech1-0604
18Oklahoma State1-0558
21Kansas State1-0339
22Notre Dame1-0198
  • Dropped from rankings: Boise State 24
  • Others receiving votes: Boise State 79, Tennessee 73, Brigham Young 63, North Carolina 48, Baylor 38, Utah 34, Washington 15, Georgia Tech 14, Ohio 10, TEXSTATE 10, Missouri 7, Texas A&M 5, South Florida 5, UCF 4, Mississippi State 3, Auburn 3, Cincinnati 2

Sunday, September 02, 2012

MSU Spartans favored by 24 at CMU

According to the Wynn Casino in Las Vegas (via Vegas Insider), the Michigan State Spartans are a hefty 24-point favorite at Central Michigan this Saturday. Notre Dame is favored by 2 TDs (14-1/2) at home over Purdue; Wisconsin is favored by 8-1/2 traveling to lovely Corvallis, OR, to take on Oregon State; Iowa is favored at home by 4 over Iowa State; Nebraska is a 5-pt fave at UCLA; at home, Northwestern is a 3-pt underdog to upstart Vanderbilt; Arizona State is favored by 1 at home over Illinois; Ohio State is favored by 16-1/2 while hosting Central Florida; Virginia is favored by 9-1/2 at home over Penn State (oh, how the mighty have fallen); Indiana is a once-in-a-decade road favorite, this time at UMass; and, Michigan can lick their wounds at home, returning from their whipping to 'Bama as a 3-TD favorite at home over the U.S. Air Force Academy.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Spartan defense shuts down Boise, 17-13

What a wild night, and winning ugly is still winning. It was the Michigan State Spartan defense that kept the offense in the game, stopping the Boise State offense from capitalizing on four MSU turnovers - and three Andrew Maxwell INTs.

The good: The Spartan defense, though not getting to Boise State QBs, completely shut down the Broncos, holding them to 37 yards rushing and just 206 total yards. The Broncos scored more on defense (7 pts) than on offense (6 pts). Le'Veon Bell bolted into the national spotlight, with an amazing 210 yards rushing on 44 carries -- the Spartans just turned to him time and time again as the game wore on. The dude was a workhorse. Dion Sims at TE bailed out Maxwell on a beautiful catch late in the game to set up the go-ahead TD by Bell. MSU outgained the Broncos 461-206 in total yards, but it was the defense and Bell who stole the show.

The bad: Let's be honest, Maxwell (22-38-248-3) didn't play well. Period. He missed open receivers and the three INTs should have been six if the Bronco defense used enough stick-'em. Some weren't his fault, with the Spartan wideouts dropping plenty of balls... including one right into the hands of Boise LB Jeremy Ioane, who returned it for six points. But, another Maxwell interception was a poor pass that killed a drive deep in Boise territory, and worth at least three points. Maxwell and his WRs needs lots of work; that type of performance won't win championships.

The weird: The new scoreboards were so bright, they were almost blinding. In addition, there were plenty of errors on the stats throughout the game - incorrect downs, yards to go, and total yards (which showed for Boise 37 rushing, 269 passing, and 206 total yards... ummm, do the math). Scoreboards need some work, too. Not sure if the ES likes the new scoreboards at night, kind of ruined the homey atmosphere. They are cool looking, but the stats aren't correct and they are just so damn bright.

The ES predicted 24-13... and it almost was, as the Spartan's should have punched it in from the Boise three yard line instead of kneeling down on the game's final play. There's plenty to work on for the Spartan offense, but the Big Green is 1-0 and certain to move up in the polls, and will leapfrog over Michigan after the rodents get their butts kicked by Alabama today.

Below: here's Le'Veon Bell getting the handoff as he heads into the end zone for the winning Spartan TD.

Watching Michigan getting killed by Alabama

It's beautiful. Simply a thing of beauty, right now, watching the Michigan Loserines get their butts kicked. On national television, at Texas Stadium. It's 21-0 Alabama, and not even the end of the first quarter. The "mighty" Denard Robinson hurt his own shoulder, and can't even last a quarter in one piece. Brady Hoke looks shell-shocked. When will the WalMart Wolverines learn that Denard is just a poor quarterback against good competition; sure, he mops up the sisters of the poor, but against good defenses (Michigan State, for instance), he gets frustrated, has just gotten pounded and hurt. And against Alabama, they're playing the best - this ain't no surprise.

I am laughing so loud it hurts. This is a complete embarrassment for the vermin of Ann Arbor. Let's see how this turns out, how long until the Michigan faithful make for the exits. At this rate, I give it half-way through the third quarter.