Michigan State a 13 point fave at Illinois after 14-0 blanking of Purdue; MSU defense ranks #1!!!! The Enlightened Spartan: Michigan State a 13 point fave at Illinois after 14-0 blanking of Purdue; MSU defense ranks #1!!!!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Michigan State a 13 point fave at Illinois after 14-0 blanking of Purdue; MSU defense ranks #1!!!!

The 6-1/3-0 Michigan State Spartans, fresh off their blanking of Purdue, and will likely crack the Top 25 when the polls are announced,  are an early 13 point favorite at 3-3/0-2 Illinois according to the early Vegas line.  Iowa is favored by 3 home over Northwestern; Nebraska by 8-1/2 at Minnesota; Ohio State by 14-1/2 home over Penn State.

The Spartans shutout Purdue, 14-0, in what was the ugliest performance from Connor Cook this season.  Michigan State's defense gave up a few big plays between the 20s, but did not allow Purdue to get any closer than the 25 yard line all game long - that is ZERO red zone opportunities for the Boilermakers.  The Spartan defense gave up just 226 total yards, just 66 rushing yards on 34 attempts (1.9 average).  Max Bullough's stat sheet lit up like a XMas tree: 10 tackles, 2 for loss, 1 forced fumble (returned for a TD), 1 sack, and 1 QB hurry.  Nice.

Spartan RB Jeremy Langford looked very good, running for 131 yards on 24 carries (5.5 average).  State had 182 yards on the ground.  The offensive line opened up some nice holes all game long.

As for our QB, Cook wasn't close to having an INT... he wasn't close to hitting on half of his throws.  Cook looked terrible and consistently missed wide open receivers on third down.  Heck, even though the Spartan offense looked good on its only TD drive, a 9-play 73 yard drive in the 4th quarter, Cook didn't throw the TD pass... it was WR Tony Lippett throwing the pass on an end around.   Cook was 13-of-25 for 107 yards.  Before that final drive, Cook had just 33 yards passing on the day. The ES would give Cook a "D" grade for his performance on Saturday.  Two steps forward, one step back for Cook.

1st Downs1421
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
Total Yards226294
Yards per pass
Rushing Attempts
Yards per rush
Fumbles lost
Interceptions thrown

Statistically, MSU's defense is certainly the best in the nation. Through Oct 19 games, this is where Michigan State ranks nationally:

Category,  Rank,  Statistic
Total Defense, #1, 228.0 ypg
Rushing Defense, #1, 59.1 ypg
Passing Yards Allowed, #4, 168.9 ypg
Team Passing Efficiency Defense, #1, 88.41
Scoring Defense, #4, 13.6 ppg
3rd Down Conversion Pct Defense, #3, 27.3%
First Downs Defense, #1, 13.4 pg
Time of Possession, #4, 34:11

The ES has gotta print the Big Ten standings, with Michigan State on top of the Legends through the first three Big Ten games.

Big Ten - LegendsCONFOVERALL
* - Michigan State3-06-1
* - Michigan2-16-1
Big Ten - LeadersCONFOVERALL
* - Ohio State3-07-0
x - Penn State1-14-2

And, here are some nice photos by the ES of Saturday's victory over the Boilermakers.  After the first quarter, it stopped raining and turned out to be a beautiful, 55-and sunny fall game.  Indeed, the weather was nicer than the Spartan offense....

Second quarter backed up on our 10...

 Second quarter struggles...

 Beginning to see some sunlight...


 Third quarter defense bends bud doesn't break...

 4th quarter lineup for our only offensive TD...

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