A Struggle on the Ground

ORLANDO – It was billed as a clash between two of the top running backs in the nation, but neither Michigan State's Javon Ringer nor Georgia's Knowshon Moreno found much room to run in the Bulldogs' 24-12 win in the Capital One Bowl on Thursday.

The two Doak Walker Award finalists combined for just 109 yards on the ground, less than what each has averaged per game on their own. Ringer netted just 2.3 yards per carry in the game, while Moreno managed only 2.7 per run, but chipped in with a receiving touchdown in the fourth quarter.

"They did a good job stopping the run but guys just did a good job in the second half adjusting to the things they were doing," Moreno said of his slow day on the ground.

While Georgia's failure to get the running game going didn't prevent the offense from moving the football in the second half, Michigan State's offense struggled throughout the game without its usual contribution from Ringer.

Turing the usually run-heavy Spartans offense into a one-dimensional aerial attack was the game plan from the outset for Georgia's defense, however, and linebacker Rennie Curran said it was executed to perfection.

"Really from the first play, we came out, we were fired up," Curran said. "Even in pregame warm-ups, our mind-set was to not let them run the ball, and we stuck to it."


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