Dantonio Comments on Scrimmage

Following Sunday's second jersey scrimmage, head coach Mark Dantonio was happy about how his team responded.

Sunday's 78-44 jersey scrimmage victory had Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio excited about his team's defensive performance.

"Our intensity level was very good throughout the scrimmage," said Dantonio. "We're really excited about the way the defense played this afternoon. The first-team defense looked very sharp, pressuring the quarterback, running to the football and tackling in space very, very well. The defense got off to a quick start and really took control after the big pick by Tony Lippett that he returned for a touchdown. Defensively, Max Bullough played very well. From ground level, it sure looked like Max made a lot of plays. Jeremy Langford (six tackles, including one for a 3-yard loss, and one pass break-up) made some plays too (for second-team defense).

While the defense received a lot of praise, Dantonio stressed the importance of the offense to eliminated costly errors.

"Offensively, we can't beat ourselves," said Dantonio. "Penalties really put us behind the eightball. Offensively, we must eliminate the unforced penalties. Collectively, the tailbacks all played pretty well. They ran hard, broke a couple of nice runs and took care of the football. With windy conditions like today, the receivers need to catch the ball on a more consistent basis. The quarterbacks threw crisp passes right on the money, but dropped passes killed some drives. The balls will flutter some in these windy conditions, but the receivers have to make the play.

Overall the Spartans head coach was happy with how his teams came out and competed.

"We thought our guys came out here with a purpose today," said Dantonio. "The guys played with intensity and toughness. We got 50-to-60 snaps each for the ones and twos and got another 40 snaps for the threes, so we got a lot accomplished.

"We're really pleased with the attitude of our football team. You're never going to be perfect, but you keep striving for perfection. We're very excited about our toughness and how hard our guys play. With our players' willingness to work, the execution will come."

Sunday's scrimmage placed the Spartans inside Spartan Stadium for the first 105 plays of the day's 183-play scrimmage. Dantonio liked what he saw out of the new field installed after this summer's U2 concert and described it as "firm and fast" as well as looking and playing great.

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