Spartans Need to Keep Irish One Dimensional

Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi knows Notre Dame has plenty of offensive firepower. What concerns does he have going into South Bend on Saturday?

Michigan State turned in a solid defensive performance last Saturday against Florida Atlantic. However, defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi knows Notre Dame has the players to make even a good defense look average.

"The biggest concern (I have) about Notre Dame is that they're very talented," said Narduzzi. "They're strong and physical up front, they have great skill, and they have two great quarterbacks who can throw the ball around. If they don't make mistakes, they're a 2-0 football team. They're a great offense."

While the Irish have been giving the ball away on several occasions, Narduzzi knows mistakes at the college level soon get fixed.

"I would like to say we're going to continue to get them (turnovers) and they're going to keep making mistakes, but sooner or later you fix the mistakes," remarked Narduzzi. "You just hope they don't have a clean game, but we have to force them (turnovers). We have to make it happen."

One player the Spartans defensive mastermind knows attention needs to be given is Michael Floyd.

"The big thing is to know where he is at all times," Narduzzi said of Floyd. "He's our Waldo this week. You ever read the books `(Where's) Waldo?' We have to know where he is, because he's everywhere."

Last year's battle between the Spartans and Irish has given Narduzzi a blue print to follow this season.

"They had 92 yards rushing a year ago," Narduzzi said. "We need to do the same thing. We have to make them one dimensional; we cannot let them get the run game started. If they get the run game started, then they can spread you out and throw it like they do, (and) we're going to have problems. So we have to stop the run."

While the Irish seem to have settled on a quarterback, Narduzzi knows another one is waiting in the wings.

"I think what you see on tape is that Tommy Rees is a gamer," said Narduzzi. "He seems like a smooth guy out there, and nothing gets him rattled. Even when he makes checks, he's smooth...But I think (Dayne)Crist has a stronger arm, so he scares you. I walked off that field last year saying that Crist is going to be an NFL quarterback."

Spartan Digest Top Stories