Mark Dantonio and the Michigan State football program have seen success over the past few years and the 2012 season will be another major test showing how the Spartans handle their past success with several key performers gone from the past two seasons.
In our first look at those players we feel are keys to continued success, we look at both sides of the football naming ten Spartans we feel if lost would be drastic blows to the success desired by Spartan fans across the country.
Here are two of those who will be placed in our Top 10 Indispensable Spartans for 2012.
The most indispensable members of the Spartans offense for 2012 will have the biggest shoes to fill on and off the field. Junior quarterback Andrew Maxwell will look to provide leadership as well as his on field talents this fall.
With Kirk Cousins now in Washington, Maxwell's on-field skills will be needed and Spartan fans got a slight look of what the offense would look like without him on the field during the spring game.
Over the past two years Maxwell has produced 29 completions on 51 attempts for 294 yards and one touchdown. Last season found the Midland, Michigan native in four games with solid performances against Florida Atlantic and Central Michigan where he combined to go 13-of-18 for 134 yards and his lone touchdown.
A loss of Maxwell for any extended time could hurt the Spartans chances of making a return trip to Indianapolis for the Big Ten Championship game.
You will find Maxwell in our Ten Most Indispensable Spartans as we release the next few chapters over the coming days.
For Michigan State the most indispensable member of the defense is middle linebacker Max Bullough.
Bullough, who is responsible for calling the Spartans defense, does more than just make tackles and was vital to the on-field success enjoyed by the Spartans during the 2011 season.
While many pundits will place William Gholston in this position and for good reason, questions remain as to the level of play those behind Bullough will have as they are unproven talents.