O-line meshing as players return from injury

Jack Allen returns and starts and Spartans explore combinations at tackle with Notre Dame on the clock.

Michigan State mixed and matched its offensive line – especially the tackles – against Youngstown State, but managed to find success in the process.

"The offensive line played well," head coach Mark Dantonio said in his weekly Sunday night teleconference. "Jack Conklin had a winning performance as we categorize it. Continues to grow, he's only in his third game playing. He played right tackle and left tackle as the game transitioned on. But doing very, very well. The quarterback got hit one time – and zero sacks."

Dantonio said the offensive line helped provided balance and added that others played well to aid the cause.

"I thought Jack Allen played well," Dantonio said. "He didn't really practice, he practiced once (two weeks ago). This week he practiced the entire week, but played well at center. We continue to get great play from (Blake) Treadwell and then Dan France was very, very solid and Donavon Clark probably had his best game as to date."

Dantonio said Clark has been solid when asked if Conklin and Fou Fonoti will be the starting tackles when Fonoti is fully back from injury.

"Fou is dealing with a slight injury and then he missed a lot of summer camp," Dantonio said. "The best guys are gonna play, that's all I can say."

Dantonio added that the Spartans have options at tackle, including Dan France.

"We have the ability to move Dan France out there, and Conklin," he said. "So we really have four players who can move out there and play in that situation so we can move them around a little bit. So I think that's a positive thing. But we have to put the best players on the field and make that decision based on how they're performing game to game, I believe."

Dantonio also was pleased to get second-team players reps in the 55-17 win against Youngstown State.

"We've got some depth," he said. "Kodi Kieler played, I think he will be an excellent player for us down the line. Big, strong, 320-pound offensive tackle. He got his first taste of real time. It was important. We played our twos the entire second half and that was important for us to recognize that as we move forward."

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