If watching some of the close games Thursday night didn’t make Power Five programs take notice they shouldn’t take anyone lightly then buyer beware.
The Michigan State Spartans open the 2016 season against the Furman Paladins a member of the Southern Conference in the Football Championship Subdivision.
What should be an easy tune-up for the Spartans against a program that went 4-7 last season, leads to the Spartans Digest staff and a selected few of premium members picking the Spartans to roll to an easy win.
Here are the predictions….
Dave Berk – Publisher: Look for Dave Warner to keep it simple for Tyler O’Connor and push the revamped offensive line using the three headed running attack of LJ Scott, Madre London and Gerald Holmes to a big offensive output in the running game. The Spartans defense will be in attack mode with Malik McDowell and Riley Bullough leading the way to the Spartans first win of the season 31-6.
Hannah Hultink – Site Intern: This should be an easy game for the Spartans, with a loaded backfield and Tyler O'Connor ready to prove himself in the QB position. I predict, LJ Scott will come out as the hot back and rush 150 yds plus with at least two touchdowns. On defensive, Demetrious Cox will come to play and start off his senior season with an interception -- perhaps for a score. The Spartans will take the W with a 35-7 score.
Brianmore: The running game is strong as the offensive line exerts its will against the Furman front four. During the second period Furman's linebackers start to crowd the line of scrimmage to stop the run and O'Connor is successful passing in the 8-10-yard zone. The Spartans end up with 280 yards on the ground.
Meanwhile the MSU linebackers, led by a starting Andrew Dowell, stop the Furman running game in its tracks. On occasion, the Furman team is able to strike with a pass, but two interceptions in the secondary stop their drives.
In the end, Furman leaves East Lansing a 30-6 loser.
Off to Notre Dame.
AdCole: Although the MSU staff knows what we have in Tyler O'Connor and our passing game they are not going to give away that hidden secret until the Notre Dame game. They play it slow and to the chest against Furman and run the ball 40 times to keep the ND staff guessing and surprised about our passing game until we play them.
Our defense will obviously play a lot of man to man coverage to get the DBs ready for ND and let's our DL and LBs do their thing and wreak havoc along the line and in the backfield.
MSU is going to roll Furman 24-0
SPARTYJIMMY: I see the game against Furman as a great way to get a lot of players some PT, regardless of the score. Well see at least three QBs, three RBs and a revolving door on defense. This will be a very bland game, so as not to give Notre Dame anything usable on film. The defense will show just how tough they are this year with the new blood in helping the Spartans get their first win of the season..........
M.S.U. - 37 - Furman – 13