Smith hits recruiting trail during bye week

Michigan State's offensive and defensive oordinators will concentrate on sharpening the team's execution while head coach John L. Smith and much of his staff are away recruiting during the bye week. They will likely focus on the team's execution, retaining their on-field assignments and in player development over the course of the bye week.

EAST LANSING, MI) - If you think this is a week of rest and relaxation for Michigan State head coach John L. Smith and his staff during this bye week, think again.

Smith, does however, plan to take advantage of a weekend without a Saturday game day by giving his team some extra time off to get healthy.

"The first thing we try to do is give the guys a little time off, you know, to get healthy," said Smith. "That more so than anything. Then we'll get back and get working out, try to get a couple of extra days in which is always vital going into a game vs Michigan. You always want a couple of extra days practice."

Smith said that while his players will get some much needed opportunities to heal up, he personally will be wratcheting up his personal schedule, while trying to add some undecided prep players including Aubrey Pleasant of Montrose, MI, Jeff Stehle of New York and Courtney Harris of Jupiter, FL. to the Spartans 2005 recruiting class.

"That, plus the fact that we're able to get out on the road [and] able to get my coaches out [on the road and] able to get some recruiting done. We get a lot of evaluations done and [we're] able to get a lot of visits set up. So from a recruiting standpoint it's a vital week for us."

While Smith and his coaches will be criss-crossing the country in search of talent that will put the Spartans among the Big Ten's elite, they still have other objectives that they want to accomplish during the bye.

"I guess you kill a number of birds with one stone. We get healthy, get some recruiting done and I get to travel around a little bit and contact some poeple and do a couple of speaking engagements that I've kind of shirked my duty on."

Smith said, while he and many of his coaches will be hitting the road, offensive coordinator Dave Baldwin and defensive coordinator Chris Smeland won't be leaving East Lansing.

"What I'll do is keep my coordinators in this week and then we will go to the field and just concentrate on us and we'll do that without looking at the University of Michigan.

The coordinators will do much of the work of preparing the team while Smith is away. They will focus on the team's execution, retaining their on-field assignments and in player development over the week.

"Well we'll try to always do that (get better as a team) and we'll do that early on [in the bye week]," Smith indicated.

Preparation for the upcoming game against the University of Michigan will begin this weekend.

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