Badgers expect Stanton to play

Wisconsin prepared this week as if Michigan State's sophomore signal caller would participate

EAST LANSING, Mich.—When Drew Stanton took command earlier this season, Michigan State's offense took flight. After he separated his shoulder in the second quarter against Michigan two weeks ago, it sputtered.

So it follows that the Spartans were excited to hear MSU coach John L. Smith say this week that his sophomore signal-caller will return this season.

Smith tabbed next Saturday's game at Penn State as Stanton's probable return date. His participation this Saturday afternoon against the Badgers was termed "highly unlikely."

Wisconsin's reaction? He will play.

"I've told our guys that he's playing. I really believe he is going to play," Badger defensive coordinator Bret Bielema said. "I think he will play. I think any time you put a team in a position that they are in right now where they need three wins to get to a bowl game, to ensure a winning season… I think it's every reason in the world for that kid to come back in as fast as he can."

Michigan State's probable starting quarterback remains senior Damon Dowdell.

"I don't think you prepare for a person, you prepare for a scheme," UW secondary coach Ron Lee said. "We have to prepare for the offensive scheme regardless of who is running it. There may be some things that they may not do when [Stanton] is not in there but they still have 10 other guys that are going to run their scheme. We have to prepare for what they do."

"For the most part they are similar," Lee said of Stanton and Dowdell. "I think the Stanton kid, it seemed like he was a little bit quicker than the other young man but they are very similar."

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