History, they say, repeats itself.
It was not quite four years ago that Michigan State (4-3) suffered a 38-0 blowout to Alabama (6-0) in the College Football Playoff semifinal.
This time, the Spartans were handed a brutal 38-0 mauling by the Wisconsin Badgers.
Nothing went right for Michigan State. An anemic first half set the stage for the rest of the game. ‘Lifeless’ and ‘an absolute embarrassment’ were some of the more polite descriptions of the Spartans’ offense.
Michigan State managed only 149 yards total to Wisconsin’s 402 yards total.
Michigan State had possession of the ball for 20:50 minutes; Wisconsin posted 39:10.
Michigan State had 7 first downs to Wisconsin’s 22, and a paltry 30 yards rushing to Wisconsin’s 222.
The Spartans had 2 turnovers to the Badgers’ 0.
The Spartans held Badgers running back Jonathon Taylor to under 100 yards, so there was that much to celebrate.
Otherwise the Badgers dominated the entire game, offense and defense. It wasn’t until the second quarter that Michigan State even got a first down.
The Spartans did not seem to be playing so much as slowly drowning, picked apart by the Badgers’ scoring drives. The usually reliable Spartan defense could not stop Wisconsin. And the Spartan offense cannot make up the difference.
Whatever Dantonio tried by shaking up his offensive staff, it hasn’t worked. Opinion is that the Spartans are merely a decent-to-good team, but not able to take on top-tier opponents like Ohio and Wisconsin.
Is the Dantonio era over? Another blowout like this one, and yes.
Michigan State plays Pennsylvania (6-0) on 10/26.
Photo courtesy of the Detroit Free Press