Answering your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…

Malik McDowell & Riley Bullough 2016 Cotton Bowl vs Alabama.  Photo courtesy of Tom Ackerson
Malik McDowell & Riley Bullough 2016 Cotton Bowl vs Alabama. Photo courtesy of Tom Ackerson

Answering your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…

Hondo, last year (2014) Coach Dantonio mentioned frustration with how many times Delton Williams carried the ball. This year we didn’t keep the “hot back” in the game like past seasons. Coach Dantonio said that was his plan every year. Not sure if you saw it, but Gerald Holmes even complained on Twitter about his carries. It would appear that two years in a row we have issues at RB. Whose job is that and how do they fix it? Carren

That would be Coach Warner. I did see Gerald’s Twitter comments and I think he had a point, but that game was not won or lost because Gerald didn’t carry. It was lost with an offensive game plan that was stubborn and frankly arrogant. They tried to do WHAT NO ONE had done all year, because they thought they were better than they were and refused to listen to what other coaches told them and what the type of teams that had success against them had done. When MSU was clearly failing, MSU wouldn’t adjust. In this case, pride did come before this fall.

Hondo, the special teams were filthy, rotten dirty this year. Dantonio is quick to bench certain players (and covering some like Kings), so how will he fix the special teams failure this year? Gordon N.

I have no idea. I know he has to and I know what I would do, but I am unclear as to how he will fix it. I will discuss that with him in March.

Hondo, can you give me a name of an offensive and defensive player that didn’t play last year that you expect to be a monster this season? Keith McCarrick

I have said since before Cole Chewins arrived last year that he is stud. He is a super kid and player. Dantonio was quick to mention him to me a couple of weeks ago and he has a chance next year. Regardless, he is a star with a real chance of being the best player from the 2015 class when all is said and done. To be blunt, Chewins is the real deal. On defense Raequan Williams is big, fast, strong and a game changer. Shilique is a great player, but Raquan has a chance to be great: a stud game changer. Raquan has every God given tool to be one of Dantonio's best at any position.

Hondo, is it fair to say that Mark Dantonio and his staff were simply out coached in the Cotton Bowl? Crystal

Yes. Unfortunately. Bama had great talent, but so did MSU. The MSU coaching staff cost them the game.

Hondo, when is your in-depth recap of the Cotton Bowl coming out? I am holding back on commenting until I can see your analysis. Bob K.

Soon. I have watched the game 14 times and spoke with almost everyone at MSU. That last interview is going to be next week. I’ve spoken with three people from the Bama program as well. I am trying to be as thorough as possible. It is going to be brutal and honest.

Hondo, I have not heard you mention Jim Harbaugh much. I am outraged about his signing day with the celebrities, pulling scholarships and sleep over. He has made a fool of himself. I am offended and honestly outraged. Melissa

I think if his action “outraged” and “offended” you that you have a very blessed life. I don’t like it when any coach pulls offers for no reason, and I am not close enough to know if there was a reason. I know players that have left MSU that Coach D bent over backwards to help, and he took heat for their leaving and never defended himself. In fact, when I mentioned that I was going to defend him and let people know what happened he asked me not to. He said he didn’t want it to harm the youngster, even though he was being attacked. So not knowing if there was any special circumstance I am not able to comment. Secondly, I take no issue that he is making signing day big. He hasn’t beaten MSU or OSU, so this is a great chance to feed the UM hype machine when rivalry game wins aren’t there to do it yet. On another note, players de-commit all the time as well. I don’t like it when coaches or players do it, but it is part of the game and I just don’t lose sleep over it. You have to blame the system.

What is the mood of the team after the loss to Alabama? Are they mad, determined, satisfied, or something else? How are next year’s seniors doing in leading the team during the winter workouts? Thanks.�� Kevin.

I think like a fighter that gets stunned after a knockout, they felt that. They are moving away from it now, BUT what matters is if they learned from it. When I say learn from it, I mean all of them from coaches to players.

Hondo, when Dantonio's critique of Spartan Football begins here shortly, when are they going to address the coaching issues at Running Back and Special Teams? He's asking Dave Warner to do more than he has time to in calling plays and managing a rotation of RBs, and it's showed in the last couple years. Special Teams wise, 2015 had to be Dantonio's worst group overall, though there were a couple all time highlights. Why hasn't MSU hired a new RBs Coach and Special Teams head? What am I missing here? Jonnie in East Lansing

Unfortunately, people think you can just go out and hire all the coaches you want. You can hire additions quality control guys and consultants, but MSU doesn’t have an unlimited budget like Alabama does. As far as on field coaches, you can only have nine and a head coach. Dantonio would have to either fire a coach or reassign job descriptions.

There you go everyone. That is your weekly MSU football questions and answers article. Make sure you send your questions to and put in the subject line Football Q/A. Thank you.