Michigan State Football Update: Defense Wins Second Spring Jersey Scrimmage

Tyler O'Connor 2015 spring game.  Photo courtesy of Mark Boomgaard
Tyler O'Connor 2015 spring game. Photo courtesy of Mark Boomgaard

Defense Wins Second Spring Jersey Scrimmage

The Spartans scrimmaged for two hours in Spartan Stadium on Saturday.

Mandatory photo credit: Matthew Mitchell, Michigan State Athletic Communications

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Under sunny skies and temperatures in the low-70s, Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio sent his team through a 121-play “controlled” scrimmage on Saturday in Spartan Stadium, as the Spartans completed the 12th of 15 allotted spring practices.

With the score tied at 30, the scrimmage headed into overtime, where the defense recorded an interception on the final series to claim the second jersey scrimmage of the spring. The defense won the first scrimmage on April 8, 38-27.

“It was a great day,” said Dantonio. “We got a lot of plays in again and I think we saw every situation we needed to see out here. The scrimmage presented two-minute situations and an overtime situation, all of those type of things.

“I thought our guys again were physical. I thought we ran around well, I thought we tackled well, and I thought our offensive line protected pretty well. Not nearly as many penalties (as in the first scrimmage), so that was a big positive, especially unforced ones. You saw some good things out there.

“It’s tough to say as you’re watching (the quarterbacks), you get a lot more out of the film, but we try and provide opportunities. I thought (Tyler) O’Connor was pretty sharp, especially early on in the practice. But we tried to give everybody reps with the ones a little bit and spread it around. I thought Damion Terry had a good scrimmage. That’s just me standing on the field here.

“(Jon) Reschke made a lot of plays today. He’s a very good football player. Our linebacker group is solid. We’ve got a lot of moving part there, so that’s a positive.”

On the close late-game situation at the end, Dantonio said, “It’s amazing, I don’t create those, they just sort of happen. But 30-30 at the end, and the defense won in overtime; we made it so (the offense) had to score a touchdown in overtime to win. So it was good.”

The eighth annual women’s clinic, hosted by Dantonio and his wife Becky, was held later in the afternoon at the Skandalaris Center and the Duffy Daugherty Football Building. The event was held in conjunction with the program’s first-ever leadership clinic.

“We started (the women’s clinic in spring of 2009) with Arthur Ray and his family,” said Dantonio, as the first event raised money for Ray and his fight against cancer. “We’ve given a lot to various charities throughout the Lansing area. The majority of this will go to charity, the Boys and Girls Club of Lansing, so that’s a big positive for us. We’ll have a packed house, we always do.”

The Spartans have two practices scheduled for next week (Tuesday and Thursday) before concluding spring drills with the Green-White intrasquad game on Saturday, April 23 at 3 p.m. in Spartan Stadium. The spring game will be televised live nationally by BTN (broadcast team: Kevin Kugler, Jim Miller and Lisa Byington). MSU's spring game player draft is set for Tuesday before practice.