Friday, September 21, 2007

Game 4 - MSU at Notre Dame

My oh my, how things have changed. The Spartans are undefeated and are nearly a two-touchdown favorite against the winless Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.

Let's face it, this is the kind of game that should have MSU fans shaking in their boots. In the past, the Spartans have not handles success very well. Last year, after a 3-0 start, they blew a seemingly insurmountable 19-point fourth quarter lead against the Irish. They then went on to lose six of their next seven games to stay home during bowl season for the third straight year and sent coach John L. Smith packing.

So far, Coach Dantonio has been saying the right things. He has spoken about earning the respect of the fans once again. The team has lost so much respect over recent years that they have yet to sell out a home game in 2007.

MSU, including first-year coaches, has had a tremendous amount of success against Notre Dame. MSU has won seven of the last ten matchups, including five in a row in South Bend. No other team can claim such a streak in that stadium.

Luckily, this year's Notre Dame team is just that bad. They rank dead last in the nation in most offensive categories. Over they games they have yet to score an offensive touchdown. But everyone has heard those numbers in the media this week.

Here is the deal - The Spartans will face some adversity in this game. It is their first road trip of the year against a team desperate not to fall to 0-4 for the first time in their storied history. MSU should be able to run the ball at will and the Spartan defensive line should be able to keep Jimmy Clausen on his back for most of the day. MSU will run for over 200 yards in this game and register at least five sacks.

Prediction: MSU 24, Notre Dame 14.

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