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Michigan State’s starting QB questionable for spring game

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For those among the Michigan State faithful looking to catch their first official 2012 glimpse of the heir apparent to Kirk Cousins, you may have to wait a little longer.

The Spartans confirmed Tuesday that Andrew Maxwell suffered a sprained knee in the first scrimmage of the spring over the weekend and will be sidelined for at least a week.  As a result, the redshirt junior-to-be QB is officially listed as doubtful for the April 28 spring game.

The good news is that, at least for now, the injury is not expected to have an impact on Maxwell’s availability for summer camp or even involve any type of surgical procedure.

He may or may not be back by the end of spring ball here,” Dantonio said before the start of Tuesday’s practice. “We’ll see how it goes early in the week next week. But with that (redshirt freshman) Connor Cook will have all the opportunities at quarterback, so you’ve got to look at it as an opportunity and a positive and build from that. A non-surgical thing with Andrew, sprained knee, and we’ll move from there.”

Based on Maxwell’s status as the presumptive front-runner for the starting job, though, it’s highly likely Dantonio will err on the side of caution when it comes to the player participating in what is in essence a meaningless exhibition “game”.  In fact, based on comments made by the head coach prior to practice, he may actually prefer to see Maxwell on the sidelines so that the young backup will get more reps learning the offense.

“The reality is, if it had to happen, you’d rather (Maxwell) do it than Connor,” Dantonio said. “Connor needs the work. He’s the true freshman. Andrew’s been in the system for three years and he’ll be ready to go (over the summer).”

(Writer’s note: the answer is, no, I don’t have any idea why Dantonio apparently referred to Cook, a member of MSU’s 2011 recruiting class, as a true freshman.)

Maxwell has played in nine games the past two seasons — four last year, five in 2010 — as Cousins’ backup, so this is the first opportunity for the former high school All-American and top-rated QB in the Class of 2009 to take hold of the reins of the Spartans’ offense.

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