Michigan State may be off to a 2-0 start but the defense has twice as many touchdowns scored (four) as the offense (two). Head coach Mark Dantonio is looking to find some answers to spark the Spartans offense. This week, with Michigan State taking on Youngstown State, part of the search will focus on finding a quarterback that can be effective. Freshman Damion Terry, a four-star dual threat quarterback recruit according to Rivals, is apparently in the mix.
According to a report by MLive.com, Terry was taking reps with skill position players on Sunday and Dantonio has said the job of starting quarterback will have to be earned as we enter the third week of the college football season.
“The bottom line is making plays and having confidence in yourself, and stepping up to the plate and seizing the moment,” Dantonio said according to MLive.com. “We normally don’t practice on a Sunday, but we have our skill guys out there right now. As a matter of fact, I came in to take this call.”
Michigan State ranks 12th in the Big Ten in passing offense and is one of two teams in the conference yet to throw a touchdown pass (Purdue). Only Minnesota has a worst pass completion percentage in the Big Ten as well, with the Spartans combining to complete just 47.5 percent of their attempts through two games against Western Michigan and South Florida. Andrew Maxwell has been starting for the Spartans and has completed 15-of-30 attempts for 114 yards. Sophomore Connor Cook and freshman Tyler O’Connor each have played as well but it is clear Dantonio is looking for somebody, perhaps anybody at this point, to separate themselves from the rest of the unit.
Ole Miss will be without a starting piece of its defensive puzzle for an extended period of time, both the player and the school revealed Tuesday.
With rumors swirling about his condition, C.J. Johnson confirmed on his personal Twitter account late this morning that he will be undergoing surgery at some point in the not-too-distant future. The linebacker sustained an injury to his left knee in last Saturday’s loss to Florida and did not return to the contest.
Subsequent to that posting, Ole Miss confirmed that Johnson underwent surgery earlier in the day to repair a torn meniscus in his knee. The procedure and rehab will sideline Johnson for a period of 4-6 weeks.
At the low-end of the prognosis, Johnson would miss the next four games — New Mexico State, Memphis, Texas A&M, Auburn — and return for the Nov. 7 game against Arkansas. The high-end would have him sidelined until the regular-season finale against Mississippi State.
Johnson had started all five games at middle linebacker for the Rebels. He started 26 games at defensive end the past three years before moving to linebacker.
Already in the crosshairs for his 2-3 team’s late-game failures, Butch Jones now finds himself under increasing scrutiny for something that allegedly happened a couple of months ago.
The website Gridiron.com, which features such respected journalists Tony Barnhart and Mike Huguenin among others, reported earlier today that the Tennessee head coach was involved in what was described as a “physical altercation” with senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder during summer camp this past August. The source close to the program added that practice film that day captured the alleged incident, although it’s unclear if that tapes still exists.
From the site’s report:
The incident occurred during fall camp, about the time that news started to come out about a few offensive linemen who were considering stepping away from the program. Crowder walked off the practice field one day and missed a day or two of practice, and Brett Kendrick and Dylan Wiesman were said to be contemplating their futures. Sources say the players’ actions stemmed from an incident between Jones and Crowder.
The website also made a Freedom of Information request seeking any correspondence between the university and the Crowder family be turned over, but writes that UT “administrators said any sort of letter or correspondence that may or may not have happened was covered under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.”
Monday, Jones labeled what began as message-board speculation that he had struck one of his Vols players as “absolutely ridiculous.” The Knoxville News Sentinel contacted Crowder’s father, with the paper writing that “he had no comment and did not want to give validation to message boards.”
At least publicly, the university has yet to address the allegations. Jones will get yet another chance to address the speculation with the media in the very near future.