Connor Cook led his team to a victory in Michigan State’s spring game Saturday in East Lansing. A short touchdown pass to tight end Josiah Price with 27 seconds left broke a tie and gave the White team a 20-13 win over the Green team. It was the first time the starting quarterback for the Spartans and defending Big Ten champions won a spring game, according to MLive.com.
A reported total of 35,000 Michigan State fans– head coach Mark Dantonio wanted 50,000 — turned out to watch Cook complete 11 of 21 pass attempts for 159 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the final spring practice. Tyler O’Connor led the Green team by completing 11 of 20 pass attempts for 125 yards and a touchdown, but was intercepted twice. Damion Terry, the star freshman quarterback with great potential, provided one of the highlights of the day when he scored a touchdown on his first play from scrimmage. Terry took a handoff from Cook and rushed 23 yards for a touchdown behind some good blocking.
The Spartans were not afraid to pull out some tricks in the spring game, perhaps an indication the offense may be looking to open things up a little more this season. Eary on R.J. Shelton took a sweep from O’Connor but passed back to a wide-open O’Connor on the left side of the field. O’Connor then tossed a 29-yard completion to Tony Lippett to complete the play. The tone for an offense looking to spread things out in the fall and avoid a slow start may have been set in the process.
Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.
Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.
“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”
Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.
You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season? Watch lists are being whittled.
The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior. The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.
The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).
The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten. The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).
Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.
Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah