A long, long, long offseason in East Lansing is not seeing any respite with the calendar changing to summer.
That much was made apparent as news surfaced on Tuesday that the Spartans would be without yet another likely starter — potentially the team’s seventh — when head coach Mark Dantonio confirmed reports that cornerback Vayante Copeland was no longer is with the program.
“There’s certain things you’ve gotta be able to make as you process yourself through from junior to senior and things of that nature,” Dantonio said, according to the Detroit Free Press. “I wish Vayante the best, but he’s not gonna be able to be here… Vayante’s done a great job here… He was not thrown off this football team.”
Copeland started seven times at MSU but has had a bit of an injury history at the school, including suffering a broken foot to end the 2016 season. All told, he made 36 tackles and had an interception last year and was expected to assume one starting corner spot in 2017. The loss of Copeland is significant as the Spartans’ defensive backfield has already suffered heavy personnel losses and sports a rather thin depth chart prior to fall camp.
Also notable is that Dantonio failed to expand on the status of defensive end Demetrius Cooper, another potential starter who has been involved in several legal issues in the past year. As if that wasn’t enough news to come out of the football team, the program also confirmed that offensive line coach Mark Statento was being promoted to assistant head coach/recruiting coordinator and former Detroit Lions front office executive Sheldon White was being hired as the Spartans’ director of player personnel.
We’re not sure when Dantonio is going to get a chance to go on vacation this summer, but safe to say he really might need to take one given all that has been going on in East Lansing.