The Michigan State defense has made tremendous strides in recent years under coordinator Pat Narduzzi. It is difficult to even elaborate much on how they were good or what made them good in 2011 -- they were simply strong at just about everything. The Spartans have improved from 63rd in Def. F/+ in 2009, to 42nd in 2010, to 13th in 2011. Recruiting has certainly improved in this time as well (Gholston was a five-star get, while players like strong safety Isaiah Lewis, and starting linebackers Max Bullough and Chris Norman were four-star recruits), and that certainly doesn't hurt. But while tackle is a concern, this should still very much be a Top 20 defense -- a unit that can win games if the offense meets a minimum standard.