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Kirk Cousins is MSU's Name Only Starter, and Other Observations on Michigan State Depth Chart

Coach Mark Dantonio named Kirk Cousins the starter for the Montana State game Saturday.  However, Keith Nichol is still listed as a co-starter, and will also play in the first half.  That's probably one of the least interesting parts of today's release of the depth chart (depth chart can be found here in PDF).  Let's break down all the positions:

  • OT: Rocco Cironi might be more injured than we've been led to believe, as Bowling Green transfer D.J. Young is listed as a co-starter at left tackle along with Cironi.  At right tackle, fifth-year senior Brendon Moss has the start ahead of another fifth-year senior, Mike Schmeding.  Don't be surprised if someone else starts at right tackle in a couple games.
  • OG: Joel Foreman holds down his spot at left guard ahead of Ethan RuhlandJared McGaha has won the spot at right guard, beating out J'Michael Deane.
  • C: No surprises, as Joel Nitchman's starting.  One time D-Lineman John Stipek is listed as the backup.
  • TE: The only surprise here is that Dion Sims is listed as the third tight end, behind Charlie Gantt and Brian Linthecum.
  • FB: Recuited as a linebacker in the JLS era, Andrew Hawken is the starting fullback ahead of Josh Rouse and Andrew Pendy.
  • DE: Nothing drastic has happened since camp started, as Trevor Anderson and Colin Neely are starting, with David Rolf and Tyler Hoover as the back-ups.  Not much to see here.
  • DT: Oren Wilson has kept one of the starting spots, and Kevin Pickelman has won the second starting spot from Jerel WorthyAntonio Jeremiah's at third string still, and isn't likely to see the field unless he can get under 320 pounds.
  • MLB: Greg Jones, duh. Adam Decker's behind Jones, also duh.
  • OLB: Eric Gordon's keeping the starting spot he had last year, and Brandon Denson's starting on the other side.  It looks like all the hype around freshman Chris Norman wasn't just hot air, he's got a spot in the two deep.  Jon Misch battled injuries last year, and now healthy, he's got the other OLB two-deep spot.
  • CB: Jeremy Ware and Ross Weaver are co-starters at one spot, and that's the only news here.
  • S: Danny Fortener and Marcus Hyde are starters, as announced last week.
  • K/P: Swenson. Bates. Done.  Of note: Swenson will be performing kickoffs.
  • PR: Keshawn Martin will return punts in this game, with Dell backing him up.
  • KR: A.J. Jimmerson will be one kick returner, and either Martin or Glenn Winston will be the other starter.  I'm guessing Martin will eventually win the job, since Winston probably still needs some time to get into playing shape.