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Big Ten Football Media Days: A Spartan-Focused Recap

Sure, 90% of what was said in Chicago during Media Days were platitudes and coach speak. However, a few interesting quotes were said.

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Another Big Ten Football Media Days has come and gone, with almost every head coach claiming to have a better team this season. The Big Ten - where the number of teams doesn't match the name and every team is above average.  It started on Monday with each of the head coaches giving a brief press conference (in some cases, very brief -- why don't you want to talk to Kirk Ferentz journalists?), and Mark Dantonio reiterated themes familiar to Spartan fans. The team is getting used to being one of the "hunted". He wants a more disciplined team. He had great leadership from the seniors. However, he did drop this gem:

Q.  You mentioned the intensity of the Michigan rivalry.  How do you keep it intense when you've won five out of the last six, and what keeps the fire burning for that rivalry?
COACH DANTONIO:  I continue to live in Michigan.  That ought to do it.

Dantonio: master of the pithy answer.

Connor Cook also gave an interview Monday, where he was asked about MSU's rivalry with Michigan.

Reporter: The little brother — I’ve got to ask you this — the whole little brother thing, I know it predated you. But the video’s out there (of Mike Hart from 2007) and it seems like every year, without fail, there’s gonna be a Michigan guy that’s gonna make a little brother reference. Is that something that (ticks) you guys off?

Cook: "Yeah. It (ticks) off the coaches, (ticks) us off, (ticks) me off as a player. But I mean, who hasn’t seen that video a million times? And it just isn’t right. You don’t say stuff like that, you don’t talk to the media like that. But that’s Michigan. (Pause). Sorry, can you guys not use that? That’s really bad. Please. I probably shouldn’t have said that."

Let's take a look at Connor Cook real quick. Mobile quarterback. Penchant for leading team back from fourth-quarter deficits. Many fans wanted him to be benched for Damion Terry earlier in the season. Obviously still getting used to this media thing. Remind you of anyone? Connor Cook is the closest real-life equivalent to Friday Night Light's Matt Saracen right now, and I will disregard any argument to the contrary.

Tuesday was a more informal session, with each of the coaches and selected players (MSU's were Cook, Shilique Calhoun, and Kurtis Drummond). Since there were a lot of different quotes, and I feel kind of guilty taking so many direct quotes, We'll do a mini Linking Laconically here:

Five-star Michigan State defenders Malik McDowell, Lawrence Thomas set to join forces inside | Detroit Free Press |

Dantonio says it's time for the 6'4", 309 lb. Thomas "to be a starter on this football team". If that happens, people may die.

Pat Narduzzi turned down 'a number of' job offers to stay at MSU | Detroit Free Press |

The UConn offer was, unsurprisingly, not the only offer Narduzzi received this past offseason.

New Michigan State football locker room impresses players | Detroit Free Press |

The locker room is named "The Rachel Fairman Adams Spartan Locker Room", named after Flozell Adams's late mother.

B1G Player Survey: Best player, best venue & more " Big Ten Network

Mark Dantonio, Spartan Stadium, and the Spartan team in general all get plaudits here.

Ticker: Ex-MSU QB Kirk Cousins has a sweet new ride — his grandma's van? | Detroit Free Press |

Lastly, this has nothing to do with Big Ten Football Media Days, but I had to include this for obvious reasons.