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Michigan State vs Notre Dame: 2nd-half thread and 3 things to watch for

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NCAA Football: Michigan State at Notre Dame Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State is handling Notre Dame in South Bend, but only are leading 15-7 at halftime.

You could not have asked for a better first-half performance, but as we’ve seen before, winning in South Bend requires four good quarters of football.

1. Can Spartans keep containing Deshone Kizer?

You can make a good argument that MSU contained Notre Dame’s star QB very well in the first half, but then again, he threw a perfect pass at the end of the half that should have been a TD, and we could be looking at a tie game.

Thankfully, the pass was dropped to preserve a 15-7 lead, and the Spartans did great for the most part in limiting Kizer’s big plays. He is Notre Dame’s offense, so keeping him contained in the pocket and staying on receivers should give MSU a win at this point.

2. Can ground game come alive?

MSU was able to do enough offensively to put up 15 points, but most of the first half was either quick scoring or quicker punting or a turnover. The Spartans need to establish the run in the second half to preserve this win, but so far, have run for just 70 yards on 22 carries (3.4 yard per rush).

LJ Scott has just 30 yards on 10 carries. That needs to improve in the second half for the Spartans to maintain longer drives and come out of South Bend with a win.

3. Keep avoiding turnovers

Outside of the fluke interception, MSU did great holding onto the ball in the first half. On the other side, Notre Dame has fumbled twice with the Spartans recovering both. At the current pace this game is going, simply avoiding turnovers will give MSU a great chance at winning this game.

Enjoy the 2nd half!