Ten games into this whirlwind of a season, we finally know a thing or two about this team.
There are some things we are still unsure of, like who exactly the real Brian Lewerke is. We think he’s a great quarterback that can guide an offense one week, but then the next he’ll have a performance like he did against Ohio State.
Another is what will the running back situation look like next year, and how reliable are they? I really have no idea.
The playcalling is also hit-and-miss, although it has been much better lately. And you’re insane if you blame playcalling for Saturday’s blowout loss.
Anyway, we do know some things to be final as the season nears its end.
The program is fine, everyone
Despite what every negative Nancy had to say from Saturday’s calamity on Twitter (don’t look up my tweets, thanks), this whole season has been a relief.
Let’s remind ourselves one more time – this is a rebuilding season. A season where many walked in hoping for 6 or 7 wins knowing this was going to be a young, raw team also had many nervous if the end of Mark Dantonio’s magic was near.
Well gang, this year clearly shows it isn’t. Yes, the OSU game was a disaster, but don’t let one game erase the previous nine weeks. Seven wins, two against then-top ten teams and a great chance at a solid bowl game should they finish with wins over Maryland and Rutgers.
It’s clear the 3-9 season was an anomaly. Our young Spartans have turned the page with a hell of a rebuilding season, and they should only be better in the years to come. Shame on me for doubting Dantonio for even a half second.
Offensive line is still a project
Alright, now everything isn’t sunshine and rainbows. We will point out positives, but also look at flaws here. The offensive line has been one of them, and that has been clear in the last few weeks.
The run game has been a non-factor because the running backs simply can’t get a push up front. Lewerke had a fraction of a second to make a decision against OSU.
There’s no reason to think this young group won’t improve next year under Mark Staten, despite being delivered a blow in the departure of Brian Allen. However, this is the biggest weakness on the team that will need to turn it around to be Big Ten contenders next season.
No need to sweat the WR
This is the most obvious one. The receiver group will be the least of this team’s worries the next few years after they’ve done nothing but shine this season. Felton Davis has one more season, and Darrell Stewart, Cody White, Hunter Rison and Trishton Jackson have at least two years left.
No Fly Zone is returning
The No Fly Zone is making its return thanks to Justin Layne and Josiah Scott locking down both ends of the field. David Dowell and Khari Willis are doing just fine as safeties. For a position group that was inconsistent last season, it’s tough to not love what they’ve been doing.
Joe Bachie is the next great Dantonio middle linebacker
Death. Taxes. Mark Dantonio having a great middle linebacker. All Joe Bachie has done is excel this season, and we look forward to his production for two more seasons.
So gang, what did we miss? Is there anything you think is a certainty with this squad?