Not much is going right for the Michigan State Spartans right now. In what has been an absolutely dreadful offseason, the bad news kept rolling for the Spartans today.
Several reports have stated that Vayante Copeland, a former starting cornerback for MSU, is no longer listed on the roster. Head Coach Mark Dantonio confirmed the news to the media, saying that Copeland was not “thrown off the team,” but didn’t go into any other specifics about the situation.
“There's certain things you've got to be able to make as you process yourself through from a junior to a senior," Dantonio said. "We wish Vayante the best, but he's not going to be able to be here."
The Spartans Football official Twitter account then tweeted out the most updated version of the roster, where it is clear to see Copeland is not listed.
Spartans release updated roster: https://t.co/TqZuaTpZ5o— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) June 13, 2017
To recap this offseason, which comes after a campaign that saw a mere three wins, the Spartans have dismissed three players who were charged with sexual assault. This happening after releasing Auston Robertson, who was later arraigned on a third-degree criminal sexual conduct charge.
In addition, the team recently told defensive linemen Cassius Peat that he could not return the program, a few days before he was supposed to arrive in East Lansing. There is chatter that Peat’s grades weren’t where they needed to be, but whatever the reason, the optics of the situation were poor.
Keep in mind that Jon Reschke and Thiyo Lukusa, both projected starters at outside linebacker and right tackle respectively, also left the program this offseason. Defensive back/special teamer Drake Martinez transferred out as well. A couple of other defensive backs, Kenney Lyke and Kaleel Gaines have also recently announced that they will be transferring.
Now, there is news breaking that a decision on defensive end Demetrius Cooper’s future will be announced soon. Cooper has been suspended for the past six months after allegedly spitting on a parking officer in East Lansing, and was charged with misdemeanor assault and battery.
If Cooper is released, that would make 11 players the Spartans have either cut ties with or lost this offseason (not counting Malik McDowell and Montae Nicholson who left for the draft as underclassmen) — with the majority expected to be starters or regular contributors on the field.
Back to Copeland, he ends his Spartans career with 43 total tackles and two interceptions, per Sports Reference. He played for two seasons, but missed several games due to injury. He leaves behind an awfully young and inexperienced defensive backfield.
This offseason cannot get much worse, and the product on the football field this season is not looking too promising, either. With the program in complete and utter disarray, we will see what the future holds for Sparty.