Another week, another new set of weekly captains for the Michigan State Spartans — except, of course, for senior safety Xavier Henderson who has now been named a captain for the fourth consecutive week (out of four possible weeks).
It’s an all senior lineup of leaders against the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Joining Henderson as captains this week are graduate senior defensive end Drew Beesley, redshirt senior tight end Tyler Hunt and redshirt senior offensive guard Kevin Jarvis. This is the first time that Hunt and Jarvis have been named captains this season, and the second time for Beesley. This is also the first week where head coach Mel Tucker has selected four captains, as the Spartans went with three captains for each of the first three weeks of the campaign.
Henderson continues to not only be the unquestioned leader for the defense, but for the Michigan State football team overall. Henderson led the Spartans with eight tackles against Miami (FL) last week, and was named as one of MSU’s defensive players of the game for his effort. He also leads MSU on the season in total tackles (25), tackles for loss (three, tied with Jacub Panasiuk), sacks (two, tied with Jeff Pietrowski and Drew Beesley) and interceptions (one, tied with Angelo Grose and Ronald Williams).
After missing the Week Two contest against Youngstown State, Beesley had a monster game against Miami, and made arguably the play of the game on defense. He had five tackles, two sacks, two tackles for loss and forced a fumble. Beesley strip-sacked Miami quarterback D’Eriq King, which was recovered by Panasiuk, setting the Spartans up at Miami’s 13-yard-line. That play later set up a pass from Payton Thorne to Jayden Reed for a touchdown, giving MSU a 24-14 lead at that point in the game, which the Spartans never looked back from.
Hunt, the former punter turned tight end, had two catches for 20 yards against Miami and was named as one of MSU’s special teams players of the game, along with punter Bryce Baringer. On the season, Hunt has recorded four catches for 36 yards (nine yards per reception), but it is the little things he does with his blocking and on special teams that likely got him the captain standing for this week’s game.
Jarvis is the team’s starting right guard, although he splits some reps with fellow redshirt senior Matt Carrick. Now in his fifth year with the program, Jarvis has played in 35 career games for the Spartans, with 30 starts. He is one of Michigan State’s most versatile offensive linemen, having played at right tackle, left tackle and right guard.