September 15, 2012 at 8:00 pm EST
Last Meeting: Notre Dame 31-Michigan State 13
Lead Editor Andrew Hall: Notre Dame 14-Michigan State 24
Staff Writer Nick Combs: Notre Dame 28-Michigan State 27
Podcast Co-Host Brett Arney: Notre Dame 24-Michigan State 13
Michigan State lost some critical talent on the Offensive side of the ball. However, they have not missed a beat without Kurt Cousins and B.J. Cunningham. Mark Dantonio has built a stable and consistent program that continues to reload with talent. Notre Dame has a good chance at stopping the run. So far, the Fighting Irish are allowing 119.5 yards. This is obviously skewed by playing Navy in the first week. But, the Irish have a solid front 7 with Louis Nix, Stephon Tuitt and Manti Te’o. These are three stars that can keep La’Veon Bell in check. However, do the Irish commit 7 to 8 players in the box every play to stop the run? If so, Andrew Maxwell may have to win the game for the Spartans. This would be a good strategy for Bob Diaco and Brian Kelly. It would seem like they would prefer to beat by Andrew Maxwell than by La’Veon Bell.
The Michigan State defense returns 9 of 11 starters from last year, losing starting safety in Trenton Robinson and the All-American defensive tackle Jerel Worthy. This is a very experienced group that contains players that know what this rivalry means. The loss of Worthy should open up the middle a little bit more than it was last year. The main ingredients to succeed is slow down Gholston, always find Allen especially on blitzing situations, and use our strength on offense, which is Tyler Eifert who can really do some damage to undersized Allen and Adams.