TEMPE, Ariz. — These days, all it takes to sound important on the Internet is having a bold opinion and letting people post their angry responses. To pay homage to Angry Man On The Internet, we’re dusting off our old Take-O-Meter to gauge immediate reaction to Michigan State’s 16-13 loss against Arizona State in the 101-degree heat of Tempe, Ariz.
Take 1: MSU’s offensive line could be this bad all year.
Score: 4 TAKES out of 5
The graduated Brian Allen may have been worth more than Michigan State fans gave him credit for, as last year’s center drove forward an offensive line that was heavily inexperienced. Now, with a year of starting under the belt for three of the five starters in 2018, the result is…more of the same for MSU up front.
With Cole Chewins not 100 percent through injury, MSU really only lacked a push up front at the vital moments. There was a pair of third down and short plays that MSU went backward on, but there were also entire drives that the Spartans got enough push up front and paved the way for Connor Heyward to have another solid game with LJ Scott battling injury.
The jury’s still out on the young unit, as a bye week could have them fixing up any glaring issues with the Big Ten schedule approaching.
Take 2: The offense can’t finish in the red zone.
Score: 3 TAKES out of 5
The results through two games are not exactly the prettiest reading, as crucial penalties cost MSU eight points last week and the aforementioned offensive line probably left a few more points on the field in Arizona. For me, it’s more about play-calling in goal-to-go situations than on any one unit. Telegraphing runs at the 5-yard line is so 2011, Dave Warner. For as much talent as MSU has on the outside, it took until the third quarter for Warner to use it, as Brian Lewerke took a hit and completed a 31-yard touchdown to a leaping Cody White.
Against any Power 5 team, eventually teams need to turn 3 points into six. The math isn’t hard.
Take 3: Mark Dantonio got out-coached by Herm Edwards.
Score: 2 TAKES out of 5
Given ASU’s weird hierarchy with Edwards’ hiring, who knows how much of the game Edwards is actually calling? Dave Warner got out-coached by…himself, the offensive line was still inconsistent, and given that MSU had a pair of key guys out in Josiah Scott and LJ Scott for most of the second half, the result while disastrous for MSU is not the end of the world. From here, expectations still have to be lowered.