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Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

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Eagle Spirit dancer Migizii Kwe dances with the audience at this years East Lansing Art Festival. Photo credit: Samantha Ku/WDBM
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Goodbye, MSU | Adam Steinhauer
Goodbye, MSU | Adam Steinhauer
Adam Steinhauer, Marketing Director • May 10, 2024
View All
Eagle Spirit dancer Migizii Kwe dances with the audience at this years East Lansing Art Festival. Photo credit: Samantha Ku/WDBM
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Three Takeaways from the MSU Football Spring Showcase

MSU+Head+Coach+Jonathan+Smith+speaks+to+the+media+after+the+Spring+Showcase+on+Saturday%2C+April+20%2C+2024+at+Spartan+Stadium+in+East+Lansing%2C+MI.+%28Jack+Moreland%29
Jack Moreland
MSU Head Coach Jonathan Smith speaks to the media after the Spring Showcase on Saturday, April 20, 2024 at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, MI. (Jack Moreland)

EAST LANSING– Michigan State football capped off their spring practice window with the Spring Showcase at Spartan Stadium on Saturday.

It was the first time the public had been able to watch head coach Jonathan Smith lead the new-look Spartans.

 

The revamped offense led by Aidan Chiles

When Jonathan Smith inherited the program, there wasn’t a quarterback on scholarship. Quarterback Aidan Chiles followed Smith from Oregon State in the transfer portal. The incoming sophomore was the second-ranked transfer portal QB by 247 Sports. 

MSU sophomore quarterback Aidan Chiles (2) drops back to pass in the Spring Showcase on Saturday, April 20, 2024 at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, MI. (Jack Moreland)

Chiles found senior wide receiver Montorie Foster Jr. early to start the afternoon. On the first play of the scrimmage, the two connected for a 22-yard strike over the middle. In a two-minute drill to finish the first half, Chiles found Foster Jr. again, this time for a 35-yard completion outside the numbers to put the offense in the red zone. 

Fifth-year running back Nate Carter looked sharp. On the second play of the scrimmage, Carter took off for a 48-yard rushing touchdown. Later he would catch a wheel route in the end zone for his second touchdown of the game. 

The Spartans’ offensive line was a driving force in most of these plays. Coach Smith was pleased with the performance up-front.

“It was probably their best day out of 15 [practices], looking at the offensive line and what we were able to do with protections,” said Smith.

 

Freshman Wide Receiver Shows Out

Freshman wide receiver Nick Marsh, a four-star recruit from River Rouge, Mich., was a bright spot for the second-string offense. Marsh created separation downfield and had multiple catches that resulted in first downs in the first. 

MSU redshirt sophomore lineman Jacob Merritt (69) celebrates with freshman receiver Nick Marsh (15) after Marsh’s touchdown reception during the Spring Showcase on Saturday, April 20, 2024 at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, MI. (Jack Moreland)

On the first play of the second half, Marsh showed his ability to take the top off the defense, getting behind both safeties for a 75-yard touchdown. Marsh had a good chemistry with North Dakota transfer back-up quarterback Tommy Schuster.

Coach Smith was impressed with the young wide receiver.

“I think Nick has really come on the last half of practices. You can tell he’s getting more and more comfortable in the scheme and he’s gifted physically,” said Smith. 

Marsh has also grown closer to Chiles, who sees a lot of himself in Marsh.

“I see a lot of myself in Nick, we have different attitudes and everything but he’s young, he’s a baller and he drives a lot off of his talent,” said Chiles. “Coming into the fall we have to work with Nick and get him into the playbook.” 

 

New Rules Implemented

This offseason there have been two major rule changes coming this fall to college football. First, the addition of the in-helmet communications. Now in college football, just like the NFL, quarterbacks can receive playcalls from coaches and no longer have to look over to the sideline for call signals. 

“Yeah we’ve been using [Helmet mics] all spring, I thought it was solid,” said Smith. “We only have three of them so a couple of the quarterback guys didn’t have it. But I think that’s a good rule change for college football and being able to communicate that way.”

The new way of play calling has been complicated for Chiles.

“It’s a love/hate relationship there man, I’m used to signals you know, and if you get the signal wrong that’s on you, ” said Chiles. “But sometimes you don’t get the full call but we’re working on it and it’s easier than having the coaches on the field.”

This was also the first look we saw of the two-minute warning at the college level, another rule adapted from the NFL. 

Michigan State will be back at Spartan Stadium to kick off the 2024 regular season against FAU on August 31.

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About the Contributor
Jack Moreland
Jack Moreland, Sports Photo Editor
Jack (he/him) is a Journalism major focusing in sports reporting and media photography. Growing up in nearby Okemos, Michigan, he has been a lifelong Spartan and is proud to sport the green and white. Jack is a big Baby Keem fan and is known to post on your block with your wishlist on you.

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