In East Lansing, MI at Spartan Stadium, the Michigan State Spartans hosted the Western Michigan Broncos for a prime-time game under the lights to open the 2013 football season. The Spartans exhibited an explosive and effective defense throughout the game. The offense on the other hand looked shaky and inconsistent. But the Spartans pulled through, winning 26-13 and starting the season at 1-0.
The Spartan defense, last year considered one of the best in the NCAA, shows no sign of decline this year as they dominated both on the line of scrimmage and in the back field. They opened up the scoreboard with an interception returned for a touchdown. Spartan Jarius Jones is credited with the pick off Bronco QB Tyler Van Tubbergen, he lateraled back to Kurtis Drummond who ran the 21 yard return in for the score.
With a little more than six minutes left in the first half, Western Michigan tied the game when back-up Bronco QB Zach Terrell connected with Clark Mussman for a 14 yard touchdown pass.
During the third quarter, Spartan place kicker Kevin Muma tacked on six more points with a pair of field goals, 20 yards and 30 yards.
Sophomore defensive end Shilique Calhoun recovered a Bronco fumble and ran it 16 yards for another defensive touchdown for the Spartans.
The Broncos were able to score again late in the game when Terrell connected with Corey Davis for 14 yards to bring the score to 26-13.
The highlight was the strong defense of Michigan State. The Broncos were held to 11 total rushing yards on 27 attempts. The Spartans snatched three interceptions, two from Jarius Jones, the other from Kurtis Drummond. The Spartans also netted four team sacks.
The Spartan offense was shaky at best. Andrew Maxwell started at quarterback, but was replaced by Connor Cook after three drives. Cook did not fare much better as Maxwell was put back in. Maxwell went 11-21 with 74 passing yards. Cook passed 6-16 and 42 yards.
Jeremy Langford led the rushing attack with 94 total rushing yards on 20 attempts. He notched the only rushing touchdown of the game.
Next the Spartans will host South Florida next Saturday at noon in Spartan Stadium.
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