Michigan State is struggling. The Spartans were once ranked in the Top 10 but have since lost consecutive games to Wisconsin and then Indiana, first losing at home to the Badgers by 24 and then on the road at Indiana.
It could be the start of a serious slide one season after Michigan State made the College Football Playoff. But Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio is steadfast.
“We’re not cashing out this year yet,” Dantonio said Tuesday.
The two-week fall was sudden, but Dantonio acknowledges outside expectations for his program are heightened due to recent success.
“Nobody thought we’d be 2-2 at this point in the season. Most thought we’d be 4-0, but here we are,” Dantonio said. “Our goals are still in our own hands.”
Michigan State will try to get back on track when it faces BYU at 3:30 p.m. (ET) Saturday on ABC.
Some other news conference notes:
- Dantonio said he and the players plan on attending the late Mylan Hicks’ service on Friday. Hicks, a former Michigan State linebacker, was killed in a shooting in Calgary last month.
- With star defensive lineman Malik McDowell forced to sit the first half of Saturday’s game against BYU because of a targeting call against Indiana, Dantonio expects offensive lineman Brandon Clemons to play some at defensive line.
- Dantonio confirmed that linebacker Riley Bullough will not play against BYU this week. He added he thinks he’s close to returning
- Defensive lineman Raequan Williams is likely out the next one or two weeks.
- Dantonio again seemed to be in disagreement regarding the targeting call on McDowell: “I don’t know how you play football sometimes.” The coach later did say he knows the Big Ten is doing its best with those situations.
Dantonio: Mylan Hicks' service will be on Friday. We'll make plans for our players to go and myself, as well.
— Spartan Football (@MSU_Football) October 4, 2016
Land of 10’s Luke Srodulski contributed to this report.