Hey, it’s Friday, which means I have answers to your Blog Bag questions. A lot of them, naturally, had to do with MSU’s performance last week at Troy. I hope you find my answers satisfactory.
Q: Was the defensive game plan against Troy to play zone defense the entire game? Why did we not come out of the zone defense when Troy was marching up and down the field all night? Can we expect better halftime adjustments from the coaches going forward?
A: I never got into game plan talk this week, but I asked Dan Mullen about the coaches working on improving their own performance within a game, be it scheming or halftime adjustments.
“We talked about it all on Sunday, seeing where we made our mistakes, how we can help ourselves out better, and how we put our players in a better position to make plays,” he said.
Q: I understand the need to sub in players and keep fresh guys out there, but it seemed like they should have left our A list (defensive line) players out there longer, especially in goal line situations, to help get a lead that we could hold before playing some of the younger guys as much. Were the defensive players on that rotation by design because of the opponent, or is that what we should expect to see against the tougher SEC teams as well?
A: Well, coaches and players alike believe that the second D-line unit is just as effective as the first unit. There is certainly good depth there, and there’s a certain level of trust the coaches have to have in the second-stringers. And when facing an up-tempo team like Troy, it’s especially important to rotate guys in regularly.
Q: Has receivers coach Tim Brewster been vocal to your knowledge (interviews or statements) on the poor receiver performance in that game?
A: We never got to speak with Brewster this week, which was a little unusual. We get assistant coaches on Mondays, but he wasn’t there. Brewster wasn’t the only one who didn’t make it, so I don’t know if I’d read too much into that.
I’m betting he’s been vocal, though, and reminding his players that the kind of performance they had last week isn’t something they’d want to sign their name to.
Q: What’s the deal with the different formations when punting? Is it a keeping up with the Joneses, or is there a method to the madness?
A: You’ve been paying closer attention than I have. Never really noticed a bunch of different formations, but I have noticed before that special teams units will often do odd things like the swinging gate on PATs or breaking quickly out of a huddle on kickoffs, and I’ve yet to understand what the purpose is, except for when there is some trickery involved like a fake or onside kick.
Maybe they’re trying to set up future opponents for something, or maybe it just gives them something to do during practice. I don’t know.
Q: Any changes proposed for home parking woes, or is that the price of success? Kinda sucks to pay $20 to park a mile (or more) away and have to walk.
A: No changes coming far as I know. It’s my understanding that the renovations at Davis Wade Stadium are going to affect parking all season long. So, yes, it’s the price of success and growth.
Q: Are there any radio stations on the MSU network that are streaming the audio of football games online? I was able to find one station last year, but none so far this year.
A: Best thing I can tell you to do is either go through the affiliate list and find their websites – a tedious process I’m not up for today – or do as one reader suggested on the blog and use an app like TuneIn Radio and search for one of those stations there.