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EXTRA SWEET.....CFB.....MICHIGAN STATE 26, MICHIGAN 20 (OT)...WAYNE STATE 47, Ashland 40, Sa 10/3/09
Posted on: 10-03-2009

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    After letting a 14-P lead slip away
late in the 4th-Qtr, Michigan State then
came up with big plays on both defense
and offense Saturday to beat rival
Michigan 26-20 in overtime.
    Larry Caper's second touchdown rush
of the game was on State's first OT
possession and put an abrupt end to the
    Wolverine QBack Tate Forcier had
calmly directed a pair of touchdown
drives in the last half of the final
quarter. Forcier passed 22-yards to Darryl Stonum with 4:03 remaining. Forcier then
connected for a 12-yard slight inside slant near the right side of the goalpost to Roy
Roundtree with just 2-sec on the clock to force overtime.
    Michigan State won the toss and put Forcier and the Wolverines on offense
to start the OT. On the sixth play of UM's drive, Forcier tried to force the ball to
Martavious Odoms in the middle of the end zone on a 3rd-&-5 play from the Spartan
eight yard line. MSU's Danny Fortener tipped the ball up for an agonizing second and
it was picked off by fellow State DB Chris L. Rucker.
    After the turnover, Michigan State knew it only needed a field goal by sure-footed
Brett Swenson, who had the wind at his back. A 9-yard loss on a bad pitch from
Spartan QBack Keith Nichol to RBack Glenn Winston lost nine yards to move MSU out
of field goal range. Nichol then hit B.J. Cunningham with an 11-yard pass to the left
side to get back in Swenson's range. Caper took the 3rd-&-8 rush wide right to try and
get a few more yards for Swenson, but when he turned upfield he broke an arm tackle
by Wolverine Troy Woolfolk and saw daylight to scamper into the end zone for the
23-yard winning score.
    Nichol was on in relief of Kirk Cousins. Michigan State played musical quarterbacks
from the 2nd-Qtr onward due to a right ankle injury suffered by Cousins. Even with the
ankle heavily taped, Cousins managed the longest rush of the game on State's third
possession that began in the 4th-Qtr, a 41-yard scramble. But that drive fizzled four
plays later when Cousins' 4th-&-3 pass to Keshawn Martin from the UM 31 fell incomplete.    
That play sparked the Michigan comeback where the Wolverines scored twice and the
Spartans couldn't muster a first down for the balance of regulation play.
    Using the theory the best defense is a good offense, State controlled the ball on a
more than 3-to-1 margin in the opening half, 22:40-to-7:20, in building a 10-6 intermission
advantage. State held just a slight TOP edge in the 2nd-H for an overall 39:46-to-20:14
final margin.
    A Stevie Brown interception of a Cousins pass on the game's third play from scrimmage
set up Michigan kicker Jason Olesnavage 36-yard field goal for an early 3-0 UM lead. The
Spartans controlled the ball most of the rest of the 1st-Qtr, going on a 17-play/80-yard
drive that took 10:02 off the clock. Caper ran 1-yard for the touchdown. The drive actually
produced 130-yards in offense because MSU was assessed 50-yards in penalties during the
    Olesnavage and Swenson exchanged 2nd-Qtr field goals. Olesnavage made it 7-6 with
his 42-yard boot. Swenson hit from 26-yards as the clock expired going into halftime for
MSU's 10-6 lead.
    Midway through the 3rd-Qtr a 3-yard loss on a fake punt rush by Michigan's Zoltan
Mesko [a play called on his own] gave State the ball at the UM 13. Three consecutive
Winston runs failed to produce a first down and MSU settled for Swenson's 24-yard FG
and a 13-7 lead.
    Winston made up for that previous 3rd-&-1 loss of a yard by running right for a 15-yard
touchdown on the second play of the 4th-Qtr. to make it 20-7 and set the stage
for late heroics by both teams.
    A ray of maize came down from the heavens, the first sunlight of Saturday briefly
bursting through the clouds as Michigan crossed the goalline for the first time on
Stonum's TD reception. The day's hardest rain helped UofM on the last drive with
Spartan defenders doing the slip-&-slide during a 12-play, 92-yard march that ended
when Roundtree TDed with 2-sec to go.
    The sunshine reappeared when Michigan State got Caper's winning touchdown
to touch off the celebration of MSU's first back-to-back wins over UofM in 42-years,
backin the glory days of the Duffy Daugherty era.    
    For the 37th time in the last 40 meetings the team with the most rushing yards
won this match-up. Due to a trio of Spartan defensive sacks, Michigan managed just
28 net rushing yards. State had 197 in 49 carries with Cousins getting 75, Winston
61, Caper 39, Martin 30 and Nichol 8-yards. Tate's 27 yards off scrambles were M's best.
    In the air Cousins went an efficient 15-of-21 for 152-yards, but two of his misses
went for INTs. Nichol was 5-of-8 for 68-yards. Forcier was 17-of-32 for 223-yards, 2-TD &
1-INT. Michigan back-up QB Denard Robinson was sacked in his only pass attempt.  
    Stonum caught five balls for 97-yards for Michigan. Blair White had six MSU grabs
for 49-yards.
    Going back to 1990, Michigan State improved to 99-30-1 when scoring 24 or more points.
    The home team won the rivalry contest for the 14th time in the last 18 get-togethers.
    The decision left both teams 1-1 in Big Ten play. Michigan's first loss of the year put
the Wolverines at 4-1. Michigan State's first victory since opening week put the Spartans
at 2-3 overall.
    A crowd of 78,629 watched.

MSU H-COACH MARK DANTONIO:   "Kirk Cousins tweaked his ankle a little bit, so Keith
[Nichol] played very well, I felt. We ran the football effectively. Defensively, you can't
say enough about how our defense played. It got a little scary at the end of the game
and we gave up the one big play. Credit Forcier on that last drive - just making plays,
running around, and doing different things. But it was chaotic out there...Larry Caper's
run at the end of the game was huge. I'm extremely happy for our football team and I'm
very proud of our team and how we represented and how we continued to play."

MSU RB LARRY CAPER:   "First of all, it was a team effort - linemen, quarterbacks,
everybody. We faced a lot of adversity coming in and going into overtime...It's a
zone play [on his winning TD], whatever the running back feels cut back, outside,
it's whatever you feel. If you can score, you score...when you see the end zone open
like that and nobody playing there it's the score...Honestly, I don't remember the play.
But it was a surreal feeling."

MSU QB KEITH NICHOL:   "It's a dream that you have when you are a little kid - it's what
I dreamed of. I think the game lives up to the hype of Michigan vs. Michigan State. This
win came at a great time. We needed it real bad, and these guys played through all the
adversity that they faced throughout the entire game. I'm really proud of everybody and
I love my teammates and Kirk [Cousins] played a great game."

MSU RB GLENN WINSTON:   "It was intense. We came out to win it, so I doesn't matter
how it ended...We just beat Michigan. That sums it up right there. This just set the
tone for the rest of the year now."  

MSU WR KESHAWN MARTIN:   "[Asst.] Coach [Don] Treadwell just told us to be physical
and toughen the running game. Especially for Michigan, you are going to come and out
and be physical. We talked about that a lot...It feels good. I haven't lost to [UofM] yet
so we're going to keep it to 3-0 next year."

MSU WR BLAIR WHITE:   "Its probably one of the greatest things I felt in my life. We should
have had a victory earlier, on the offensive side of the ball. We could have made it 27-6 at
one point."

MSU LB GREG JONES:   "The guys never put their heads down and we needed that...
We are so happy for Ruck and all the defensive backs. They did everything they could to
win this game."

UM H-COACH RICH RODRIGUEZ:   "Sometimes the youth helps you sometimes it hurts you
but I'm really proud of the way Tate [Forcier] battled. He made a few big plays at the end
there. We never got into rhythm the whole game but at least we hung around long enough to
have a chance...We couldn't run the ball. Some of it was that we couldn't get into a rhythm.
We didn't have the ball and when we did they kept us to three and outs...The disappointing
part is that we played good defense for a while but it was the third downs that killed us. It
was third and longs, a lot of third and longs cost us. I don't know how many times the
quarterback scrambled and got first downs and that's very frustrating when you play two
good snaps and the third snap they get a big first down. They really controlled the game and
never allowed our offense to get into a rhythm. They battled and we battled and we just
didn't make plays when we had to."

UM QB TATE FORCIER:   "Our team doesn't give up. We're going to keep fighting until the
game is over. It showed. We can't win all of them, but our guys kept fighting."

UM RB BRANDON MINOR:   "[Forcier] showed a lot of heart and character, especially
being a freshman. I told him to keep his head up; we still have the rest of the season
to go. I don't think he blamed himself of that last {INT], but I know he felt bad about it."

UM TE KEVIN KOGER:   "They played a great game, and we didn't play how we expected
to play. We lost, that's all I can say, and we just have to rebound...You can't blame
anyone right now, everyone played the best that they could...We wanted to get out there
and show them what we can do, but the Michigan State defense did a great job of keeping
us off the field."

UM DE BRANDON GRAHAM:   "It was a good game. It was a dog fight. It was hard...
They look up to this game just like we look up to this game. I think both teams did a
good job...We knew it was going to be a close game because we weren't going to stop
fighting and that's exactly what we did. And I thought that Michigan State came out
with a game plan. They came out and did it."



    Wayne State improved to 5-1 for the first time since 1976 in winning a Saturday
Homecoming shootout over Ashland, 47-40.
    Joique Bell's sixth touchdown of the game came on a 45-yard pass from Mickey
Mohner with just 30-sec on the clock to give Wayne the win.
    WSU trailed 33-20 at halftime after allowing 323-yards to the Eagles. The Warriors
then held the visitors scoreless in the 3rd-Qtr to tie the game 33-all.
    Bell's TD reception was his only catch of the game. He also ran 32 times for 272-
yards with five touchdowns of 1, 5, 3, 5 and 44-yards. Bell's long TD rush gave WSU
a 40-33 advantage with 5:56 to play.
    The five rushing and six total touchdowns by Bell are both new Wayne State
records for a single game. Bell passed NFL HoFamer Walter Payton as he moved into
9th place in NCAA-D2 career scoring.    
    Ashland QBack Billy Cundiff was 27-for-36 for 331-yards and four touchdowns.  
Cundiff's final TD toss was a 5-yarder to Mike Knueven which briefly tied the game
40-40 with 56-sec left.                   
    Wayne stayed in a tie for second place in the GLIAC with a 4-1 league record.
Ashland is now 3-3 overall and 3-2 in GLIAC play.



    Central Michigan beat Buffalo 20-13. Chippewas QBack Dav LeFevour threw for
268-yards and two touchdowns and, in the process, broke Byron Leftwich's MAC record
for career completions (939) in the 1st-Qtr. Central improved to 4-1 overall and 2-0
in the MAC. Buffalo fell to 1-4 and 0-2.
    Temple topped Eastern Michigan 24-12 in Ypsilanti. Bernard Pierce ran for 180-
yards and a pair of 1st-Qtr touchdowns for the Owls. The only Eagles TD came with
only 1:39 left in the game when Terren Blevins plunged over from a yard out. Eastern
remained winless at 0-4 and 0-1 in the MAC. Temple is now 2-2 and 2-0.
    Northern Illinois rolled over Western Michigan 38-3, scoring on a 74-yard touchdown
drive to open the game and dominating the contest. Chad Spann rushed for three Huskies
touchdowns. The only Broncos score was a 40-yard John Potter 2nd-Qtr field goal. WMU
slipped to 2-3 overall including 1-1 in the MAC. NIU is now 3-2 after winning its MAC opener.



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