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Posted on: 10-17-2009

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    Halftime adjustments on both sides
of the ball overcame a lethargic first
half performance and Michigan State
avoided a potential Homecoming debacle
by beating Northwestern 24-14
Saturday afternoon.
    MSU trailed 7-0 at the break and then
scored 24 unanswered points in a span
of 10:29 to take control.
    State's top receiver all season, Blair
White had a career day with personal highs of 12 catches and 186-yards. White
gave the Spartans their first two scores on TD grabs of 22-yards and 47-yards.
    Another former walk-on senior, Zeke Markshausen of the Wildcats, also had  
career highs of 16 receptions for 111-yards including the final score of the
game, a 1-yard quick hit twirl pattern with 10:28 to play.
    Michigan State took the opening kickoff and Trenton Robinson returned it
47-yards to the NU 46. MSU then drove 8-plays and 45-yards just shy of the Wldcat
goalline. Curious play calling on a first-&-goal from the N'western four saw State
get stuffed four consecutive times on up-the-middle runs, the last two for no gain
from the NU 1-yard line.
    After that change of possession MSU went into an offensive funk and had four
straight three-and-outs. When MSU finally did get a drive going, freshman RBack
Edwin Baker fumbled the ball away at the Northwestern 20.
    The only scoring of the 1st-H was midway through the 2nd-Qtr on an 80-yard
drive where all nine NU plays were passing plays. Wldcat QBack Mke Kafka was 7-of-9
and found an open Andrew Brewer (the former Nw QBack turned WR) in the end zone
for a 15-yard touchdown.
    While a turnover foiled State's second best chance of the opening half, a Northwestern
turnover got the Spartans rolling early in the 3rd-Qtr. NU's Drake Dunsmore caught a
5-yard pass, but had the ball knocked loose by MSU's Chris L. Rucker at the State 35.
State's Adam Decker recovered at the 36 just 2-mins into the 2nd-H.
    The Spartans then tied the game on a 7-play/64-yard drive where QBack Kirk Cousins
found his rhythm and was 4-for-5, ending with White's 22-yard catch on an inside post
pattern .  
    Michigan State's next possession was an 8-play/87-yard march. White had a 3rd-&-10
catch for 11-yards get the ball out to the MSU 24. He then caught the 47-yard bomb for
the go-ahead TD.  
    MSU's third 3rd-Qtr possession went 9-plays, stalled, then a 28-yard Brett Swenson
field goal ended the quarter with a 17-7 Spartan lead. Swenson tied the school record
with his 62nd career FG.
    The game-breaker was Swenson's kickoff to start the 4th-Qtr. NU's Jeravin Matthews
fumbled his return and State's Larry Caper rushed for a 22-yard touchdown on the very
next play to make it 24-7.
    After a slow start Cousins went 21-for-31 for 281-yards, 2-TDs and no turnovers.
Caper ran 16 times for 71-yards and his 22-yard TD was the longest rush by either
team in the game. After having his redshirt designation dropped due to the season-
ending knee injury of Glenn Winston the week before, Baker rushed 12 times for 55-yards.
    Kafka was 34-of-47 for 291-yards and also rushed a game-high 18 times for 42 net yards.
Brewer had eight receptions for 104-yards.
     MSU's Eric Gordon had seven tackles in the 1st-Qtr and finished with a game-high 15
including a sack. State's Greg Jones added 14 tackles with a game-high nine solos and had
two of the game's three sacks.
    Michigan State's third consecutive victory put the Spartans at 4-3 on the season and 3-1
in the Big Ten. MSU is now 61-30-3 all-time on Homecoming. Northwestern is also 4-3 overall,
but just 1-2 in the conference. The Wildcats had won in their previous two visits to East


MSU H-COACH MARK DANTONIO:   "[Cousins] started playing with poise back there [in
the 2nd-H] and started throwing the ball on the money and ended up having a pretty big
game. Blair White also had a good game with 12 catches and a 186 yards, along with B.J.
Cunningham who had five catches. We had a couple missed opportunities in there but we
are a young football team and sometimes there are going to be mistakes."

MSU QB KIRK COUSINS:   "I was off in the first half. If I knew exactly why and what the
secret was to being on, I would have had it all figured out...I made a lot of mistakes today
that you just have to attribute to the fact that I'm learning and I have to correct those
... Our receivers are taught very well and we try to get those guys in a position to succeed.
When Blair [White] is trying to succeed and get high and have a good game, we try to get
him into an opportunity where he can make plays and have some success."

MSU WR BLAIR WHITE:   "In the first half we had the fumble and getting down on the[goal]
line when we didn't score. It's just a few plays. It always is and so we just have to execute
... As far as [him] getting the [dozen] passes, it was just the offense. We're just working
with the offense for the past couple of weeks so I try to help the team out a little bit."

MSU RB LARRY CAPER:   "Edwin [Baker] and I have two different running styles. We both
compliment each other really well. We can both cause problems for defenses."

MSU LB ERIC GORDON:   "They did a very good job at dinking us at every four or five
yards a pop. And when we came here in the second half we just had to switch some things
up and it pretty much worked for most of the plays."

NW H-COACH PAT FITZGERALD:   "They made plays. We didn't...I thought Zeke [Markshausen]
played well. I thought he gave us a chance. He's got great hands and finds a way to get open,
and he continues to work his tail off."

NW QB MIKE KAFKA:   "I felt the line played really well. We just have to execute a little
more and put some more points on the board...Zeke's a big time player. He goes out there
and plays every week...We just have to keep on giving him the ball because he's making
plays...They did a great job of defending it but I think that we can make that play a lot
more often than we did...It's frustrating but you've got to have a short memory. You
have to go back and get back after it because it's a long season and the next game up is
the most important one."
NW WR ZEKE MARKSHAUSEN:   "It's tough. I really don't know what to say. It is a tale of two
halves, it's a full game, it's 60 minutes. We've got to come in there and realize that it's going
to be a full game. We have to take advantage of all of the opportunities that we have and
try to minimize the mistakes that lead to points. We're disappointed, that's kind of assumed
when you lose, but we're going to come back.

NW SB DRAKE DUNSMORE:   "It felt like Michigan State made those [scoring] plays in a
finger-snap. It was kind of heartbreaking,"



    As expected, the Michigan Wolverines steamrollered second-tier Delaware State 63-6
Saturday afternoon in non-conference play.
    The Hornets exchanged a forfeit of a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference game (vs North
Carolina A&T) for a $550-thousand payday. UofM then shamelessly ran up school offensive
records of 442-yards in the 1st-H and 727-yards in the game. Michigan tied its record of
a 28-P/1st-Qtr, led 49-3 at halftime and posted their second biggest win since 1950 (69-0
over Northwestern in 1975).  UofM also tied a school record by not having to punt at all
in the rout.  
    After sufering a concussion last week, UM QBack Tate Forcier directed just one drive
and then sat back to watch as Michigan used three more QBacks in the scrimmage. Injured
UM RBacks Carlos Brown and Brandon Minor sat out.
    Michigan's Vincent Smith rushed for a career-high 166 yards and a touchdown. Michael
Cox had 82 rush yards and two TDs. Michael Shaw ran for 73 yards and a touchdown. Brothers
Kelvin Grady (reception) and Kevin Gady (rush) also scored Wolvrine TDs.
    Riley Flickinger had one field goal in each half for D-State's scores.
    Michigan is now 5-2 and Delaware State 1-4.



    For the second time in 15 days Wayne State RBack Joique Bell scored six touchdowns
to lead WSU to a 45-7 home rout over Ferris State Saturday afternoon.
    All of Bell's TDs came on the ground, so while the Benton Harbor senior tied his own school
record for TDs in a single game, he also broke his own WSU mark for most rushing touchdowns
in a game. (In an OCT 3RD 47-40 Homecoming win over Ashland Bell had six TDs including five
on the ground.)
    Bell had game-highs of 34 carries and 263 rushing yards. He also caught two passes for 42-
    Bell moved into 11th place on the all-time NCAA-D2 rushing yardage list, 10th in all-time
NCAA scoring (all divisions) and sixth in NCAA-D2 career scoring.  
    The lone Bulldog touchdown came on a 4-yard Chris Wilson reception to cap a short
33-yard drive that followed a Bell fumble.
    Wayne went 8-for-11 in third down conversions and Ferris just 1-for-10.
    Wayne is now 6-2 overall and 5-2 in the GLIAC. Ferris fell to 1-7 and 0-7.
    The decision halted a 7-game Bulldogs winning streak at WSU.  


    Central Michigan completed a 3-game sweep of its in-state rivals with a 34-23 win at
Western Michigan Saturday.
    The Chippewas previously edged Michigan State and routed Eastern Michigan. CMU
doesn't play the Michigan Wolvrines.
    The Chips were tied twice but never trailed the Broncos and Central's 27-13 halftime lead
proved to be enough.  
    CMU QBack Dan LeFevour ran for one touchdown and threw for two more. Bryan
Schroeder had a touchdown reception and a TD run for Cenral.
    Western QBack Tim Hiller threw for a pair of touchdowns and John Poter booted three
Broncos field goals.
    Hiller set several records in the loss, where he went 40-of-66 in the air for 410-yards. The
first of Hiller's TD passes set a new school career record of 88 and his second tied Hiller with
current NFLer Byron Leftwich for second most all-time in the MAC. Hiller set a new WMU
record with 879 career pass completions. He also broke his own record for most Bronco pass
attempts in a single game.  
    Central Michigan improved to 6-1 overall and remained perfect at 4-0 in the MAC. Western
Michigan fell to 3-4 and 2-2.


    Eastern Michigan remained winless with a 28-6 home loss to Kent State.
    Kent St. QBack Spencer Keith passed for a pair of 1st-Qtr touchdowns and later ran
for another.
    Joe Carithers kicked 1st-Qtr field goals of 30 and 25-yards for both Eagles scores.
    EMU is 0-6 overall and 0-3 in the MAC. Kent is 3-4 and 2-1.


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