September 5, 2009
Video: Narduzzi, Treadwell on win over Montana State
EAST LANSING - Michigan State offensive coordinator Don Treadwell was impressed with the play of his two red-shirt sophomores Kirk Cousins and Keith Nichol and defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi thought his secondary did a solid job against Montana State, but both Spartan coaches saw room for improvement during the Spartans' season-opening 44-3 win at Spartan Stadium.
"A win is a win," said Narduzzi, whose defense held Montana State to 160 yards of total offense and field goal. "Defensively, I thought that we were okay but we still have a ways to go. It's always good to get that first test under your belt. We had a lot of guys play out there today, which is good, and we can find out how our depth is."
Michigan State rotated players in and out of the game at every position. The liberal substitution pattern gave several young players a chance to get their first taste of action. But with playing for the first time came some mistakes on both sides of the ball.
First-time starter Jerel Worthy was strong his first start at defensive tackle, but early on even Worthy who appears like he will be a future star on the defensive line was not without some early jitters.
"They were there, no question about it," said Narduzzi. "Even coaches get jitters. The games is a game and they better be nervous, but you expect them to play through it."
Worthy was not the only player on defense seeing his first time in an actual game. Brynden Trawick, Trenton Robinson, Drew Stevens, Steve Gardiner, Jeremy Gainer and Chris Norman all experienced their first taste of actual game experience at Spartan Stadium.
There were even more first-time players on offense, as Edwin Baker, Larry Caper, Dion Sims, Ethan Ruhland, John Deyo, Chris McDonald, and Myles White all played for the first time.
"We had a lot of young players who kind of got their feet wet for the first time," said Treadwell. "Obviously at running back, those three guys all had first-game experience. Dion Sims had a touchdown today, so it was really nice to be able to do that, but that was already the game plan."
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