East Lansing, Mich— Many college football enthusiasts tuned in to ESPN today, as the #13 Michigan State Spartans hosted the #24 Boise State Broncos, and watched MSU junior running back Le’Veon Bell put on a Heisman worthy performance.
Bell carried the Spartans to a record of 1-0, as he ran the ball 44 times for a total of 210-yards and two touchdowns, and also caught six balls for 55-yards.
Coming into this game people that surround the MSU program knew that the defense would carry this team and Bell would be the driving force of the offense, but I don’t think that anyone expected it to be like this.
While Bell gave all he had and some in this opening season game in Spartans Stadium, truthfully, I’m not so sure that’s what Spartan fans wanted to see.
50 touches is a lot for any player, even for a man of Bell’s size, but MSU had no choice if they wanted to win this game.
With quarterback Andrew Maxwell struggling in his first career start, throwing three first-half interception, and wide receivers Tony Lippett, who dropped a pass that caused a Boise St. interception, and Bennie Fowler not being big factors, the MSU coaching staff had to lean on Bell.
MSU fans wanted to see what Maxwell was all about especially since he is the replacement of arguably the Spartans best quarterback of all-time Kirk Cousins, and his play tonight may have Spartan fans a little worried. While this one game won’t make or break Maxwell, he did not look sharp in his first career start. If the Spartans want to find themselves in the Rose Bowl or National Championship Maxwell and the receivers must produce.
With the Spartans passing attack being up in the air, it seems as if Bell will get these type of touches every week.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to predict that the more touches Bell has the greater the risk of injury. Bell being injured is definitely something the Spartans offense cannot afford.
However, Bell might not be the only affected by his HUGE role in the offense, the offensive line will end up having troubles of their own down the road.
I’ve never played tackle football in my life, but I know the game well enough to know that run blocking is one of the hardest things to do in this game, and if the offensive line is going to be run blocking about 6o times a game then they may not have any gas left, or any bodies left for that matter, come the later stages of the season.
Not only does the success of Le’Veon Bell rest on the shoulders of the Spartans passing attack, but the success of the team does as well.
Having an effective passing attack opens up the running game more, keeps the o-line from getting beat up, and keeps the defense guessing.
If the Spartans don’t develop that attack a little sooner then they might be digging themselves out of a lot of holes once Big Ten play roles around.