Michigan State First Half Thoughts

• The crowd filtered in a little late, probably due to the long lines to get into the sections. The student section, once again failed to fill in completely at all. But noise-wise, easily one of the loudest crowds I've heard here.

• The all-important rushing stat, UM 60 MSU 25. The winner in this series has led in rushing 39 of the last 42 games.

• Michigan's defense took control of the first MSU drive getting a 3 and out. The crowd clearly had an impact forcing a false start on 3rd down to back up the Spartans.

• Michigan's first offensive possession was halted by a personal foul penalty (late hit) on 1st down by Taylor Lewan. That backed Michigan up and forced a 3 and out.

• Denard had a rough start to the game on the ground going for 0 yards on his first 5 carries. It's clear that Michigan State's gameplan is to shut him down at all costs. Michigan moved the ball decently on their 2nd drive, but it stalled on a 3rd and long pass to Devin that was short of the first down.

• MSU's rushing game chipped away in the first quarter, getting only 3 yards per rush. Not to be outdone, Michigan averaged 1.9 yards on the ground in the 1Q.

• Michigan drew first blood in the game with a FG after an 11-play, 77 yard drive that featured a season-long 38-yard run by Fitz Toussaint, but stalled down in the redzone.

• Aside from one bad pass in the first half, which thankfully wasn't picked off, it looks like Denard's arm has shown up today. He just needs to keep finding Dileo, who has 3 catches for 72 yards so far. No throws to Funchess yet, though. No comment on whatever that was at the end of half. #armpunt

• Matt Wile's 49-yard FG at the end first half into a swirling wind was impressive. That kid has a monster leg.

• Michigan State's bread and butter, running between the tackles, typically gets 6-8 yards per carry. They're lucky to get 3-4 today. Part of it is Michigan State's OL not blocking well, most of it is Michigan shutting MSU down. Moar please.