Answering Your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…

Hondo, you have seen Terry play and the majority of us have not. Obviously, some of us need to calm down or else we are going to be disappointed if he doesn’t win back to back Heisman’s before going pro mid-season. With a measure of realism, how good is Terry? Is he capable of starting and leading a winning team? He reminds you of _____ . Does he run like Denard, pass like Dan Marino and have character like Kirk Cousins? Scott in Florida

Great question. Terry is barely a freshman in college so I hesitate to use comparisons, I would say he is NOT there yet, but reminds me a lot of Randall Cunningham and Russell Wilson. I want to emphasize he IS NOT THERE yet. It won’t matter, some genius will run and say that I declared him that now, but he has the potential to be that. He is a great player, but there is more than one QB on this roster that could be a great player.

Hondo, two part question. Which game is the earliest that you think O’Connor could take over as the starter? Which game do you realistically think he could take over as the starter? David

Great question, David. If you take the entire body of work from the camp, he has had the best camp. Now, of course, you get more coach speak on the record, but that is what folks all over the program have agreed on. The earliest he could take over would probably be YSU on 9/14. Realistically, if there was a QB change I would think 10/5 at Iowa.

Hondo, I haven’t heard much out of you regarding the OL. I have gathered from listening to the coaches and from my friends that are still in EL that we have numbers and that 6 guys will be in the rotation. What I don’t know is that because we have a lot of parity or guys have really stepped up? If it is because the talent has stepped up, I see the large number of guys playing paying huge dividends as we can give a few plays off to the big guys and they all won’t have to play on special teams (which I think is the toughest thing for lineman). Eddie

First of all, I don’t expect Jack Allen back until the Notre Dame game. So that gives you a six man rotation. I know they like to get five guys and go, but his injury won’t allow that. I also want to say you are the only human being who has every accused me of NOT talking about the OL. Playing a lot of guys in a big rotation on the OL does not work. The OL is like a ballet only enjoyable. They have to move as one, work as one, and learn the unspoken nuances that make a well-oiled OL one of earth’s great beauties and things of wonder. Playing a ton of guys kills that. You want to get guys reps when the scores are up so miscues are not as costly. I am very much a buyer on this OL and the job that Coach Mark Staten and Coach Bollman have done.

Hondo, any thoughts on the three captains of Bullough, Dennard, and Treadwell? You said Bullough and Dennard were locks. Great call. Kyle

Great choices. All fine young men, all hard workers.

Hondo, are you shocked about Andrew Maxwell not being elected a captain? I am stunned. I have stood in his corner, but when he isn’t the clear winner of the job and not elected captain when does Dantonio move on? At the very least, not winning captain and not having clearly won the job has to make you pause and reflect, doesn’t it Hondo? Michael

To answer your first question, you have to ask Coach Dantonio. I make it a habit of not answering others questions. Secondly, of course you have to pause and reflect. Dantonio has told his team AT LEAST four times this year in private huddles when the media is NOT at practice that, “I don’t care who wins what job or who plays. We will play the best player at every position.” When your fifth year senior QB has yet to separate and isn’t reelected as a captain it is fair and germane to say you have to pause and reflect.

Hondo, can you see any scenario where Maxwell doesn’t start against WMU? Kevin

I think as Dantonio ponders this, there could be a chance that Connor Cook starts. I am not predicting that, but it would be fathomable to see it as something that could reasonably happen. I don’t expect it, but I don’t see it as wild expectation either like people claiming Terry will start.

Hondo, you keep saying that Terry won’t start. Can you tell us why you are so adamant? Do you not like him? Dan in Atlanta

Hi Dan, that is a super question. I am adamant because Dantonio has said that he won’t start a true freshman with no game experience. Listen, I think you start your best player and if he comes in the WMU game and is the guy, you start him moving forward. BUT you then have a big can of worms. If Terry is the starter you then place him in the same class as O’Connor and you very well have two QBs transferring in the spring and NOT just the probable one. As far as liking him I have a super relationship with Terry and I think he is a terrific QB and young man.

Hondo, I don’t hear much about Nick Hill. Is he simply out of the competition at RB? Gerome

I would not be shocked if he got good reps against WMU, but moving forward he is not the MSU RB. I guess a light can come on at any moment, but as of yet he has not taken the job and has had ample opportunity. Going back to the reps issue against WMU I am NOT predicting it. I am calling it possible because he is a senior and Coach has a sentimental heart for seniors.

Hondo, how do you rate this senior class from a leadership standpoint? I have heard much about that. Henry

Henry, I think they are a lot like the 2011 team. There is solid good leadership. The funny thing is that guys who are seniors and not getting all the love are still leading. There is no secret that Maxwell and Hill (not the only two, but certainly prominent) are battling, but unlike the 2009 senior class (that battled at spots) that derailed the MSU season, these guys are making it strong.

Hondo, is there any way you could give us an offensive, defensive, and special teams player who has had the best camp? Joel

Sure I can. On offense, Jack Conklin has been a monster. On defense, it is Darqueze Dennard and on special teams, it is Kevin Muma. All three have shined.

Hondo, you have mentioned a couple of times that Muma had his best year last season and had personal reasons and excuses as to why he could have had a bad year and battled through. Can you share those and will you? Would love to hear. Dennis

Can I? Yes. Will I? No. This isn’t TMZ. He had personal issues that are not in any way character or integrity related. Sadly, they are issues many people face and in that storm he shined like a ray of light. It was a tough year and I couldn’t be more proud of him and the young man he is, if he were my own son.

There you go everyone. Your weekly MSU Football Question and Emails. Thanks for being a part. If you every have a question please feel free to email me 24/7 at and put in the subject line Football Q/A. We may answer your question here or have you on the radio show to ask it yourself.

About Hondo S. Carpenter Sr.

View all posts by Hondo S. Carpenter Sr.
Hondo S. Carpenter, Sr. is the founder and publisher of and all of the family of services. The idea was birthed when overseas he ran into a Spartan not native to the United States who was wearing his Green and White proudly. He is dedicated to bringing you the latest and greatest information about Michigan State and Detroit Sports News every day. He resides in the Mid Michigan area. Follow Hondo on twitter here: @hondocarpenter.

One Response to “Answering Your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails…” Subscribe

  1. Just a Random August 22, 2013 at 12:57 pm #

    I feel for Maxwell. The coaching staff let him down by not getting him game reps before he was named the starter. Then, the OL had some injuries and looked like turnstiles in some games. The whole experience looked like it rattled Maxwell. Went for the safe quick throws and it didn’t help our WRs let the offense down with their drops and downfield blocking (lack of).

    I really hope Maxwell turns it loose and attacks with confidence. If he keeps doing what he’s done he’ll be passed by a younger guy.