Answering your Michigan State Football Questions and Emails B1G Championship game edition…

Hondo, how would you compare Connor Cook in his development and potential with where Kirk Cousins was after his first year as a starter? I understand that Cook has a much better defense which has allowed him to win more games but I am still hopeful that Cook will have similar success as Cousins did. Sean Klaver

I think this is a good question, but with a faulty premise.  They are different QBs.  MSU, after the 66 team, languished for years trying to be that 66 team.  I think we need to ask Connor to be the best Connor Cook he can be and NOT Kirk Cousins.  Max Bullough isn’t Percy Snow and Shilique Calhoun isn’t Bubba.  All four of those men are talented, but different.  Connor is farther along as a QB at this point in his career, but a different QB.  I hope that makes sense.  Bubba Smith was a great friend of mine and he said something once that really resonated with me.  Back in July of 2011 he said, “We spend too much time in the 60’s people.  This is a new century.  Let’s live with these kids today and get some Rose Bowls now.”

Hondo, I’ll throw this out there and then you can wax prophetically. I’d like to get your 2c worth on this. MSU has been getting so good in the secondary, seemingly better every year. And now this year – with lights out no-fly quality coverage and great tackling. So, is it great recruiting, great player development, or great coaching? I know, it’s all those, but elaborate if you would. Bleedgreen, Randy Schaetzl

Great question.  Well, if you look at the players’ “rankings” you wouldn’t be impressed, but they don’t look at that.  Soon a kid on D with an MSU offer will get an automatic bump in his rankings.  I think they look for a certain type of player and part of that player is he must take coaching and be hungry.  So, I give the credit to coaching for being able to find that player, developing that player, and finally the player being willing to put the work in to make it happen.

Hondo, do you think Coach Dantonio’s taking a knee in five B10 games in enemy territory going to hurt our at large BCS chances if heaven forbid we lose to OSU? Grant

It could, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.  Let me explain.  A few years ago, Mark Dantonio and I discussed his penchant for doing that.  He told me then, “I have too much respect for the game of football, those other players and coaches to run the score up.  If everyone there knows what you could have done, I just prefer to do it with respect.”  In a dishonorable and unprincipled world, I salute honor and principle.  Agree or not, his reasons are the right reasons.


Hondo, I see helmet decals on the football players, but I was curious what they stand for?  Melanie

A block S is for a team goal and a spear is when they have an individual accomplishment.


Hondo, in your last Q&A you mentioned that Max would be one of only 5 players since 1966 that could have played on that team. Who are the other 4? Nathan Husted

Darqueze Dennard, Percy Snow, Dan Bass, Harlon Barnett.  Remember that this DOES NOT mean that MSU hasn’t had other great players.  It simply means they couldn’t have replaced guys on that defense.


Hondo, I’d like to hear your thoughts on why you keep referring to Nebraska as a top four program? David Herc


They have what many believe to be the best fan base that will give ANY amount of money for any facility.  They have an amazing education that they offer and they sell out their stadium not for big games, but for GENERATIONS…Win or lose.  Nebraska does not have a big population base, but it sells itself.  Not difficult to recruit to at all.  Their retaining of Pelini (if they really do) is an acceptance of mediocrity and it is a sign of surrender to the Big Ten.


Hey, Hondo, long time Spartan fan, 1st time emailing. Should OSU beat us next week (I’m doubtful that they will), what are MSU’s chances of making the Rose Bowl, given Wisconsin’s loss and OSU’s win? Sincerely, Michael Garnett

Excellent.  I already have booked and paid for my airfare.


So Hondo, what excuse do you think the Big Ten will use for not suspending the OSU players who threw punches Saturday?  Looking at replays it was obvious that multiple players from both teams were involved.  Many more than were kicked out of the game.  I do not believe the conference will penalize OSU in any meaningful way.  I also believe that if the situation were reversed MSU would have multiple suspensions to be served during the championship game. What do you think?  Max McDonald Sr.

I expect them to say that since the punches were thrown in the first half and the players were ejected then that there will be no further punishment.  If this was any other Big Ten team NOT named OSU or UM I would expect different results.  Privately, I can tell you the sentiment in other Big Ten athletic offices agree with me, but can’t say it in public.  I used to laugh at these assertions until I got to know so many people in other offices around the Big Ten and some that WORKED there.



There you go everyone.  That is this week’s question and answer article.  If you have a question never hesitate to email at and put in the subject line FB Q/A

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 B1G Championship game edition…” Subscribe

  1. sparty1215 December 3, 2013 at 2:38 pm #

    Hondo who were the linebackers on that 66 team I remember Webster and Mad Dog. Where do you see Van Pelt and Banmks fitting?