Michigan State Defensive Line Coach Ron Burton Talks About Emerging Spartans
Coach Burton: He (Demetrius Cooper) shows that he’s got the ability. I think he’s got to continue to understand what the game is all about at defensive end. But he works his tail off. What I’ll see from him, hopefully, is the ability to get stronger and understand what defense end truly entails in the Big 10.
Q: It did Demetrius Cooper a world of good having that redshirt year. He still looks pretty raw out there, but…
COACH BURTON: Most definitely. His ability to make plays has been key for him. He has a lot of natural ability, he can sense things and makes good decisions. What he continues to do is understand the running game and what everybody else is doing around him. Natural things. He’s gotta continue to get better in the run game. But with his strength and his ability and the use of his hands, you can tell that he can get things done both as a pass rusher, but even more now you can tell that he has the ability to get off the box with his hands. So I think that’s where his improvement needs to come from and he’s already showing that this spring.
Q: Is Clemons a guy that can play more downs this year?
COACH BURTON: He’s a run game guy right now. What we gotta improve upon with him is his ability to play in the pass game, so we’ll see what he does in there. But right now he’s got great opportunities running with the 1’s and the 2’s. Very strong.
Q: Do you feel Kittredge has done some good things to bounce back?
COACH BURTON: The key for him is consistency and that’s what he’s gotta get consistent with. He’s gonna have every opportunity to do that, so we’re looking forward to seeing him do that. He’s still a work in progress, that’s for sure.