Sunday, December 8, 2013
Big Ten helmet stickers: Week 15
By Josh Moyer
Recognizing the best and the brightest from the Big Ten championship game:
Michigan State QB Connor Cook: He was the MVP of the title game, and his role can't possibly be understated. When the running game sputtered early, he was there to pick up the offense. And when the Spartans trailed in the second half, he was there once again. Cook finished 24-of-40 for a career-high 304 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. It was the best game of his career, and it couldn't have come at a better time for MSU.
Ohio State's offensive line: The running game took off for the Buckeyes, something which doesn't happen too often against Michigan State. Jack Mewhort and Co. outplayed MSU in the trenches for much of the game, as Braxton Miller and Carlos Hyde combined for 260 yards on 39 carries. The Spartans entered Saturday allowing fewer than 65 rushing yards per game, but that seemed to be the only thing that really worked for OSU. Despite the loss, this offensive line deserves some recognition.
Michigan State RB Jeremy Langford: The Buckeyes hadn't allowed a 100-yard rusher all season, but Langford ran harder as the game wore on and finished with 128 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries. His 26-yard touchdown scamper late in the fourth quarter gave Michigan State a double-digit lead and put a damper on any OSU comeback hopes. He even added five catches for 21 yards.
Michigan State CB Darqueze Dennard: The Spartans' secondary limited Miller to 101 pass yards on 8 of 21 attempts, and Dennard was a big reason why. He recorded two pass breakups and a forced fumble and consistently blanketed Ohio State receivers, showing why he's one of the best cover corners in college football.