Many MSU defenders still fighting for backup roles

EAST LANSING – Nine of Michigan State’s starting 11 on defense were all but cemented at the start of preseason camp — it was 10 before senior linebacker Ed Davis went down with a season-ending knee injury — and linebacker Chris Frey (in Davis’ old spot) and cornerback Vayante Copeland are the leaders for the last two.

That’s not much in the way of uncertainty, and that’s life for a No. 5-ranked team. But there are some interesting battles for defensive snaps, reserves grappling with each other to be in the playing group. For example, the No. 3 defensive end likely will see some time, but it might not go much deeper than that because starters Shilique Calhoun and Lawrence Thomas likely will log heavy snaps. – Read more at

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