Five key issues for Michigan State’s defense

Michigan State opens its season Friday, Sept. 4 at Western Michigan. Here are five key issues facing the Spartans’ defense.

Dantonio’s best

Coach Mark Dantonio can’t remember when he’s had a defensive line as good as this Michigan State crew appears to be. Led by fifth-year senior end Shilique Calhoun, the defensive front will be the heart of the Spartans’ defense as talent and depth are evident at each position. Fifth-year senior Lawrence Thomas makes the move out to end and seems primed for big things while sophomore Demetrius Cooper has a high ceiling. Inside, fifth-year senior Joel Heath and Damon Knox are steady while it is expected that sophomore Malik McDowell will have a huge impact. Other young players will continue to push, as well, including redshirt freshmen Enoch Smith Jr. and Craig Evans, and freshman Raequan Williams. – Read more at

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