5 ways we can win or lose to Michigan State

Posted: September 6, 2013 in Football

This is going to be a huge game for the Bulls.  After getting embarrassed at home, they have a lot to do to right the ship.  Hitting the road and facing a team no one is giving a chance against will wake them up.  Here are some ways they could win this game, but also a lot of ways they could fall again. 

5 ways we win this

Team speed

USF has a lot of speed on the roster, speed that MSU didn’t see in their season opener.  This is something the Bulls have to take advantage of.  Derrick Hopkins, Chris Dunkley, Marcus Shaw, all have incredible speed and bring something that the Spartans don’t see all the time.  The Bulls have to use it to their advantage in this game and get the ball in space, allowing their legs to carry them.  Quick passes, like screens, could help get the ball out fast and allow for easy yards.

Front 7 on defense

Where were they in the first game? Reshard Cliett showed up, but no one else did.  No sacks and no pressure on McNeese State, not the way the strength of defense wanted to get the year started.  If USF wants to win this game and actually try and stand a chance, the front 7 has to do better and get to the quarterback.  USF needs the front 7 to do their job and not leave the inexperienced secondary exposed.

Upset bug

We’ve done it before.  Auburn, Notre Dame, FSU, USF been on the road before when no gave us a shot and shocked the world, can we do it again?  USF is facing a team in MSU that has a lot of talent, is part of a big conference, and is favored by over 20 points.  Can we win this game, yes we can.  USF has the talent to stay in the same stadium as MSU and possibly get the upset, they just to play ever snap like its their last.

Andre Davis/Sean Price

Davis and Price are our big weapons in the passing game and need to live up to their reputation.  Davis is our big receiver and will be the primary target on the outside.  Price, who had one catch in the opener, and will need to have a much bigger impact in this game.  Tight ends are suppose to have big years in this offense, time to start having one.

Team Confidence

We got rocked against McNeese, there is no question about it.  Coach Taggart said the team is mentally fragile and right now, confidence is fairly low.  But after being humbled like we were last Saturday and a full week of prepping, the team should be ready for this game.  If they can come out, have a few positive plays and get the confidence they need, they  could sneak out of East Lansing with a win.

5 ways we lose this

Road game

Time to hit the road.  USF showed they couldn’t get the job done at Raymond James and looked bad in the process.  Now on the road at a new venue against a team that will have a huge fan base behind them, it could rattle this young team.  If they can’t get it together, remained focused, and focus on the task at hand, it could get ugly.

Michigan State defense

The Spartans are one of the best defenses the Bulls will face all year.  MSU has a great defense line and some of the best linebackers around, so the USF offense could struggle moving the ball.  If the quarterbacks can’t get the ball out and the run game is shut down, the Bulls won’t be able to come back late in a game.  USF has to get some consistency and work their way down the field.  If they can’t manage that, grab a few more beers.

Ball control by MSU

MSU is going to run the ball, slow the game day, and control that clock.  MSU doesn’t run up the score, but grinds people down and with a thin USF defense, it could be a death sentence.  The Bulls couldn’t get off the field on third down against the Cowboys and now face a team that will own the clock and just work their way down the field and eat it up.  If USF can’t get a stop here and there, the offense will be watching from the sidelines.

QB play

Floyd was bad and we saw Eveld come in during mop up duty against the Cowboys? Who is our starter?  Coach Taggart said before the year started that Floyd was the guy and had all the faith of the staff, but now it is wide open again.  If Eveld goes in and struggles, we will find ourselves right back at square one.  Without a reliable starter, life will be hard and against Max Bullough and the Spartan defense.

Run game of MSU

The Spartans run the ball well behind their big offensive line and if the Bulls play the run like they did against McNeese last week, oh boy.  180 yards to McNeese State was awful and now we are facing a team that makes a living running the ball.  USF better swarm and protect the gaps because if they are giving up 4 or 5 yards on a carry, might as well fuel up the plane for the ride back.

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