Thursday, November 13, 2008

MSU gets rest before showdown

EAST LANSING (AP) — Mark Dantonio and Brian Hoyer were on the same wavelength, as all good coaches and quarterbacks should be. They agreed that a bye in Week 12 would be no good if Michigan State hadn’t gotten past late losses and self imposed limits. The wins include a 21-7 victory over Purdue last Saturday.

“Without great adversity, there can be no great success,” Dantonio said Tuesday at his weekly media session. “I really believe that. It helps you become stronger and see things more clearly when you have problems. There is no easy road to the top, regardless of what your profession is.”

With just one defeat from September through November, the No. 18 Spartans (9-2, 6-1 Big Ten) hold a half-game lead over No. 10 Ohio State and No. 7 Penn State in the conference and can get no less than a share of the title with an upset in 11 days at Penn State.

No Michigan State team has ever won 11 times, but this year’s Spartans have done just enough to keep the dream of a BCS game very much alive.

“The Rose Bowl is our ultimate goal,” Dantonio said. “If we win next week, we move one step closer to getting there, whether it’s a year from now or two years from now or three years from now. You can point back and say, ‘We had an opportunity here.’ ”

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