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Michigan State Spartans vs N.D. Fighting Irish 09/17/2016

Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire

Scouting Notes

Michigan State Spartans vs N.D. Fighting Irish 09/17/2016

Michigan State Spartans v Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Notre Dame Stadium/South Bend, IN

Score:  Michigan State (36), Notre Dame (28)

Notable Prospects Entering the Contest

Notre Dame  Offense

DeShone Kizer, QB, Junior:  Kizer showcased a live arm that is capable of driving the football to any part of the field. He does a good job functioning in the pocket while sensing pressure and keeping his eyes down the field. Willing to hang tough in the pocket, Kizer will stand tall and make throws when he knows he is going to get hit. He sees the field fairly well and displays good deep and intermediate accuracy. He has a willingness to test man coverage and make leverage throws. On Kizer’s interception, he completely locked into his read and telegraphed the throw. Kizer did struggle executing quick game where his accuracy wavered due to inconsistent footwork and lower body throwing mechanics when in short drops. While not awful, Kizer’s throwing motion is a bit elongated and lacks efficiency. He is a solid athlete that is good with the ball in his hands to pick up yards with his legs. There is a creative element to his game when taking off in the pocket, designed QB runs and RPO’s. Stock:  Same

Mike McGlinchey, OT, Senior:  McGlinchey shows an all-around sound skillset that suggest he can be a potential starter at the next level. He held his own aside from a few reps against Malik McDowell. The best trait I saw from McGlinchey was quick feet and the ability to anchor and re-anchor. He has a good amount of power in his lower half to drive block and move people off the LOS. I sense that he is fairly flexible and does good job bending at his knees. He works hard to establish body positioning and work his hips and hands throughout the snap. When McGlinchey had negative reps it was due to failure to initiate first contact and not continuing to slide his feet and use his length to push rushers past the peak of the pocket. Stock:  Same

Notre Dame Defense

Isaac Rochell, DL, Senior:  Rochell plays with a strong, physical anchor that allows him to set a secure edge and play two gaps against the run. He shows steady hand usage while using his length and power to pressure the quarterback and unhinge from blocks. I believe he is a potential starting 5 technique in the NFL. Stock:  Same

Colt Luke, CB, Senior:  Luke played well early in the game but the negative reps kept piling up as the game progressed. He displayed good physicality throughout the contest which particularly effective early when he clicked on closed on a short completion to force a punt and a run play where he challenged the blocker to force the run back inside to the flow of the defense. As the game went on he failed to secure an interception and the ball was wrestled away resulting in a TD, allowed an inside release on a slant to convert a third down, whiffed on a tackle in the boundary and was flagged for DPI when allowing an inside release on a vertical route with no safety help. There were times I thought he was sticky in coverage down the field but his game lacks consistency.  Stock:  Down

James Onwualu, LB, Senior:  Onwualu was ineffective pursuing the ball laterally as a weakside defender where he simply got stuck in traffic and was late to the football. He did flash as a strongside defender, setting the edge and winning in small spaces to come off blocks and attack on the edge. He had an impressive pass breakup in zone coverage. Stock:  Same

Michigan State Offense

Tyler O’Connor, QB, Senior:  O’Connor has a live arm, capable of delivering the ball with velocity to any part of the field. With that said, his accuracy and ball placement is inconsistent. He does flash the ability to get into a rhythm and get the ball out on time but isn’t going to hang in the pocket and go through a full progression or read a defense and let that dictate the throw. He does have some skills to pick up yards with his feet and is effective moving the sticks with his legs. At best, O’Connor is a backup but he has some tools to work with. Stock:  Same

Michigan State Defense

Malik McDowell, DL, Junior:  McDowell has a skillset of a potential top-10 draft choice. He has a long, athletic build and plays with tremendous quickness and power. He is quick of the ball, plays with good leverage and knows how to win with his physical traits. He is stout and able to move laterally when playing the run. He is twitchy and has pass rush variety to get after the quarterback. He lines up all across the defensive line and makes an impact regardless of position.  This is a potential blue chip talent. Stock:  Up

Montae Nicholson, S, Junior:  Nicholson is a true hybrid safety who has zone and man coverage skills with the ability to contribute in the box. Nicholson plays with good physicality and attacks ball carriers with smart, effective angles. He shows click and close ability that forced an incompletion and was able to line up in man coverage in the redzone. Nicholson tackles well and offers scheme versatility. He looks good on the hoof and plays fast. He did underestimate Kizer’s athletic ability on the touchdown run but was sound otherwise. Stock: Up

Demetrious Cox, DB, Senior:  Cox was relatively unchallenged and quiet in this contest but his angles and tackling skills are noticeably lacking polish. Stock:  Same

Riley Bullough, LB, Senior:  Bullough was part of an active front that limited Notre Dame to only 2.3 yards per carry. He showed good flow to the football and zone coverage skills. He executed a few well-timed blitzes. He played with physicality and was able to slip blocks to make tackles in tight spaces. Stock:  Same

Other Players that Flashed

Tarean Folston, RB, Notre Dame, Senior:  Folston wasn’t a big part of the offense as a runner but did show good pass blocking skills and was effectively used as a lead blocker. Folston did show good physicality when he was given the ball.

Jarron Jones, DL, Notre Dame, Senior:  Jones showed the ability to play stout against the run, keep separation from blockers and use his length to disengage. He chased a play down over 30 yards down the field. He displayed good play strength to collapse the pocket and generate quick pressure. He did have a negative rep on the MSU’s 73-yard TD run where he was pushed out of his gap. There is potential here.

Josiah Price, TE, Michigan State:  Price showed good skills as an inline blocker to create running lanes and seal opponents in space.

Best Players on the Field

Malik McDowell, DL, Michigan State

Forgettable Performances

Colt Luke, CB, Notre Dame

Joe Marino

Joe Marino is the Assistant Director of NDT Scouting and co-host of the Draft Dudes Podcast. Marino began his career as the Assistant Editor for USA Today Digital Properties Draft Sites Network in 2011.

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