Dantonio: "There's a lot of different reasons for success"

After a season where the offense struggled for Michigan State, ranking 10th in the Big Ten and 109th nationally in scoring offense, Mark Dantonio pledged that the offense was going to make some changes.

“We need to change somewhat with the times, which will happen.” Dantonio said back on November 20th.

Changing with the times for Dantonio and his offensive staff doesn't mean abandoning their philosophy and going to the spread no-huddle or turning to the flexbone triple option. Instead, the staff has noted that small tweaks will be made within their system to help them as they move forward.

“There’s a lot of different reasons for success and for failure. A lot of it hangs on the smallest of details, so we just keep continuing to try and implement new things and try and become a little bit different to try and progress, but at the same time I think our foundation of who we are always has to stay the same so that we can play fast." Dantonio said in the Lansing State Journal.

“That doesn’t mean that we don’t move forward and try different things, but it does mean that we’re gonna stay basically the same.”

While the passing game struggled all year they were able to see some success in the run game with Le'Veon Bell ranking in the top 6 nationally in rushing yardage. So for Dantonio and his staff, it's not about changing the system, it's about evaluating the what they have in place and tweaking it to ensure their successful.

“When I talked about the change thing, it’s more about critiquing ourselves and asking ourselves what do we need, how can we get better? Some of those things can be addressed in bowl season, some of those things can be addressed in the spring or in the summer, but it certainly is not a wholesale change of any sort.”

As you look back and evaluate your season in the coming months, that may be an important lesson to keep in mind on both sides of the ball. Stick to your guns and find ways to tweak your scheme or philosophy instead of making wholesale changes following a season where you may have struggled.

Will Lance Guidry make college football history this bowl season?

With Willie Taggart departed for South Florida, defensive coordinator Lance Guidry well step in as the interim head coach for Western Kentucky as they face Central Michigan in the Little Caesar's Pizza Bowl on Dec. 26. 

That potentially put Guidry at an interesting place in college football history. Can anyone name another coach that has coached two bowl games as the interim head coach at two separate programs within two years?

Serving as an interim head coach is not an easy role, but Guidry's first go-round was a major success. After Mike Haywood left Miami (Ohio) for Pittsburgh after the 2010 season, Guidry stepped in to lead the RedHawks in against Middle Tennessee in the GoDaddy.com Bowl. Guidry's pre-game speech (featured below) blew up on the Internet and was featured on SportsCenter for weeks. The speech worked, as Miami won the game, 35-21. 

Guidry left Miami (Ohio) for the defensive coordinator role under Taggart at Western Kentucky. Guidry helped the Hilltoppers improve from 2-10 the year before his arrival to consecutive 7-5 seasons, capped by the program's first bowl game later this month. The coach immediately boosted WKU's defensive standing, dropping their scoring defense average from 33.2 points per game in the year before his arrival (99th nationally) to 24.8 points per game in 2011. Western Kentucky's total defense ranking has dropped from 69th in 2010 to 53rd a year ago and all the way down to 23rd this fall. 

Guidry is a "players coach". They love playing fo him and he gets the best out of his guys. Western Kentucky will do their diligence and consider a number of candidates; but their is no doubt they have a great coach in their locker room right now.

We're not sure what speech Guidry has up his sleeve for Western Kentucky, but here's betting it's a good one. 

Jim Mora: "We're preparing kind of like you would for a Super Bowl"

Every staff has their own way of making sure that their team goes into their bowl game prepared. Because of the 15 on the field practices that you're allotted, a lot of that planning has to do with when, and sometimes where, your bowl game takes place.

Jim Mora explained how him and his staff have set up their routine after their practice on Saturday.

As he explains, him and the rest of the UCLA staff planned a few days last week of just "skills and drills" which mainly consisted of drilll work and 7 on 7. Mora added that they'll also have a couple "generic practices" which will consist of "UCLA vs. UCLA" before they start to focus on Baylor. Beyond that, they'll start to get into to some tougher practices (similar to in season practices), and game plan type stuff the four days before leaving for the bowl game so that they have everything installed when they get San Diego.

That way, upon arriving in San Diego, they can just focus on tightening things up while they're enjoying the rest of the bowl festivities. As Mora explains, it's very similar to the way that teams prepare for a Super Bowl.

Army vs Navy motivational video

Rarely does a game that is so rich in history require any extra motivation to get a team hyped up. But records don't seem to matter in games like this, and anything can happen so the guys at Navy came up with this gem to get their guys hyped and focused before taking on Army.

Very well done, and a great way to cap off college football's regular season. Navy went on to win in a close one, 17-13.

Monday TV - Houston at New England

Two quality teams going at it tonight. The 11-1 Texans take on the 9-3 Patriots in what should shape up to be one of the biggest Monday Night Football games in recent memory. 

Eastern time listed.


Houston at New England - 8:30 - ESPN


No games (Bowl games start Saturday)

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