Maxwell vs. Cook: As I wrote, everything else, until the games begin, was just noise

I’ve written a few columns over the years that have missed. The Alex Carder-over-Kirk Cousins piece for the Kalamazoo Gazette in August 2011 certainly wasn’t prophetic.

This, however, I could see coming.

Aug. 8 headline: Daily QB chatter just noise until games begin.

It turned out to be dead on. Andrew Maxwell is the starter for Michigan State at quarterback. It’s hard not to feel good for him. He appears to be a good guy, with a tough gig last year, and has handled this scrutiny extraordinarily well.

He’ll have to keep the job against Connor Cook on Saturdays and we’ll all see the competition.

Damion Terry, unless these guys flop, is headed for a redshirt. Smart. Tyler O’Connor is No. 3.

“We’re always going to play the best player,” Mark Dantonio literally just said. “I think Andrew has proven he is that guy.”

We’ll see. But at least now we’ll actually see.

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27 Responses to Maxwell vs. Cook: As I wrote, everything else, until the games begin, was just noise

  1. avatar Spartan 81 says:


  2. avatar John says:

    Most experience. Most to prove in that last year had a lot to do with inexperienced receivers that held back passing game. Now well see if that is true.

  3. avatar NJ Rob says:

    This QB race will make each of them tougher mentally, but nobody should forget that these four young men were top High School QBs, nor that each of them must be spending a lot of quiet time trying to mentally wrap their head around the very public situation/tryout. Hopefully they have good family support and keep things in perspective.

    On this note, I wonder how many of them have read Cousin’s book “Game Changer”? Graham, you should do an article on it. I hope that they each have read it because the parts about “football doesn’t define you” and “football is a game of highs/lows” are very relevant for even them, especially now, not just the targeted 15 year old reader.

    I am 3/4 through the book as I wanted to pre-read it before giving it to my 13 year old who is active in sports. I wanted to make sure that religion wasn’t forced onto these young readers who admire Cousins as a player and should be allowed to make up their own minds on religion/life. The book does a really good job of laying it out there without jamming religion/Bible down anybody’s throat. It’s a worthwhile read and good reminder of how Cousins is an impressive young man, ex-Spartan.

    The read is also a quasi painful reminder of just how close MSU was to getting to the Rose Bowl…our time will come.

    • avatar The most interesting man in the world says:

      The women at my table say NJ Rob needs to be far more concerned with what Brady Hoke is about to jam down your throat on November 2

      Stay Thirsty my friend.

      • avatar NJ Rob says:

        Ok, that makes sense. Clearly another UM fan who graduated from….wait for it….nowhere.

        I would get ready for two straight losses in football and another 1-2 beatdowns in hoops in the next 15 months. You will need some Dos Equis to handle the mental anquish of losing to a superior opponent, and oh, don’t forget to bring the trophy on Nov 2. It misses home.

        • avatar The most interesting man in the world says:

          The women at my table admire my tales of Trojan adventure, If I punched you in the face you would have to fight off the urge to thank me

          Stay Thirsty my friend

      • avatar MSU Owns Beilein says:

        no usually Brady takes it down the throat, you can tell by his high pitched voice

    • avatar Spartan 81 says:

      From the wrapping paper and the fact that I graduated from Holland Christian, I think that I am going to find that is the birthday present from my mother tomorrow morning.

    • avatar Spartan 81 says:

      I went to High School there, those people go by example and let you make your own decision Rob

    • avatar Trophy says:

      There are no ex-Spartans, only former-Spartans…..

  4. avatar Spartan 81 says:

    Dantonio is closer to the situation than any of us, maybe he has seen improvement in Maxwell that none of us have seen yet, in any event everyone will play and the important date in my mind is Tuesday 09/17 when all the facts are in and Dantonio has considered all of his options based on game experience.

  5. avatar Old Fan says:

    Evidently Maxwell did not show all that well in practice or there would not have been the debate. When you say the problem was he didn’t get enough game reps the year before; I guess that could be the same excuse this year if Cook plays as he had no chances before the bowl game despite Maxwell’s and the team’s performance. When Pryor came to Ohio as top recruit, he was in benching a senior who lost one game the year before and was all Big I believe. Can almost say same about Miller and ND QB last year. Facts are, right or wrong, Dantonio is conservative and seniority matters. Unless Dantonio has changed, Terry will have no experience next year in line behind three others.

    • avatar The most interesting man in the world says:

      And that is why the women at my table long to see Dantonios contract extended
      Hoke will make the ground shake as his footsteps near Spartan Stadium on Nov 2

      Stay Thirsty my friend

      • avatar headeast says:

        There’s a joke in that line, somewhere, young man…

      • avatar Ghost of Biggie says:

        Hoke makes the ground shake from several tons of flab. Don’t let Captain Ahab know he’s on the loose

      • avatar MSU Owns Beilein says:

        The ground shakes cause Hoke is big as an elephant, someone get that man a bra for crying out loud

        • avatar reality check says:

          You won’t be laughing like that when Gardner lights you up for 300 yards Berlien I am banking on that Nov 2

          • avatar Spartan 81 says:

            That’s a damm foolish wager with our defense reality check, but I heard the saying a fool and his money are soon parted

          • avatar MSU Owns Beilein says:

            hey Mark, when you lose that 50 grand, will that cost you a Bentley or a trip to Europe, I’m thinking so. Gardner will throw at least 2 pics and he’ll try to run and get his ass whooped like dreadlocks did vs that stout MSU D. Hell scUM couldn’t even score at TD last year with dreads at the big outhouse, Gardner is gonna run for his life and become some of the spartan turf, just like last time he was there.

  6. avatar Spartan 81 says:


    Could you reprint that Gardner –Cousins piece for us before the game ?

  7. avatar MayoSpartan says:

    Wait and see is a sound approach, and I am looking forward to the 2013 season’s start tomorrow… well, the next day for some of us.

    All the recent MSU QB coverage by Graham, Joe R., Drew Sharp, Matt Charboneau and John Niyo are mearly speculative. No one has seen a practice or scrimmage since the spring, just like the rest of us. We haven’t a clue what to expect at QB.

    All I know is that Coach Dantonio is pretty damn good and brutally honest to admit a mistake in not playing Maxwell more in 2011. I expect that mistake will not reoccur, and this season will not have QB conflict as perceived with Nichols and Cousin.

    I for one hope to see two QB’s used in situations that dictate a mobile QB threat. Nebraska feasts on pocket passers and grooming a mobile QB for our game in Lincoln may be what we are witnessing.

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