UA, MSU to spar Thursday

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Both Alabama and Michigan State fans are ready for tomorrow night’s showdown in the 2015 College Football Playoff Semifinals.

ESPN’s comment section of the playoff preview between the Crimson Tide and the Spartans contains many comments that give respect to their opponents.

One MSU fan said this is a game that he was hoping for as a senior at the university.

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“Is it because I think Alabama is overrated — not at all? I think they’re the best team in college football. Michigan State has waited years for this moment. This is finally a real chance to prove we belong with the big boys. I don’t know if we will win, but I do think we can compete with the Crimson Tide. I think ultimately their defense will prove too much, but I expect Michigan State to inform the world regardless that we are not going anywhere anytime soon. If we get crushed, it’s basically back to square one. Good luck Bama fans.”

An Alabama fan wished the Spartans good luck in their match up.

“(I) Can’t wait for this game! Alabama has a chance for redemption after last year (after losing to Ohio State in the CFP semifinals). We went into last year’s game over confident and got the (loss). We (need to) stay focused and ready for a knock down drag out fight! But I have mad respect for MSU! If I had one team to lose to, its definitely you guys! Best of luck to the Green! See you in Dallas!”

Throughout the season, both teams have racked up similar numbers, including points per game. MSU averages 32.1 while UA averages 34.1. Alabama has a slight edge in average points allowed (14.4) compared to MSU’s 20.5.

Leading the pack on offense for each team are Alabama quarterback Jake Coker, MSU quarterback Connor Cook, Tide running back Derrick Henry and MSU wide receiver Aaron Burbridge.

Cook has thrown for 2,921 yards, 24 touchdowns and five interceptions. Coker has thrown for 2,489 yards, 17 touchdowns and eight interceptions.

Henry, the 2015 Heisman Trophy Winner, has rushed for 1,986 yards on 339 carries and scored 23 touchdowns.

In the air for the Spartans, Burbridge leads with 80 receptions for 1,219 yards and seven touchdowns.

Kick off is set for 7 p.m. CST on ESPN.

-Andrew Garner