Indiana at Michigan State

No. 12 Michigan St. destroys Hoosiers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Michigan State collected two trophies and a spot in the first Big Ten Championship Game in one afternoon.

Yes, this was definitely a productive Saturday for the Spartans.

Kirk Cousins threw for 273 yards and three touchdowns in just over a half, leading the 12th-ranked Spartans to a 55-3 victory over Indiana in their home finale.

A few minutes after the game concluded, Michigan finished off its victory over Nebraska, locking the Spartans into the first Big Ten title game.

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"The journey isn't over -- we still want to finish this off," Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said. "But I want to congratulate the senior class for winning 35 games -- the winningest class in the history of Michigan State football."

The Spartans entered with a one-game lead in the Legends Division over Nebraska and Michigan, who were playing at the same time in Ann Arbor. When the Wolverines won, it clinched the division for Michigan State (9-2, 6-1 Big Ten) because of its 28-14 win over Michigan on Oct. 15.

Michigan's victory led to the unthinkable at Spartan Stadium -- a cheer for the Wolverines.

"The only trophy Coach let us look at this week was the one for the Indiana game -- the Old Brass Spittoon," Cousins said. "Our focus has always been to win this game and win next week and not need any help to get into the championship game. We got some help, but we still want to beat Northwestern and then take that momentum to Indianapolis."

Once the game was over, Dantonio let his team see the Legends Division trophy.

"This is special, because this is something we built," he said. "It wasn't here when we got here, but we brought in players that we thought could play, and they overachieved and bought into what we wanted to do."

Cousins hit B.J. Cunningham for a 7-yard touchdown on Michigan State's first possession of the second half, giving the Spartans a 41-3 lead. The senior handed off on the first play of the next drive, then was replaced by Andrew Maxwell.

Cousins saluted the Spartans logo at midfield before leaving to a large ovation. He finished 16 of 23, and now has 60 career touchdown passes, one short of Jeff Smoker's school record.

"We talked about leaving here the right way -- we've seen the basketball team do it, and we wanted to leave in style," he said. "To play a flawless game in our last game at Spartan Stadium, and then be in a position to just sit back and take in the whole second half -- that's a huge thrill."

Michigan State finished with 470 yards of offense to 234 for Indiana (1-10, 0-7), and forced the game's only two turnovers.

"I can't even tell you how excited I am right now," senior safety Trenton Robinson said. "We're the first team to ever win our way into the Big Ten championship, and we did with such a great game. ... This was the best moment of my career."

The Spartans scored on their first two possessions, thanks to a pair of big passes from Cousins to Cunningham. The first, a 37-yarder, led to a 21-yard field goal by Dan Conroy. On the second, Indiana's defense bit hard on a play-fake, leaving Cunningham alone behind the defense for a 63-yard score.

Another big play lifted Michigan State to a 17-0 lead after one. Cousins hit Keshawn Martin on the sideline, and the senior wide receiver avoided two poor tackles before racing into the end zone for a 47-yard score.

"Credit Michigan State - they are pretty good and they were ready to play," Indiana coach Kevin Wilson said. "But we had a very poor plan by us coaches and not very good playing from our kids."

Martin also scored on a 19-yard sweep and Edwin Baker's 10-yard run made it 31-3 late in the second quarter. Johnny Adams added an 86-yard interception return for a score in the third quarter.

By the end, Michigan State was comfortable enough to run an end-around for star guard Joel Foreman, who gained 3 yards before coming out for his own ovation.

"For me, the highlights are always going to be our four wins against Michigan," the senior said. "But it was great to go out and play the way we did today."

Dantonio said no one would sit out next Saturday's game at Northwestern, because the Spartans still have a chance to move up in the rankings before the Dec. 3 championship game in Indianapolis.

"We're not done," Robinson said. "We want to be 10-2 going into the championship game, and then we want to win that and go to the Rose Bowl."

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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WR Keshawn Martin celebrates after scoring on a 19-yard TD pass as the No. 12 Spartans drub IU to clinch a Big Ten title bid. (US Presswire)
WR Keshawn Martin celebrates after scoring on a 19-yard TD pass as the No. 12 Spartans drub IU to clinch a Big Ten title bid. (US Presswire)

 

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Scoring Summary
MISTDan Conroy 21 yd FG
MISTB.J. Cunningham 63 yd pass from Kirk Cousins (Dan Conroy kick)
MISTKeshawn Martin 47 yd pass from Kirk Cousins (Dan Conroy kick)
INMitch Ewald 22 yd FG
MISTKeshawn Martin 19 yd run (Dan Conroy kick)
MISTEdwin Baker 10 yd run (Dan Conroy kick)
MISTDan Conroy 33 yd FG
MISTB.J. Cunningham 7 yd pass from Kirk Cousins (Dan Conroy kick)
MISTJohnny Adams 86 yd interception return (Dan Conroy kick)
MISTEdwin Baker 3 yd run (Dan Conroy kick)
 
Team Stats
 INMIST
First Downs1222
Third Down Efficiency3-156-12
Fourth Down Efficiency0-20-1
Plays-Net Yards69-23665-470
Rushes-Yds37-9434-174
Passing Yds142296
Kick Return Yds19672
Punt Return Yds064
Passes15-32-221-31-0
Punts9-3683-142
Fumbles-Lost0-00-0
Penalties-Yds8-755-45
Time of Poss.29:5630:4
 
Individual Stats
RUSHING
IN: Stephen Houston 13-40, Kofi Hughes 3-17, Tre Roberson 10-12, D'Angelo Roberts 5-11, Matt Perez 2-6, Nick Stoner 1-6, David Blackwell 1-5, Dre Muhammad 1-2, Edward Wright-Baker 1--5
MIST: Le'Veon Bell 9-68, Edwin Baker 10-34, Nick Hill 5-30, Keshawn Martin 1-19, Larry Caper 5-16, Andrew Maxwell 1-4, Joel Foreman 1-3, Todd Anderson 1-1, Team 1--1
PASSING
IN: Tre Roberson 10-23-92-2, Edward Wright-Baker 5-9-50-0
MIST: Kirk Cousins 16-23-272-0, Andrew Maxwell 4-7-22-0, Peter Badovinac 1-1-2-0
RECEIVING
IN: Dre Muhammad 9-73, Kofi Hughes 2-27, Stephen Houston 2-26, Shane Wynn 1-11, Matt Perez 1-5
MIST: Keshawn Martin 8-99, B.J. Cunningham 6-132, Brian Linthicum 2-12, Le'Veon Bell 1-23, Garrett Celek 1-21, Keith Nichol 1-4, Brad Sonntag 1-3, Niko Palazeti 1-2
 

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