|Height: 6-3 | Weight: 226 | College: Michigan State|
A 2005 semifinalist for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award, Stanton is an outstanding all-around athlete whose scrambling and running ability brought another dimension to the Spartans' spread offense. Stanton, known for his pinpoint accuracy, gave defenses fits with his ability to gain positive yardage with his feet. He reminds many of former NFL Pro Bowl quarterback Rich Gannon with his elusiveness and ability to throw rolling out of the pocket.
As a junior, Stanton became only the second player in school history to throw for more than 3,000 yards in a season. He was only the fourth MSU quarterback to complete 200 or more passes in a season, joining Jeff Smoker (2003), Jim Miller (1993) and Dave Yarema (1986). His accuracy as a passer is gaining him well-deserved national attention. His pass completion percentage of 64.18 is a school career record and he boasts two of the school's three best season completion percentage marks (64.1 in 2004 and 66.7 in 2005).
Stanton earned Super Prep, Prep Star and Max Emfinger All-American honors as a senior at Harrison High School. He was rated among the nation's top 20 quarterbacks by Super Prep, Student Sports Magazine, TheInsiders.com and ESPN.com's Tom Lemming and also ranked seventh among the country's top passing quarterbacks by USA Today's Max Emfinger. Stanton was listed among the Midwest's top prospects by the Detroit Free Press (No. 15) and Super Prep (No. 17) and ranked among the state's top seniors by The Detroit News (third), Lansing State Journal (third) and Detroit Free Press (sixth). He was also named to The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press Dream teams.
The two-year starter completed 234 of 357 career passes (65.5 percent) for 5,293 yards and 58 touchdowns and only nine interceptions while leading Harrison High to back-to-back state titles in 2000-01. He connected on 132 of 196 passes (67.3 percent) for 2,822 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior, as his passing yards and scoring tosses mark the fifth-best single-season totals in state history. He also rushed for 350 yards (47 carries) and nine scores in 2001. Stanton accounted for 259 total yards and three touchdowns in the 2001 state Division 3 championship game vs. Fruitport as Harrison capped off its perfect season (14-0) with a 28-6 victory, as he hit 14-of-18 passes for 210 yards and two touchdowns and scored on a 24-yard run in the second quarter.
Stanton completed 102 of 161 passes (63.4 percent) for 2,471 yards and 27 touchdowns as a junior. During that season, he threw for 163 yards and two scores and ran for another touchdown in a 42-0 win over East Lansing in the 2000 state championship game. Stanton also lettered in baseball as a shortstop/pitcher, batting .561 as a junior, including three homers and four triples.
Stanton redshirted in 2002 at Michigan State. He saw action in every game on special teams in 2003 for the Spartans, but was limited to only four appearances as a quarterback. He finished his redshirt freshman season with 39 yards on two of three passes, adding 42 yards. However, he suffered a knee injury covering a punt vs. Nebraska in the Alamo Bowl, undergoing reconstructive surgery.
Stanton appeared in 10 games in 2004, starting seven times. He missed the second half of the Michigan game and the entire Ohio State contest with a shoulder separation. But Stanton still completed 141 of 220 passes (64.1 percent) for 1,601 yards, eight touchdowns and six interceptions. He also proved to be a dangerous runner, carrying 96 times for 687 yards (7.2 avg) and five scores, as he was sacked only eight times for the season, earning All-Big Ten Conference honorable mention. He also caught two passes for 22 yards and a touchdown.
The media again awarded Stanton with All-Big Ten honorable mention in 2005. He guided an offense that ranked fifth in the nation with an average of 497.27 yards per game. Stanton ranked 10th nationally with an average of 310.5 yards per game in total offense and tenth with a 153.4 pass efficiency rating. He became only the second player in school history to throw for more than 3,000 yards in a season, gaining 3,077 yards with 22 touchdowns and 12 interceptions on 276 of 354 attempts (66.7 percent). He ranked fourth on the team with 121 runs for 338 yards (2.8 avg) and four scores. He also threw three two-point conversions and ran for a pair of two-point PATs while posting a pair of solo tackles.
The 2006 season started out to be a banner year for Stanton, but a series of injuries, including two concussions, poor protection by the offensive line and dropped passes by a young receiving corps saw Stanton eventually give way to the reserve unit, missing the season finale against Penn State. He connected on 164 of 269 passes (61.0 percent) for 1,807 yards, 12 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He ranked second on the team with 445 yards and five scores on 110 carries (4.0 avg.), finishing with 2,252 yards in total offense.
In 45 games at Michigan State, Stanton appeared in 36 contests as a quarterback, starting 29 times. He ranks second in school history with 543 of 846 passes for 6,524 yards, fifth with 42 touchdowns and ninth with 28 interceptions. His pass completion percentage of 64.18 set a school career record. He carried 332 times for 1,512 yards (4.6 avg) and 15 scores. His 1,512 yards are the second-most ever by a Spartans quarterback. He saw action in 1,178 plays, ranking second in MSU annals with 8,036 yards in total offense.
Positives: Has a well-built, natural frame with good arm length, broad shoulders, developed chest, good bubble, thick thighs and room to add more bulk Has room on his frame to add at least another 15 pounds of bulk without it affecting his quickness Has thick chest muscles, more in the line of a linebacker, with defined calves Shows good athleticism, with nimble feet that defenses must always account for Demonstrates a very lively arm with a quick throwing motion and good speed to gain valid yardage into the second level Mentally tough player who knows he has to play mistake-free football to compensate for a poor receiving corps and marginal pass protection Takes the plays from the chalkboard to the field with no problems and has great mental alertness and solid field vision Excels in the classroom, earning academic honors five times Demonstrates a very lively arm with a quick throwing motion and good speed to gain valid yardage into the second level Has a fluid throwing motion with good arm strength and above average pocket mobility Quick to drop back from center to his throwing point when playing in a traditional offense (but the team used the shot gun more often) Has a quick delivery and a high release, demonstrating the mechanics and arm strength to fire tight ropes down field Shows balance and body control on the move and consistently sprints back to his pass set point When under center, he moves quickly and is ready to throw at the end of his drop Throws with a tight circle and flicks the pass out quickly Throws with a tight circle and flicks the pass out quickly Carries the ball chest high and does a nice job of stepping into his throws Take-charge type in the huddle Shows good accuracy and touch and is very effective at hitting his receivers in stride on short and intermediate routes, even when he falls away from some of his tosses Puts good zip on the ball over the middle, showing the overall arm strength to have good success at the next level Best when taking a three-step drop and flicking the ball out quickly than when using a five-step approach (line deficiencies result in costly sacks) Throws a catchable ball underneath and does not make the receivers adjust in the routes Even when rolling out, he shows good touch on his short and intermediate throws When he sets his feet, Stanton is very capable of getting good placement on the deep ball, especially when he puts it on the outside shoulder of his targets Will generally hit his targets coming out of their breaks, as his passes come out with good touch and velocity Knows when to take something off his dump-off passes and is very effective at feathering the ball over the top of the defenders His quick feet allow him to escape the pass rush and buy time Can scramble and throw on the move, but needs to be more patient, as he tends to force some throws Adept at stepping up to find the throwing lanes Has good straight-line speed and the loose hips and wiggle to elude the defender in the open Won't win many foot races down field, but has the leg drive to break tackles and the lower body power to drag defenders for extra yardage His mobility allows him to escape pressure and he rolls out by design, showing the athletic agility and skills to be an effective runner Shows good accuracy and zip on his roll-outs to his left and his feet allow him time to find his secondary targets Puts good zip behind his out passes and knows how to vary the speed on his throws to loft it over the defender Conscious of sticks and chains when forced to run with the ball, but needs to learn how to slide and avoid, as several of his injuries in 2006 were the result of taking the defender head on.
Negatives: Good competitor, but sometimes tries to carry the weight of the world too much Generally consistent on all throws, but will force the ball under a fierce pass rush Makes good decisions on his short and intermediate throws, but most of his interceptions come when he tries to throw the ball up down field Intelligent athlete, but some of those long throws make some scouts question his judgment at times (it is not like he throws into coverage often, but when he does, his errors come in bunches) Sometimes rotate his hips too much on his long tosses, resulting in a long throwing arc (also doesn't always follow through) While he can make all the throws, the spread offense limits his opportunities to go long more often More effective on intermediate throws and needs some foot technique refinement to generate better power behind the long tosses Throws perfect fades, but must improve the trajectory on his wide-open streaks (earlier in his career, he did not step into his long tosses well, but showed very good improvement from the midway point of the 2004 season to present) Will sometimes fall away from some throws, but he is not distracted by defenders zeroing in on him and maintains his focus to complete the play When he tries too hard to make things happen, it will result in costly interceptions or fumbles, but it is not something he does on a regular basis Smart player, but most of his mistakes come from impatience waiting for his secondary targets to get open and he needs to know when to throw the ball away rather than risk the sack Has not been tested much in the vertical passing attack since the team began utilizing the spread Must do a better job of making progression reads.
Compares To: PHIL SIMMS-ex-New York Giants Some scouts will tell you he's another Tony Banks (great athlete, bad judgment), but he has never had the tools to work with like other quarterbacks. Look around the league and count the heads of MSU offensive linemen or receivers that are playing in the league (enough said). Stanton needs to sit on the bench under the guidance of an aging veteran, but like Simms, you can see this kid has that swagger and moxie that the former Giant displayed. The spread system did not let him highlight his arm strength, but with his mobility and linebacker-size frame, he will do well once he gets under a pro center.
Stanton's pass completion percentage of 64.18 is a school career record, topping the old mark of 62.9 percent by Jim Miller (1990-93) Only Chuck Long of Iowa (65.0 percent -- 782 of 1,203 passes, 1981-85) has a better pass completion percentage in Big Ten Conference annals Completed 64.1 percent of his passes in 2004 and 66.7 percent in 2005, ranking behind Dave Yarema (67.3 percent in 1986) on MSU's single-season record list His 6,524 yards passing rank second on the school's all-time record chart behind Jeff Smoker (8,932; 2000-03) Stanton's 3,077 yards passing in 2005 rank second on the Spartans' single-season record list, surpassed only by Smoker (3,395 in 2003) Completed 543 passes during his career, the second-highest total in school annals behind Smoker (685) His 846 pass attempts rank second in school history, topped only by Smoker's 1,150 Joined Bill Burke (358 in 1998) and Smoker (488 in 2003) as the only passers in school history to attempt more than 350 passes in a season (354 in 2005) Only Smoker (302 in 2003) completed more passes in a season for the Spartans than Stanton's 236 in 2005 His 42 career touchdown passes rank behind Smoker (61), Burke (46), Yarema (43) and Ed Smith (43) in school history His 22 touchdown tosses in 2005 broke the old school single-season record of 21 that Smoker set in 2001 and matched again in 2003 Gained 8,036 yards in total offense, ranking behind Smoker (8,714) on MSU's all-time record list His 3,415 yards in total offense in 2005 broke Smoker's previous school single-season record of 3,279 in 2003 Averaged 7.16 yards per carry in 2004, the third-best season total in Spartans history behind DeAndra Cobb (7.58 avg in 2004) and Lynn Chandnois (7.48 avg in 1948) Threw for at least 200 yards in fourteen consecutive games (beginning with the 2004 season finale vs. Hawaii until the Eastern Michigan clash in 2006), setting a school record His 1,512 yards rushing are the second-most ever by a Michigan State quarterback, topped only by Charlie Baggett's 1,706 yards (1973-75).
An All-American and All-Big Ten Conference preseason selection, Stanton started the first 11 games for the Spartans, completing 164 of 269 passes for 1,807 yards, 12 touchdowns and 10 interceptions He finished second on the team with 445 yards and five scores on 110 carries He also had one solo tackle and gained 2,252 yards in total offense on 799 plays The MSU quarterback suffered through an injury-plagued senior season that saw him sit out the season finale vs. Penn State He still managed to become the first player in school history to complete more than 60 percent of his passes in three consecutive seasons Turned the ball over twice on four fumbles and was sacked 20 times for losses totaling 138 yards.
|2006 Game Analysis|
Idaho Stanton guided the Spartans to a 27-17 victory, as he hit on 16 of 25 passes for 225 yards, adding 55 yards on eight carries, but he also fumbled once His lone touchdown came in the first quarter while starting the drive on the MSU 3-yard line, driving the team in a 10-play, 97-yard drive to the Idaho 27, where he completed a pass to Kerry Read for a 27- yard touchdown with 3:55 left in the quarter Stanton completed passes to six different receivers during the course of the game It wasn't the overwhelming performance most everyone expected, but Michigan State did escape with a win. "The important thing is we won," Stanton said. "That's the ultimate goal every week. Offensively, we did some good things, but we need to be able to sustain drives more. We have to do a better job of trying to help our defense and keep them off the field."
Eastern Michigan Threw for 254 yards and three touchdowns with one interception on 24 of 32 chances and rushed nine times for 33 yards, including a pair of scores in a 52-20 triumph In the first quarter the MSU drive started on their own 31 and went down to the Eastern Michigan 6-yard line, where on third-&-4, Stanton ran in for a touchdown On Michigan State's first drive of the second quarter from the 17-yard line, Stanton connected with Matt Trannon for a touchdown with 9:33 left to play in the quarter .On the first drive of the third quarter, Stanton led his team on a 12-play, 78-yard drive, where on second-&-Goal, the Spartans QB ran one in for a touchdown On the very next drive on third-&-goal at the Eastern Michigan 8, Stanton completed a pass to TJ Williams for an 8-yard score Continuing a drive from the third quarter, on the first play of the fourth quarter, Stanton hit Matt Trannon with a 7-yard touchdown Record Watch-Stanton became the sixth quarter-back in school history to reach 5000 career passing yards.
Pittsburgh Stanton followed with 198 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 16 of 25 passes and gained 105 yards with another score on thirteen rushing attempts to rally the Spartans to a 38-23 win Leading his team for their own 17-yard line, Stanton picked up 15 yards on the ground and on second-&-goal, he fired a 2-yard touchdown pass to Kellen Davis to end an 11-play 83-yard drive In the third quarter on third-&-goal, Stanton ran in for a 3-yard score Early in the fourth quarter, the MSU passer tossed a third-&-6 12-yard touchdown pass to Todd Boleski Stanton finished the day with 301 total yards Stanton's 105 yards on the ground was the third 100-yard performance of his career and the first since he ran for 102 yards vs. Minnesota on October 16th, 2004.
Notre Dame Stanton was impressive in the first 30 minutes, clearly outplaying Irish QB Brady Quinn in the early stages of the game, but in the second half, the MSU passer was intercepted twice and turned the ball over on a fumble once, as Notre Dame used each of those turnovers to score en route to handing the Spartans a touch 40-37 loss Overall, Stanton completed 10 of 22 passes for 114 yards and two touchdowns. He rushed for 53 yards on 19 carries, including a 36-yard run in the first quarter .On MSU's opening drive, Stanton hit Kerry Reed with a 34-yard scoring strike Late in the second quarter, that duo would again hook up on a 15-yard touchdown pass that ended an 8-play, 60-yard drive "We let ourselves down and the program down,'' Stanton said. "It's bad that we let them get back into and that we couldn't do anything offensively (late in the game). We just had too many mistakes.'' On the Spartans' possession before his last interception, Stanton tried to run for a first down on a third-&-9 from the MSU 21, but the ball was knocked loose before his knee hit the turn and the Irish recovered. Five plays later, Quinn connected on his fifth touchdown pass of the night, hitting Rhema McNight from 14 yards out to cut MSU's lead to 37-33 On the interception, Stanton said, "They were blitzing everyone and their D-lineman dropped back at the last second and I tried to get it around him. I guess Javon (Ringer) was open in the flat. . .That would have been a huge play.''..The MSU quarterback would miss the waning moments of the game when he left the field with bruised ribs after fumbling the ball.
Illinois In what would become a three-game drought, Stanton did not have any touch-down passes, as he completed 15 of 24 attempts for 144 yards. He also rushed thirteen times for 32 yards in a 23-20 loss Stanton fumbled twice during the game, including one near the goal line He left the contest in the fourth quarter after he suffered bruised ribs when he was slammed to the ground by defensive end Doug Pilcher.
Michigan Stanton was intercepted twice and did not throw any touchdowns, but did hit on 20 of 35 tosses for 252 yards He was sacked once for minus 6 yards, but totaled 24 yards on seven runs, including a 2-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter The MSU quarterback played the entire game with bruised ribs and during the contest, he bruised his throwing hand when it hit a player's helmet.
Ohio State The Buckeyes applied pressure on the MSU backfield all day, sacking Stanton three times while adding eight QB hurries. The Spartans passer completed only 8 of 16 passes for 54 yards and an interception and was held to minus 6 yards on seven rushing attempts, marking the first time in his Michigan State career that the quarterback was held to lost yardage on the ground in a game Stanton was forced to leave the game in the third quarter when he suffered a concussion and neck and back sprains when his head slammed into a water cooler while sliding out of bounds.
Northwestern Stanton got back on the scoring track with two touchdown passes among his 37 tosses, completing 27 throws (73.0%) for a season-high 294 yards, adding 37 yards and a score on nine carries He was sacked twice for losses of 9 yards and intercepted once, but still managed to lead the team to a 41-38 victory Michigan State's first touch-down came in the third quarter, as Stanton led his team from their own 35-yard line and drove to the Northwestern 18. On third-&-five he fired an 18-yard scoring strike to Jehuu Caulcrick In the fourth quarter, Stanton ran for a 12-yard touchdown, as he continued to rally the team from a 38-3 third quarter deficit With 2:59 left in the game, he found T.J. Williams with a 9-yard touchdown pass to give the Spartans a much-needed win.
Indiana Stanton connected on just 10 of 22 throws, picking up 100 yards with a 37-yard touchdown pass to Devin Thomas that capped a 9-play, 80-yard fourth quarter drive, but the quarterback was intercepted once and sacked for an 11-yard loss in a 46-21 loss.
Purdue Completed 16 of 29 passes for 161 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Stanton's only score came early in the fourth quarter on third-&-7, finding T.J. Williams on a 21-yard touchdown toss.
Minnesota Left the game after only ten snaps after suffering his second concussion for the season Completed both pass attempts for 7 yards, but was hurt on a 13-yard sack.
Penn State Missed the season finale due to his concussion.
Earned All-Big Ten Conference honorable mention from the league's media Started every game, ranking eighth in the nation in total offense (310.5 ypg), tenth in passing efficiency (153.4), 11th in points responsible for (15.64 ppg) and thirteenth in passing yardage per game (279.73) Led a unit that ranked fifth nationally in total offense (497.27 ypg), tenth in third-down conversion percentage (69-of-146, 47 percent) and 11th in passing yardage (295.5 ypg) His 236 pass completions rank second on the school's single-season record list while his 354 pass attempts rank third His pass completion percentage of 66.7 is surpassed only by Dave Yarema (67.3 percent in 1986) on MSU's single-season record list and his 3,077 yards passing rank second in school annals behind Jeff Smoker's 3,395 in 2003 Threw 22 touchdown passes, setting a school single-season record Also had twelve interceptions Ranked fourth on the squad with 338 yards and four touchdowns on 121 carries (2.8 avg) Caught one pass for a 6-yard loss and was responsible for five two-point conversions (three passing, two rushing) His 475 total plays rank second on the school's single-season record list behind Smoker's 551 in 2003 His 3,415 yards in total offense broke Smoker's old MSU record of 3,279 yards in 2003 Also recorded a pair of solo tackles A key to Stanton's throwing success in 2005 was his ability to utilize all of the weapons at his disposal in Michigan State's spread offense. Five Spartans have at least 27 receptions, including Jerramy Scott (44 for 635), Kyle Brown (35 for 521 yards), Matt Trannon (33 for 480), Terry Love (28 for 430) and Kerry Reed (27 for 406). All five of those receivers had at least two touchdown grabs Stanton fumbled the ball four times, with the opposition recovering two of those miscues 131 of Stanton's 236 pass completions resulted in first downs, with 55 of those successful passes gaining 20 yards or more Added 27 first downs rushing Was sacked 23 times for losses totaling 159 yards Had 29 of his 354 pass attempts deflected by the opposition.
|2005 Game Analysis|
Kent State Michigan State's offense was so dominant that Stanton sat out the fourth quarter. He had already put in a full day's work during the Spartans' 49-14 victory, as the offense gained 685 yards, the second most in school history. Stanton completed 22 of 29 passes for 297 yards and two touchdowns with one interception. He also rushed for 60 yards on 10 carries. "Today you saw what our offense is capable of," Stanton said. "There were some throws that I wish I could have back, but for the most part we have to be happy with the way this went. When our running game gets going that opens things up for our passes." Michigan State led 35-14 at halftime and had 438 yards of total offense -- a school record for a half. The Spartans took control early, scoring on their first two drives of the game to go up 14-0. Stanton was 4-for-4 for 42 yards on the 68-yard opening drive, capped by a 6-yard scoring strike to Kyle Brown. He also connected with Jerramy Scott on a 21-yard scoring strike in the third quarter Six of Stanton's 13 pass completions that resulted in first downs were for 20 yards or longer Also ran for three first downs Record Watch-The 685 yards gained by the offense rank second on the school's game-record list, topped only by the 698-yard effort vs. Purdue in 1971.
Hawaii Stanton threw for 301 yards (21-of-26) and three touchdowns to lead Michigan State past Hawaii, 42-14, at Spartan Stadium. The Spartans scored on its first four possessions to jump out to a 28-0 lead and didn't bother looking back. Michigan State did more of the same in the second half, adding a 20-yard touchdown pass from Stanton to Jerramy Scott to take 35-7 lead. Drew Stanton is often more dangerous with his feet than his right arm, but in this game, he only had five carries for 3 yards. That's uncharacteristic for a scrambler who rushed for more than 100 yards in a game twice last season. It was the second straight dominant offensive performance for Michigan State, which rolled up 499 yards of offense vs. the Warriors. Drew had touchdown passes of 20 yards to Terry Love in the first quarter, 54 yards to Matt Trannon in the second quarter and 20 yards to Jerramy Scott that capped an 8-play, 80-yard drive in the third quarter. "We came out with the same attitude that we came out with last week," Stanton said. "We wanted to score points, and we were successful again. There were only a couple of times we stopped ourselves." Michigan State was angry about the officiating in that game. The Spartans were flagged 16 times for 119 yards, including a penalty that wiped out a late score. More spark was added to the long-distance rivalry this week when Jones and Smith got into a verbal feud after declining to swap videotaped footage of previous games. Jones said he called Michigan State several times to request film but never heard back. Hawaii was penalized 10 times for 103 yards and MSU was called for five penalties for 49 yards. With about nine minutes remaining in the game, Hawaii's Reagan Mauia was flagged for a late hit on Stanton, which briefly sent the Spartan QB to the sidelines. Mauia was hit with another personal foul on the next play for pulling off offensive lineman Kyle Cook's helmet. Stanton also was penalized for running back onto the field from the sidelines after the whistle blew. "I think we came out today with the same attitude we came out with last week," Drew said. We wanted to score some points and for the most part we did that. Again, there were a few times when we stopped ourselves. They kind of confused us a little bit and showed us some things we were not ready for." Had 12 of his 21 pass completions result in first downs, with six of those tosses gaining 20 yards or more.
Notre Dame Stanton completed 16 of 27 passes for 327 yards, three touchdowns and an interception, adding 48 yards and a score on 14 carries to guide the Spartans to a 44-41 win, but also fumbled once. The 327 yards are the most for a Spartan quarterback against Notre Dame and it was Stanton's fourth 300-yard passing effort of his career and second this season. He ran for a 3-yard touchdown with 0:24 remaining in the first half to put MSU up 24-17, marking his seventh career rushing touchdown. Michigan State racked up 292 yards of total offense in the first half (91 rushing, 201 passing). He connected with Matt Trannon on a 20-yard scoring pass in the first quarter to finish a 4-play, 70-yard drive. He added an 11-yard touchdown toss to Kellen Davis with 2:01 left in the first quarter and came back to Trannon with a 65-yard scoring strike in the third quarter. Discussing the option play and the winning touchdown, Drew said, "That play we only used at the goal earlier in the game and the play to end the game. I don't think I had a choice but to pitch the ball. (Irish linebacker) Brandon Hoyte came at me hard and it was just a matter of me getting rid of the ball. This victory over Notre Dame is a testament to the coaching staff and to what the players are doing around here. Now we start the Big Ten schedule and we are 0-0 so we just have to believe in the coaches and each other. This certainly gives us a great deal of momentum. "This is my biggest win at Michigan State with the magnitude of the rivalry and beating a Top 10 team on the road. This is a great momentum builder." Eight of his ten passes that resulted in first downs went for 20 yards or longer.
Illinois Michigan State's record book needed an updating after Stanton threw five touch-down passes and the 17th-ranked Spartans set marks with 705 yards of offense and seven touchdowns in a 61-14 romp in the Big Ten opener for both schools Saturday. The MSU QB gained 259 yards on 20 of 26 attempts (76.9 percent), but also fumbled once. Stanton tied the record by halftime, doing whatever he pleased during a 28-point second quarter that turned a 10-7 game into a rout. Illinois gave up 318 yards in the first half. "It was a pretty good outing. He had a good day," Michigan State coach John L. Smith said with a grin. Stanton's second pass of the day was a 75-yard touchdown strike to Kyle Brown and he hit Dwayne Holmes (1-yard), Jerramy Scott (10 yards), and Matt Trannon 29 yards) with scoring tosses in the second quarter. Stanton broke the school game-record with a 2-yard scoring pass to Kellen Davis on the Spartans' first possession of the second half. "It's (the record) a nice thing to have," he said, "but it's a tribute to our wide receivers getting open. It kind of looked easy out there at times. Those guys worked getting open." Stanton left the game early in the third quarter, finishing 20-of-26 for 259 yards. He was 11-of-14 for 107 yards in the deciding second quarter Record Watch-The Spartans racked up 705 yards of total offense (376 rushing, 329 passing), establishing a school record. The previous best was 698 vs. Purdue in 1971. The 705 yards is the third-highest mark for total offense in Big Ten Conference history for a conference game (Purdue gained 763 yards vs. Indiana in 2004 and Iowa totaled 713 yards vs. Northwestern in 1983) Stanton's 75-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Brown in the first quarter was the longest touchdown pass of Stanton's career Stanton's five touchdowns broke the old school game-record of four set by several players (most recently by Jeff Smoker vs. Penn State in 2003).
Michigan In a touch 34-31 loss, Stanton totaled 282 yards on 20 of 30 tries with a touch-down and an interception, but he was also sacked twice, turning the ball over once on a costly fumble. He also added 20 yards on eight carries, scoring the Spartans' first touch-down on a second-and-goal play from the 4-yard line on a keeper over the left tackle. The 10-play scoring drive covered 80 yards in 4:19, with Stanton completing a pair of key third-down passes that kept the drive alive. He tossed a 13-yard pass to wide receiver Kyle Brown on third-and-three from the MSU 27-yard line and completed a 31-yard pass into Michigan territory on a third-and-12 play from the Spartans' 38-yard line. Drew also had a 61-yard scoring toss that was caught by Kerry Reed with 3:30 left in the first half Five of Stanton's pass attempts were knocked down at the line of scrimmage.
Ohio State Ohio State's defense set a school record by sacking Stanton twelve times for 58 yards in losses in a 35-24 victory over Michigan State. OSU linebacker Bobby Carpenter led the way with four sacks and 27 yards in losses, with David Patterson adding three sacks. All-American linebacker A.J. Hawk finished with 19 tackles. Stanton finished with 26 of 36 throws (72.2 percent) for 340 yards, including a 36-yard touchdown to Jerramy Scott in the second quarter that capped a 12-play, 84-yard drive. Michigan State had controlled the ball throughout and led 17-7 with 24 seconds remaining in the half. Faced with a second-and-12 at Ohio State's 17 with no timeouts, Stanton was tackled for no gain by lineman Quinn Pitcock. Rather than having Stanton spike the ball to stop the clock on third down, Michigan State's coaches hustled the field-goal unit onto the field. In the chaos, offensive players were scrambling to the sideline while the kick unit was trying to beat the clock for a 35-yard attempt. The Spartans snapped the ball with only 10 players on the field. Ohio State's Nate Salley broke through to block the kick, which was picked up by cornerback Youboty and returned as time expired to cut the lead to 17-14 Record Watch-Stanton's 340 yards was his career-best game effort to date and the third-best effort for a Spartan quarterback vs. Ohio State It marked Stanton's fifth career 300-yard passing game, and third this season It was also his seventh-straight game passing for at least 200 yards n Stanton threw for 19 first downs and ran for two others Seven of his pass completions were good for 20 yards or longer.
Northwestern Michigan State entered the game third in the nation and first in the Big Ten in total offense, while Northwestern ranked fourth in the nation and second in the conference. The two teams combined for 1,013 yards (480 by MSU, 533 by NU) as Stanton threw for 234 yards and a touchdown on 20 of 38 attempts, but was also intercepted three times and turned the ball over once on a fumble in a 49-14 loss. Michigan State scored on the game's first possession, going 75 yards in just three plays, the last an 18-yard touch-down pass from Drew Stanton to Kerry Reed, but the Spartans' own mistakes -- two interceptions in the end zone, two missed field goals and a fumble that was returned for a score -- allowed Northwestern to take a 21-7 halftime lead. Stanton entered the game as the nation's leader in passing efficiency, but he struggled throughout the contest. "We didn't execute on offense and it falls on my shoulders," Stanton said. "I made too many mistakes." Stanton was intercepted in the end zone by the Wildcats' safety Brendan Smith, who returned it 37 yards to set up Northwestern's second touchdown drive. On Michigan State's next possession, a fumble by Stanton was returned 86 yards for a touchdown by Northwestern linebacker Demetrius Eaton. Coach John L. Smith said, "It wasn't Drew's best day, but he'll bounce back and learn from today's effort and he'll get better. He's had a lot of good days, but everybody has a bad day every once in a while. He tried to do too much, with too little, but that's his competitive nature and I respect that and try to nurture it. He's going to have to have some days like this to learn how to deal with these things, but you don't want to take his competitive attitude away from him." Record Watch-Drew's 234 yards marked his eighth-straight 200-yard passing game, which tied a school record first set by Jeff Smoker (2000-03).
Indiana The Spartans gained 493 yards of total offense vs. the Hoosiers, as Stanton hit on 17 of 31 passes for 244 yards and two touchdowns with one interception. He also rushed for 27 yards and a score on 10 carries before sitting out most of the fourth quarter. Drew connected with Kerry Reed on a 3-yard scoring strike in the first quarter and then ran for a 1-yard touchdown to cap a 12-play, 77-yard drive in the second quarter. Stanton then left the game after finding Terry Love with a 39-yard touchdown pass with 14:53 left to play Record Watch-Set a school record with his ninth-straight game passing for at least 200 yards Jeff Smoker held the previous record of eight games in 2003 It marked the eleventh time in Stanton's career he has thrown for over 200 yards Stanton also set a school record for throwing a touchdown pass in his ninth consecutive game, equaling the mark set by Smoker in 2001.
Purdue Stanton threw for 248 yards on 22 of 30 attempts (73.3 percent) with a 16-yard touch-down to tailback Jason Teague, but was also intercepted once and sacked three times for losses of 25 yards in a tough 28-21 loss. He also rushed 14 times for 28 yards and a 1-yardfirst quarter score. Michigan State reached the Purdue 25 late in the fourth quarter, but a fourth-down pass from Stanton to Jerramy Scott was broken up in the end zone by Brian Hickman, giving the ball back to the Boilermakers on downs Five of Stanton's ten first-down pass completions were for 20 yards or longer He ran for four first downs and had a single-season high six pass attempts knocked down at the line of scrimmage Record Watch-Stanton established a school record by throwing a touchdown pass in his tenth consecutive game.
Minnesota Stanton went 29-for-46 for 312 yards and fourth-quarter touchdown passes of 20 yards to Dwayne Holmes and 4 yards to Terry Love, adding 55 yards on six carries Record Watch-Stanton threw a touchdown pass in his eleventh consecutive game, extending his school record Also extended his school record by throwing for over 200 yards in his eleventh straight game This contest marked his sixth-career 300-yard passing game and fourth of the season His 29 completions matches a career best (2004, at Iowa) Stanton tossed two touchdown passes, giving him 21 for the season, which ties him with Jeff Smoker (2001, 2003) for the most in a Spartan season Stanton totaled fourteen first downs passing and three more rushing Six of his pass completions were good for 20 yards or longer Drew also had five of his pass attempts deflected.
Penn State It's been said that to be the best, you have to beat the best. Standing in the way of Penn State's conference title was quarterback Drew Stanton, a semifinalist for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award and leader of the powerful Michigan State offensive attack. Coming into the game, the Spartans led the Big Ten in total offense, ranked second in passing offense and third in rushing offense and scoring offense. Enter the Penn State defense, which was led by cornerback Alan Zemaitis and his three interceptions and linebacker Dan Connor who made 14 tackles. The Nittany Lions solved the Stanton riddle with a single-season high four interceptions and stopped the Spartans three times in the red zone, another single-season best. The Lions held Michigan State to 401 yards, well below its season average of 507 yards per game, as Stanton gained 314 total yards on 19 carries for 81 yards and 23 of 36 passes (63.9 percent) for 233 yards and a 15-yard fourth quarter touchdown to Kerry Reed, but his four interceptions were too much to overcome in a 31-22 loss. MSU seemed poised to answer Penn State's first score on its first possession, but Alan Zemaitis intercepted Drew Stanton on the goal line and ended the Spartan threat. Michigan State had a chance to tie the game at the end of the first period but Matt Haughey's field goal attempt sailed wide left. An interception by Zemaitis and his subsequent 17-yard return late in the third quarter set up Penn State's third touchdown, a 3-yard strike from Michael Robinson to Deon Butler that made the score 24-7 in favor of the Lions. Zemaitis made his third interception of the game on the ensuing Spartan drive to seal the game well before Michigan State scored a touchdown on a 15-yard pass from Stanton to Kerry Reed with :53 remaining. Stanton's two-point conversion made the final tally 31-22. Michigan State was on the verge of making it even tighter, driving to the Penn State 11 at the start of the fourth quarter. But Stanton was sacked by Jay Alford for a 13-yard loss and Michigan State botched the snap and hold on a 43-yard field goal attempt, never even getting a kick off Record Watch-Stanton threw a touchdown pass in his 12th consecutive game, extending his school record Also extended his school record by throwing for over 200 yards in his 12th straight game With his 233 passing yards, Stanton become only the second quarterback in MSU history to eclipse the 3,000-yard mark Stanton finished the season second in MSU history with 3,077 passing yards, ranking behind Jeff Smoker's record 3,395 yards in 2003 Stanton tossed one touchdown pass, giving him 22 for the season, which establishes a new single-season record at Michigan State Stanton also collected 314 yards of total offense His 3415 yards of total offense this season is another school record, topping the old mark of 3,279 yards by Smoker in 2003.
Named Academic All-Big Ten Conference for the second year in a row Honorable mention All-Big Ten selection by the coaches and media Presented the Governor's Award as the team's Most Valuable Player Played in ten games, including seven starts at quarterback (vs. Indiana, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Penn State and Hawaii) Did not play in the season opener at Rutgers, plus sat out the second half of the Michigan game and the entire Ohio State game with a separated shoulder Ranked among the Big Ten leaders in total offense (third at 228.8 yards per game), passing efficiency (third with 131.8 rating), rushing (eighth at 68.7 ypg.) and passing (10th at 160.1 ypg.) Completed 141 of 220 passes (64.1 percent) for 1,601 yards, eight touchdowns and six interceptions Only Dave Yarema (67.3 percent in 1986) had a better pass completion percentage in a season that Drew's 64.1 percent Ranked third on the team in rushing with 687 yards on 96 carries (7.2 avg) and five scores His 687 yards represent the second-best season rushing total by a quarterback in Spartan history and he posted the third-highest rushing average in school history, topped only by DeAndra Cobb (7.58 avg in 2004) and Lynn Chandnois (7.48 avg in 1948) averaging 7.2 yards per carry His excellent scrambling ability gave opposing defenses fits, as Stanton was sacked only four times for losses of 15 yards and had three fumbles, with the opposition recovering one of those miscues.
|2004 Game Analysis|
Notre Dame Came off the bench to hit on 8 of 12 throws for 110 yards and rushed eight times for 49 yards, including a 4-yard score with 0:09 left in the game Turned the ball over when he was tackled by safety Tom Zbikowski on a rushing attempt late in the second quarter, setting up a Notre Dame 23-yard field goal 0:57 before halftime.
Indiana Accounted for 306 total yards and two scores in his first collegiate start, while leading Michigan State to a 30-20 victory Completed 15 of 23 attempts for 172 yards, but also had a pair of interceptions Capped a 13-play, 81-yard drive with a 2-yard touchdown run that gave the Spartans a 7-3 lead with 14:17 remaining in the second quarter His 28-yard completion to Agim Shabaj set up Drew's second touchdown run, a 1-yard plunge on fourth-and-goal, as the Spartans pulled to within 20-14 with 6:24 remaining in the third quarter Stanton opened MSU's next possession with a 57-yard bomb to Matt Trannon. The drive stalled at the IU 27, but Dave Rayner came on and converted a 44-yard field goal as the Spartans rallied to within 20-17 with 2:58 to play in the third quarter His 36-yard run set up Rayner's second field goal, a 22-yarder with 5:56 left in the fourth quarter, as the Spartans moved out to a 27-20 lead A 35-yard run by Stanton highlighted MSU's final scoring drive as Rayner tacked on a 39-yard field goal with 2:36 on the clock Record Watch-Stanton rushed for 134 yards on 12 carries to become the first Spartan quarter-back to record a 100-yard rushing game since Charlie Baggett gained 120 yards vs. North-western in 1975.
Iowa Hit on 29 of 54 attempts for 245 yards and rushed 15 times for 89 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown with 4:24 remaining, finishing the day with 334 yards in total offense Stanton's 25-yard completion to Terry Love set up Rayner's 23-yard field goal as MSU cut its deficit to 14-6 with 38 seconds left in the first half Michigan State concluded a 12-play, 92-yard drive and scored its only touchdown on Stanton's 1-yard keeper Record Watch-Stanton set personal bests for pass attempts (54) and completions (29, tied that mark in the 2005 Minnesota game) Only Jeff Smoker (55 vs. Ohio State in 2003) had more pass attempts in a game for the Spartans His 29 completions rank tied for eighth on MSU's game-record list.
Illinois Stanton accounted for 254 combined yards (rushing, passing and receiving) and four touchdowns to lead Michigan State to a 38-25 victory in Spartan Stadium. It marked MSU's eighth-straight win over the Fighting Illini Completed 21 of 28 passes (75.0 percent) for 199 yards and three touchdowns, rushed eleven times for 37 yards and caught an 18-yard touchdown option pass from receiver Jerramy Scott in the first quarter, but also fumbled once Stanton capped a 9-play, 49-yard drive with an 11-yard scoring toss to Scott with 6:19 left in the first quarter Opened the next series with a 29-yard completion down the middle to Kellen Davis to the Illini 42. Three plays later, Stanton caught an 18-yard TD pass from Scott as the Spartans built a 13-0 lead Finished off a seven-play, 80-yard drive with a 6-yard scoring toss to Jason Teague in the second quarter MSU put together a five-play, 80-yard drive midway through the third quarter and extended its lead to 30-16 on Drew's 27-yard touchdown strike to Agim Shabaj in the right corner of the end zone in the third quarter.
Minnesota Stanton accounted for a school-record 410 yards to lead Michigan State to
a 51-17 Homecoming victory over No. 19 Minnesota, earning Big Ten co-Player of the Week honors Gained 308 yards with three touch-downs and two interceptions on 20 of 31 passes and carried 13 times for 102 yards He capped a nine-play, 83-yard drive with a 25-yard touchdown toss to Eric Knott MSU extended its lead to 31-10 on Stanton's 36-yard scoring strike to Knott to conclude an 82-yard, 7-play drive in the second quarter Closed out the game's scoring with a 56-yard touchdown pass to Terry Love with 6:56 left to play Record Watch-MSU produced 636 total yards, including a school-record 407 yards in the first half Became the first quarterback in Spartan history to throw for 300 yards and rush for 100 yards in the same game His 410 yards in total offense topped the old school game-record of 393 yards by Jeff Smoker vs. Fresno State in 2001.
Michigan Missed the second half after suffering a shoulder separation, finishing with 10 of 13 attempts for 95 yards and 80 yards on 12 carries with a 5-yard score that capped an 11-play, 79-yard drive in the first quarter Also fumbled once The Spartans and Wolverines combined to produce 52 first downs, 82 points and 1,031 total yards.
Ohio State Did not play (shoulder).
Wisconsin Still bothered by his shoulder separation, Drew saw reserve duty and managed only 44 yards on 3 of 5 passes, but connected with Matt Trannon on a 31-yard scoring strike in the third quarter.
Penn State Was intercepted twice as he completed 12 of 19 throws for 89 yards and rushed seven times for 56 yards.
Hawaii Earned Big Ten co-Player of the Week honors after throwing for a single-season high 330 yards and a touchdown on 22 of 32 passes and ran for 76 yards on 12 attempts, finishing the day with 406 yards in total offense The Spartans jumped out to a 21-0 lead as Stanton fired a 15-yard touchdown strike to Eric Knott in the first quarter Stanton's 24-yard completion to Jerramy Scott set up Dave Rayner's 49-yard field goal as MSU built a 31-27 lead early in the fourth quarter Record Watch-Stanton's 330 yards was the second-best game performance of his career, topped only by his 340-yard effort vs. Ohio State in 2005 His 406 yards in total offense rank second on the school's game-record list behind Drew's 410 vs. Minnesota earlier in the 2004 campaign.
Academic All-Big Ten Conference choice Appeared in thirteen games on special teams, but only saw limited action at quarterback in the Rutgers, Indiana, Wisconsin and Penn State games Completed 2-of-3 passes for 39 yards and carried five times for 42 yards (8.4 avg), including a 13-yard touchdown that capped a 10-play, 96-yard drive in the Wisconsin clash Also completed 1-of-2 passes for 8 yards vs. Wisconsin and threw a 31-yard screen pass to DeAndra Cobb vs. Indiana Led the punt-coverage team with 13 tackles (9 solos), as he posted two tackles each vs. Penn State (1-1), Iowa (2-0) and Louisiana Tech (1-1) is 29-yard run off a fake punt on fourth-and-4 from the MSU 43 in the third quarter vs. Penn State set up Jeff Smoker's third touchdown pass, a 17-yarder to Jerramy Scott Suffered a knee injury vs. Nebraska in the Alamo Bowl that required reconstructive knee surgery, missing 2004 spring drills to continue his rehabilitation.
Redshirted as a freshman Selected Spartan Scout Team Offensive Player of the Week vs. Northwestern.
2003: Suffered a torn right knee ligament covering a punt vs. Nebraska (12/29) in the Alamo Bowl. Underwent reconstructive surgery and participated in only non-contact drills during 2004 spring practice while continuing to rehabilitate.
2004: Did not play in the season opener vs. Rutgers while continuing to recover from 2003 knee surgery Sat out the second half of the Michigan game (10/30) and missed the entire Ohio State contest (11/06) with a separated right shoulder (AC joint).
2005: Missed several practices leading up to the Penn State game (11/19) with a right thumb bruise that he suffered the previous week vs. Minnesota (11/12).
2006: Left the Notre Dame game in the waning moments (9/23) when he bruised his ribs Suffered bruised ribs when he was slammed to the ground by defensive end Doug Pilcher, leaving the Illinois game (9/30) in the fourth quarter Suffered a right hand bruise vs. Michigan (10/07) Left the Ohio State game (10/14) with back and head injuries after he slammed into a water cooler on the sidelines when forced out of bounds in the third quarter Left the following game vs. Northwestern (10/21) when he again experienced neck and back pain, but returned later Suffered a concussion early in the fourth quarter vs. Minnesota (11/11), but played several more snaps before going to the sidelines due to dizziness and did not return to the field. That injury would force him to sit out the season finale vs. Penn State (11/18).
Campus 4.79 in the 40-yard dash 350-pound bench press 470-pound squat 315-pound hang clean 29.5-inch vertical jump 30 7/8-inch arm length 9 5/8-inch hands Right-handed 35/46 Wonderlic score.
Combine: 4.79 in the 40-yard dash 1.67 10-yard dash 2.75 20-yard dash 4.41 20-yard shuttle 6.77 three-cone drill 30.5-inch vertical jump 9'0" broad jump.
Attended Harrison (Farmington Hills, Mich.) High School, playing football for head coach John Herrington Earned Super Prep, Prep Star and Max Emfinger All-American honors as a senior Rated among the nation's top 20 quarterbacks by Super Prep, Student Sports Magazine, TheInsiders.com and ESPN.com's Tom Lemming and also ranked seventh among the country's top passing quarterbacks by USA Today's Max Emfinger Listed among the Midwest's top prospects by the Detroit Free Press (No. 15) and Super Prep (No. 17) and ranked among the state's top seniors by The Detroit News (third), Lansing State Journal (third) and Detroit Free Press (sixth) Named to The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press Dream teams The two-year starter completed 234 of 357 career passes (65.5 percent) for 5,293 yards and 58 touchdowns and only nine interceptions while leading Harrison High to back-to-back state titles in 2000-01 Connected on 132 of 196 passes (67.3 percent) for 2,822 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior, with his passing yards and scoring tosses marking the fifth-best single-season totals in state history Also rushed for 350 yards (47 carries) and nine scores in 2001 Accounted for 259 total yards and three touchdowns in the 2001 state Division 3 championship game vs. Fruitport as Harrison capped off its perfect season (14-0) with a 28-6 victory, as he hit 14-of-18 passes for 210 yards and two touchdowns and scored on a 24-yard run in the second quarter Completed 102 of 161 passes (63.4 percent) for 2,471 yards and 27 touchdowns as a junior During that season, he threw for 163 yards and two scores plus ran for another touchdown in a 42-0 win over East Lansing in the 2000 state championship game Also lettered in baseball as a shortstop/pitcher, batting .561 as a junior, including three homers and four triples.
Kinesiology major, earning Academic All-American honors as a junior in 2005 and was named to the Academic All-Big Ten Conference squad three times Son of Christine and Gaylord Stanton Born 5/07/84 Resides in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
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