December 30, 2013

Rose Bowl Feed: Dantonio welcomes pressure

LOS ANGELES - When John L. Smith took over as head coach at Michigan State in December of 2002, he announced that the "day of the dinosaur is over," and that the Spartans would no longer have any use for a fullback.

Now, 11 years later, seven years after the end of Smith's failed regime at MSU and seven bowl trips into the Mark Dantonio era at Michigan State, the 100th Rose Bowl will match two teams that make good, physical, pounding use of fullbacks within a two-back system, with behemoth offensive linemen battling for gap control between the tackles.

When people watch Stanford's offense operate, some may view it as an antique. But for an expert like Dantonio, he sees it as avant grade.

"They (Stanford) build it on what's perceived maybe as old-school, two-back offenses old school, much like what we try to do," Dantonio said. "But at the same time there's a cutting edge to what they do,

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