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PRACTICE NOTES

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December 2015

Mentally, So Far So Good

Monday, December 28th, 2015

Michigan State's focus has sharpened each day since beginning on-site practices for the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

How that will carry over to game day is hard to know, Head Coach Mark Dantonio said Monday."My wife asks me that all time, how it's going to be," Dantonio said. "I just say, 'Hey, we'll see when the game gets here.'"

"I think our attention to detail is very good. I think the focus is good.

Crimson Tide Continues Prep Work

Monday, December 28th, 2015

The No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide put in another elongated practice session with more than two hours in full pads at AT&T Stadium.

Intensity continued to build and focus continued to sharpen as the Crimson Tide ready for its College Football Playoff Semifinal clash at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic against the No. 3 Michigan State Spartans (12-1, 7-1 Big Ten) three days away.

“I feel pretty good (about today’s practice), said LB Reggie Ragland. “Guys were flying around, being in the right position to get better today, so overall it was good.

MSU Has Eye on Tide

Sunday, December 27th, 2015

Even as he prepares for the biggest game of his career, Michigan State Head Coach Mark Dantonio had the Dallas-area storm victims on his mind Sunday.

At least 11 people died, many others were injured and hundreds of homes were damaged when tornadoes tore through nearby cities Saturday evening. It was the first thought Dantonio shared Sunday after completing the team’s second practice for the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

“Our thoughts and our prayers go out to the people that are affected by the tornadoes,” Dantonio said.

Alabama Dons Full Pads

Sunday, December 27th, 2015

The No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide got down to business for its College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic with a two-hour practice in full pads on the AT&T Stadium turf in Arlington.

The Crimson Tide (12-1, 8-1 SEC) held a spirited workout in preparation for its New Year’s Eve matchup with the No. 3 Michigan State Spartans (12-1, 7-1 Big Ten).

“Practice has been going well,” said C Ryan Kelly. “This is a team with a honed vision of what we want when we started this a long time ago when we dreamed of getting here.

MSU Puts in Solid Start

Saturday, December 26th, 2015

Michigan State began its on-site preparation Saturday for the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

The Spartans practiced for the first time in seven days, working 2½ hours in full pads at AT&T Stadium.

“Good practice today,” Head Coach Mark Dantonio said. “We got a lot of things done and got reconnected with the environment here, you could say, and had good work.”

The Spartans (12-1, 7-1 Big Ten) started the year at AT&T Stadium when they rallied from 20 points down to beat Baylor 42-41 in the 2015 Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

Alabama Conducts First Workout

Saturday, December 26th, 2015

After touching down in North Texas earlier in the day, the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide wasted no time getting back to work on the practice field with its first workout on Saturday afternoon at Coppell High School.


The Crimson Tide (12-1, 8-1 SEC) went through an upbeat, 90-minute session in shells and shorts in the indoor practice facility for the Class 6A Cowboys football team. Coach Nick Saban said his second-seeded Tide are happy to be back in the College Football Playoff for a second year in a row and back in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic to face the No.

December 2014

Spartans Put Final Touches on Prep for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

The mood was light but the focus remained sharp as No. 8 Michigan State got its last taste of AT&T Stadium before its Jan. 1 showdown with No. 5 Baylor in the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

MSU (10-2, 7-1 Big Ten) captured its official bowl memory with a team photo prior to a light walk-through. Spending nearly 45 minutes in t-shirts and shorts, the team was meticulous in putting the final touches on its preparations for the program’s 25th all-time bowl appearance.   

“We just wanted to move around for a little bit,” said head coach Mark Dantonio.

Bears Finish Their Work, Ready To Take On Spartans

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

Baylor completed its final on-field piece of preparation for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic by conducting a walk-through at AT&T Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

The No. 5 Bears (11-1, 8-1 Big 12) spent about an hour doing light work for their New Year’s Day game against No. 8 Michigan State (10-2, 7-1 Big Ten) before heading back to the team hotel for final meetings.

“It has been a great week and it is show time,” Baylor Head Coach Art Briles said earlier in the day.

Michigan State Fine Tunes Gameplan For New Year's Day Battle With Baylor

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

With most of its Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic preparations in the books, No. 8 Michigan State took to the turf on Tuesday afternoon for a final all-out practice at AT&T Stadium.

MSU did not slack off in their fifth Classic workout, conducting a spirited session in shorts and shells that lasted more than two hours. Continuing a program tradition, head coach Mark Dantonio concluded practice with a video tribute to the senior class followed by every senior walking down a receiving line to share final goodbyes with other teammates, coaches and support staff.

Baylor Working for What it Hopes is a Big Finish

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

Competing in a major bowl game is no longer new to Baylor. Now the Bears want to experience winning one.

That was the predominant storyline Tuesday as players went through media day for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic after a light practice at AT&T Stadium.

Baylor was heavily favored but lost to UCF in last year’s Fiesta Bowl. So it’s easy to understand the primary motivation for the No. 5 Bears (11-1, 8-1 Big 12) as they prepare to meet No. 8 Michigan State (10-2, 7-1 Big Ten) on Thursday.

Spartans Take In Another Full Day Surrounding Their Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Prep

Monday, December 29th, 2014

No. 8 Michigan State soaked up another action-packed day, from talking with the media to touching lives to, of course, getting in some work on the practice field, at the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

The day began with the team’s offensive news conference at the Omni Dallas Hotel. Quickly after, the entire roster and head coach Mark Dantonio took a step away from football to spend quality time visiting children at the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. From there, the team regrouped at its headquarters hotel before making the trek back to Arlington for practice.

'Great News', Hospital Visit Punctuate Baylor's Day

Monday, December 29th, 2014

Baylor remained squarely focused on Michigan State on Monday but didn’t mind getting good news for the 2015 season, too.

All-Big 12 defensive end Shawn Oakman announced that he would return for his senior season during a morning news conference for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

“I would classify it as great news,” Bears Head Coach Art Briles said. “Any time you have two guys the caliber of Oakman and Spencer Drango come back and help maintain your program and escalate it, hopefully, to even higher levels, because we still have some mountains to climb, it certainly gives us a better opportunity [to compete for a national championship] when you come out of the gates with guys that have been there.

Michigan State Puts in Busy Day Around North Texas

Sunday, December 28th, 2014

It was a busy day for No. 8 Michigan State as the Spartans began to hit their stride on their third day of preparations for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

Following its morning defensive news conference in Dallas, MSU headed back to Arlington for another physical workout at AT&T Stadium. Head Coach Mark Dantonio took his squad through another intense session in full pads, which once again ran just over two and a half hours.

“You’ve got to get ready.

BU Follows Routine, Anticipates Physical Challenge

Sunday, December 28th, 2014

Keeping your game-week routine intact is challenging during a bowl, but Baylor has stuck pretty close to its usual script.

The Bears (11-1, 8-1 Big 12) practiced for about one hour and 45 minutes Sunday at AT&T Stadium in preparation for the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Thursday.

Getting on the field at 9 a.m. is different than the usual afternoon practices during the regular season. But the practice structure remains the same against Michigan State (10-2, 7-1 Big Ten) as if it were for a Big 12 opponent.

Spartans Spend Second Day at AT&T Stadium

Saturday, December 27th, 2014

No. 8 Michigan State put in serious work with a two-and-a-half hour practice in full pads at AT&T Stadium in preparation for its Jan. 1 matchup with No. 5 Baylor in the 79th Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic.

“(It was a) good practice, just getting our legs back underneath us,” said head coach Mark Dantonio. “It was a long practice, which we’re going to need to play well in the game on Thursday.”

The Spartans (10-2, 7-1 Big Ten) got back at it on the heels of assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi being named head coach at Pittsburgh a day earlier.

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