Peculiar play: On third-and-goal in the second quarter, Michigan State ran a reverse to wideout Tony Lippett, who threw desperately into the end zone for No. 92, tight end Andrew Gleichert. The 263-pounder seemed lost and shoved a Husker defender, drawing an offensive pass interference call. NU declined and MSU kicked a field goal.
Questionable call: On third-and-11 from the 18 with 1:10 left in the first half, Nebraska could’ve thrown and tried to convert the first down, knowing it had three timeouts. It could’ve taken a knee or run conservatively into the line, letting the clock run down to 30 seconds before punting — MSU had no timeouts. Instead, NU called a quarterback draw and Tommy Armstrong fumbled, setting up the Spartans’ TD. It’s not a bad call, but if you’re not trying to convert the first down, it’s probably wiser to just run it into the line.
Noticed: Michigan State’s improvement at receiver is drastic. That position plagued the Spartans in 2012, but multiple wideouts made tough catches Saturday to move the chains.
Point of concern: Nebraska’s special teams, particularly punt returns and coverage. Jordan Westerkamp fumbled a return in the first quarter. In the second, Daniel Davie was flagged for kick catching interference after the Michigan State returner waved for a fair catch, a 15-yard penalty.
Rave review: Sam Burtch wasn’t a critical member of the NU receiving corps to start the season. He is now. The sophomore walk-on from Murdock, Neb., had a career day, catching five balls for 86 yards and a TD.