April 1, 2011

Standing on the shoulders of Little Giants

EAST LANSING - Replacing Greg Jones will be the dominant chatter. But in East Lansing, there's never been bigger shoes to fill for a punter.

Redshirt freshman Mike Sadler walked meekly into the lobby of the Skandalaris Center Friday evening. A hoard of media circled around him. He looked over his shoulder in the direction of the associate athletic director - like a last glance back at your parents when they drop you off for your first day of school - and asked if it was OK to start answering questions.

His predecessor Aaron Bates had been more than a punter. He was a captain. He was best friends and roommates with the quarterback. People say he was Dantonio's favorite.

Oh, and he threw a 29-yard fake field goal pass for a touchdown to beat Notre Dame in overtime. Little Giants. Big shoes.

Sadler's lip quivered a little. He answered his first question by letting us know how good the team looked. He stood in the middle of the Hall of History for a long five minutes and tried to explain what it's like to replace a legend.

Video by Gillian Van Stratt


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