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August 02, 2010

Dantonio: Conway OK

Redshirt freshman offensive lineman Henry Conway is working out and will be full go for camp, Mark Dantonio just said in the hallway after his podium stint at the Chicago Hyatt McCormick Place.

    Conway missed spring practice with a neck injury -- an injury that provided lingering concern until Conway was cleared by specialists, Dantonio said. As you may recall, Conway was probably the most buzzed-about scout team member last fall, and although he's missed a big chunk of time, he now has to be considered a candidate to get into the playing group at some point in 2010.

    Other Dantonio quick hits:

    * Linebacker Justin Wilson is indeed the lone member of the 2010 recruiting class who won't be in East Lansing for camp. Although he ended up qualifying academically, Dantonio said he'll be in junior college in the fall, and MSU plans to bring him back as long as he takes care of business.

    UPDATE: Here's what Dantonio said about Wilson:

    “Justin will not come in. I think he is academically qualified, but he’s got to perform a little better down the stretch academically. But he is academically qualified, so that’s our decision.”
    Dantonio said Wilson "probably" will be at Fort Scott (Kansas) Community College.
    “That is the plan. It would be the plan at the semester, but it’s got to be a two-way street.”

    Dantonio then was asked about specifics with Wilson:
    “I don’t want to really go there with that, I just feel like there was communication that broke down. And you know, there’s got to be communication. And when you bring a player to school, they have to understand that it’s a privilege to be here. They have to understand that.”

    * Dantonio seems excited by incoming freshmen Mylan Hicks and Darqueze Dennard, who will immediately compete for playing time at cornerback. Dantonio said Hicks could have helped MSU last year, and he also said MSU's veterans told the coaches they had "no mistakes" among the incoming defensive back recruits (based on the seven-on-seven drills that players put themselves through during the summer).

    * I asked Dantonio how Antonio Jeremiah is doing in his weight-loss efforts. He said "up." That doesn't bode well for Jeremiah's quest to compete at right guard.

    * Lots of 3-4 talk today, and Dantonio reiterated that this is a base 4-3 defense, but that MSU wants to do more three-man fronts on running downs -- to get the deep group of linebackers on the field. Clearly, the amount of 3-4 played in 2010 will depend in large part on how various individuals develop and pick up the schemes.

    * Keith Nichol is not coming after all, replaced by Aaron Bates. So it's Bates, Kirk Cousins, Greg Jones. Dantonio said he reconsidered because he wanted to reward Bates for prior achievement, and that he was "projecting" what Nichol would do in the next two seasons at receiver.

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Joe Rexrode
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