Mel Tucker messed around and went 11-2 in 2021. What would be considered a successful 2022 Michigan State football campaign?
With the 2022 season officially less than a month from kicking off, Michigan State football fans are craving the same amount of success that they saw a year ago.
Mel Tucker led the Spartans to an 11-2 season with a win over Michigan and a Peach Bowl win, but a blowout loss to Ohio State and trip-up at Purdue really put a damper on things in November.
It was still an extremely successful year.
Compared to the expectations (Vegas had the Spartans winning around six games), the 2021 season was better than what anyone could have imagined. No one saw this team finishing top three in the Big Ten East, let alone winning 11 games and a New Year’s Six bowl. Unlike the previous few seasons, Michigan State exceeded expectations, and then some.
With the bar raised by Tucker, expectations are high for Tucker in 2022
What would be considered a “successful” Michigan State football season?
That’s a great question. Obviously, winning 10-plus games would be a more-than-welcome end result, but would that be good enough to be considered a success?
If Tucker can win 10-plus games again, that would undoubtedly be a success. Winning the Big Ten is the goal, but being in that mix at the end of the season would be a great follow-up to 2021. A 10-2 regular season would be impressive with that tough schedule; many fans would also take 9-3 with a 10th win coming in a New Year’s Day bowl game.
It’s tough to say what would really make 2022 of success, but I think if the defense can show improvement, the offense keeps pace with 2021’s thanks to Jalen Berger or Jarek Broussard breaking out, and winning at least 1-of-3 against Michigan, Ohio State, and Penn State, it would qualify as “successful.” Michigan State must also keep the Ohio State game respectable.
The best-case scenario for Michigan State would be 11-1 with two wins in the three games against Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State. The worst-case would be 6-6 or 7-5.
Success would be nine-plus wins. You could argue that an 8-4 season would also be a success, but I think the bar has been raised that much by Tucker.
Michigan State has a more talented team in 2022 but the schedule is tougher and Kenneth Walker III is gone so it’s fair to expect a slight step back. Nine wins should be the minimal expectation moving forward, but eight would be acceptable.
Tucker isn’t content with acceptable, however.