MSU football coach Mark Dantonio is about halfway through his second recruiting class-- he now has 11 verbal commitments with the addition of wide receiver Bennie Fowler from Detroit Country Day.  He is the third receiver from that school to become a Spartan in the past five years, but the first Dantonio has landed.

     All of Dantonio's second class will sign in February and play senior seasons in high school this fall.  So MSU has about eleven more recruits to land, give or take one or two along the way.

     Surprise-- 68-year old Billy Packer out after 34 years of calling the Final Four as an analyst, first for NBC and the final 28 years with CBS.  Former Ohio State star Clark Kellogg, a studio analyst, takes over for Packer and he will work with play by play man Jim Nantz.  Reasons for being let go?  No one is officially saying, but age clearly didn't help Packer.  I was always amused over the years by the numerous MSU fans who didn't like Packer because they always felt he was biased toward the Spartans whenever he called their games in the tournament.  No sense arguing his side-- listeners hear what they hear.  He has an ACC background and everyone knows it and some fans can't get past that.

     Is this the best Lugnuts team in the franchise's 13-year history?  It's pretty good and to be the best it will have to win the Midwest League title which two other teams have done.  But these Lugnuts are 55-39 over all, 16-8 in the second half of the season, the league's best second half record through Sunday.  The Toronto Blue Jays have their eyes on a number of these players, many of whom will be moved up somewhere else next year.  The Lugnuts have Tuesday off, then begin a series in Peoria against the Chiefs on Wednesday.



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