The 13th-ranked Michigan State Spartans became the second team from a BCS conference to clinch a division title (The Florida State Seminoles have already clinched the ACC Atlantic Division title) when they defeated the Northwestern Wildcats 30-6.
The Spartans improved to 10-1 on the season and 7-0 in the Big 10, winning the Legends division for the second time in three seasons. Northwestern, on the other hand, has lost seven games in a row after a 4-0 start and will not be going back to a bowl game this season.
After a slow start, Michigan State woke up in the second quarter when Jeremy Langford’s 20-yard touchdown run gave them a 7-3 lead. Following a Northwestern field goal, quarterback Connor Cook found Bennie Fowler, who made a spectacular grab (GIF) and raced 86 yards to the end zone to give Michigan State a 14-6 halftime lead.
Cook and the Spartans poured it on in the second half, driving up and down the field on the Wildcats’ defense with relative ease, pushing their lead to 30-6 early in the fourth quarter on Langford’s second touchdown run, a 37-yard scamper.
On the day, Cook completed 16-of-23 passes for 293 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions while Langford rushed for 150 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries.
Northwestern quarterback/wide receiver Kain Colter was injured in the first quarter when he was hit by Michigan State safety Isiah Lewis (here is the GIF). Colter did not return and Lewis was ejected from the game for targeting.
Colter’s injury forced Trevor Siemian into full-time duty. Siemian went 25-of-43 for 227 yards with two interceptions.
Michigan State will wrap up their regular season when they host the 25th-ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers next week. Northwestern will close out their disappointing 2013 season when they travel to Illinois to take on the rival Fighting Illini Saturday.