Michigan State is primed for another strong season under Mark Dantonio, and the Spartans will look to lean on the leadership of three players that have truly been through it all.

Arguably no other team in college football has seen such a drastic swing in results in a way that MSU has over the past few seasons. After winning the B1G and making an appearance in the College Football Playoff, the Spartans responded with a heart-breaking 3-9 season in 2016 amidst issues on and off the field.

After experiencing the bottom in 2016, MSU remarkably responded with an impressive 10-3 season in 2017. Expectations are high once again heading into 2018, and the team will lean on the experiences of captains Khari Willis, Brian Lawerke, and Joe Bachie to lead the team.

When it comes to his role as a captain, Willis said it’s simply all about continually setting a high standard for yourself and others. Stephen Brooks with 247 Sports shared his comments:

“You just try to make sure that you set a high standard,” Willis said. “The standard here has been high since coach D’s been here, and you want to maintain that standard and try to inch-by-inch raise the bar.”

For Bachie, he pointed out that going through the ups and downs of 2016 and last season’s 10-win campaign have prepared this year’s captains for anything down the road:

“You look at all three of us and we’ve been here for the ups and downs,” Bachie said. “Those two guys went to the playoffs, come back, (go) 3-9, get to 10-3 last year. We know the rights and wrongs; the dos and don’ts. That’s something that we can give to this team and move forward with.”

While expectations will be high for the Spartans, they will face a tough road ahead in what looks to be a loaded B1G East. Nevertheless, this year’s team has a solid group of captains to lead the team on the field.