Saturday’s victory over Notre Dame should have been one of the most enjoyable moments in Mark Dantonio’s coaching career. Instead, after speaking with the media, visiting with recruits, and spending time with many friends and family members who came to the game, Dantonio felt ill and made a trip to Sparrow Hospital where it was determined he needed a metallic stent to open a blocked blood vessel leading to his heart.
Even before the news release on Dantonio’s health, fans had to worry about a Spartans letdown in this coming week’s game against Northern Colorado. It is never easy to get a team up for a lesser-known opponent after winning such a fantastic game like the one against Notre Dame.
Members of the Dantonio family have told SpartanDiegest.com that Coach D is doing fine and expected to return home early this week.
As for the status of the Spartans football team, do not expect much to change.
This is a veteran staff that has been together for several years. All but three members of this staff have been together since the 2004 season in Cincinnati. Offensive line coach Dan Roushar joined Dantonio’s Cincinnati staff in 2005, while Quarterback coach Dave Warner joined the staff in Cincinnati in 2006.
Running backs coach Brad Salem just joined the staff this summer when Dan Enos left to become the head coach at Central Michigan.
While you can’t place a value on Mark Dantonio not being on the sidelines, you can rest assure the Spartans head coach has already made plans incase such an emergency would to ever occur. That is just how detail oriented Dantonio has been in life and his career.
Spartan fans should relax, as this week’s game will see Don Treadwell running the Spartans controls. Treadwell is a well-respected coach who many feel is on the verge of taking over his own program soon. Treadwell was a finalist for the Miami Ohio job in 2009 before withdrawing his name from consideration. He and Mark Dantonio have been long time friends who have coached together for several seasons. They both have total trust in the other and understand each other’s strengths and weakness.
While Dantonio has always had a defensive mindset, Treadwell has been his offensive equal.
As the Spartans prepare for this week’s game, rest assured the Spartans locker room, meetings, and practices will continue without a single change. Don Treadwell will keep things as they have been since joining Mark Dantonio in 2004. As for who will take on more responsibilities, keep the following in mind.
On offense, coach Treadwell will have former offensive coordinators Dan Roushar, Dave Warner, and Brad Salem to call upon.
The Spartans defense will miss Coach Dantonio’s presences, but Pat Narduzzi has long been a trusted coach who has worked within the Dantonio system since 2004.
Players will respond to these coaches and be driven to keep their work ethic and desire to continue on what is shaping up to be a special season for Spartans football.