Michigan State Spartans defeat Minnesota Golden Gophers, 31-8

EAST LANSING, MICH. - Jeff Horton lived in Nevada for two decades, so the Gophers' interim coach likes to describe himself as a gambler.

He finally rolled the dice a few times Saturday.

Most notable was his decision to use sophomore MarQueis Gray at quarterback for two of the Gophers' nine possessions. But Horton put some cross-your-fingers faith in tight end Eric Lair, too.

When Gray's third-quarter drive stalled at the Gophers 22-yard line, Horton, facing a fourth-...

EAST LANSING, MICH. - In an age of specialty, of third-down fullbacks and nickel-package safeties, senior Curtis Hughes has found himself a singular talent, too: knocking bigger people around.

Hughes, a blocking tight end his entire career at Minnesota, was dragooned into service as a lineman on Saturday, the result of the Gophers' injury- and suspension-caused lack of depth.

Wait, not just as a lineman. As a defensive lineman.

"On the goal line, we were pulling o...

EAST LANSING, MICH. — Maybe it's his sense of humor. Could be the can't-keep-me-down demeanor. Or perhaps MarQueis Gray's secret is ... his singing voice?

"He sings in the huddle sometimes," said tight end Eric Lair. "He'll say, 'You want me to sing, go out and make the play right.'"

Too bad they still don't make enough of them. But the sophomore clearly possesses the ability to delight his Minnesota teammates, and Saturday's choppy 31-8 loss to Michigan State -- hig...