** Of the four teams to make the College Football Playoff last season, the least likely to return in 2016 is Michigan State.
** Here’s the Spartans’ schedule, with the most formidable foes in green and other challenges in italics.
September 2 Furman
September 17 at Notre Dame
September 24 Wisconsin
October 1 at Indiana
October 8 Brigham Young (Not quite a challenge because it’s at home)
October 15 Northwestern (Not quite a challenge because it’s at home)
October 22 at Maryland
October 29 Michigan (Wolverines won’t forget last year’s Spartan miracle at the Big House)
November 5 at Illinois
November 12 Rutgers
November 19 Ohio State (Buckeyes won’t forget last year’s last-second loss in the rain)
November 26 at Penn State (Dangerous after emotional game vs Ohio State)
Far from an easy schedule. The saving grace might be that three of the four toughest games (and five of the toughest seven) are at home.