MSU's Raequan Williams, LJ Scott, Josiah Scott and Brian Lewerke look ahead to playing in the Redbox Bowl The Detroit News
East Lansing – On Thursday night after Michigan State wrapped up practice, there was some confusion about whether junior Raequan Williams was preparing to play his final game for the Spartans or return for his senior season.
He gave contrasting answers when asked by several different reports, indicating to some that he intended to wait until after the bowl game to discuss it with his family while responding to a question from Spartan Mag, a Rivals.com site, that he was, indeed, coming back.
On Friday morning, Williams responded on Twitter and apologized for the confusion.
“Sorry to cause any confusion … Yes I am staying in EL!” Williams posted.
It’s good news for Michigan State, which has the No. 1 rushing defense in the nation. Much of that is thanks to the play of Williams.
A fourth-year junior, Williams has started 28 consecutive games at nose tackle and this season earned first-team All-Big Ten honors from the Associated Press after picking up third-team accolades from the coaches and media. The native of Chicago has career bests this season in tackles (49), tackles for loss (9.5) and pass break-ups (5).
Williams ranks second among active Spartans with 20.5 career tackles for loss, including six sacks, in 36 career games.
While Williams has opted to return, junior cornerback Justin Layne announced last week he is leaving for the NFL Draft and it was confirmed this week by coach Mark Dantonio that Layne will not play in the Redbox Bowl against Oregon on Dec. 31.
Defensive end Kenny Willekes and linebacker Joe Bachie, both juniors, indicated they would wait until after the bowl game to make any decisions on next season.
Safety Khari Willis and running back LJ Scott have both accepted invitations to the Senior Bowl, Scott after changing his mind and opting not to return for a fifth season. Senior tight end Matt Sokol will play in the East-West Shrine Game.