Spartans' Maxwell ready to get started

CHICAGO -- Andrew Maxwell had a unique distinction among players at Big Ten media days: He is the only one who has never started a game at the college level.

But the fact that Michigan State brought the junior quarterback to Chicago shows you the confidence they have in Kirk Cousins' successor.

"It's definitely an honor and flattering to see," Maxwell told ESPN.com. "I don't have any starting experience under my belt."

Maxwell hasn't even completed a full spring practice as a starting quarterback. He suffered a sprained right knee a little more than halfway through spring drills and was sidelined for the rest of practice.

"It was tough in the timing of it," he said. "Up until that point, we had two or three really good practices on offense. We were really clicking. So it was kind of disheartening to have to sit out and watch the first group go on without me.

"I wanted to get those reps and start building relationships with the guys, but I couldn't. Obviously, that's going to put a heavier weight on training camp and the reps I've got to get done there."

The good news is, the knee is not a lingering problem. Michigan State held him out of the spring mostly for precautionary reasons, and Maxwell said he has done every workout and every run this summer. He expects to be full-go for training camp, though he might want to cut down on the scrambling in practice since that's how he got hurt the first time.

"I get razzed by some guys on the team," Maxwell said. "[Linebacker] Danny Folino told me, 'If you were a little better scrambler and a little quicker, you wouldn't be in this situation.'"

August will be an important time for Maxwell, but the Spartans are confident that he's the guy to lead them back to another Legends Division title.

"He's played for us for three years, so it's not like he's a guy who will have to learn the offense," head coach Mark Dantonio said. "He's a very quick study. What he needs to do is get back in rhythm with his wideouts, but they've been throwing all summer."

And maybe next year, Maxwell will be back in Chicago with plenty of experience under his belt.