November 18, 2008
Video: Ringer is fresh and focused after bye week
EAST LANSING - After carrying the ball 353 times in 11 consecutive games in as many weeks, Javon Ringer deserved a bye week as much as or more so than Spartan teammates.
During the bye week, however, Ringer was passed by Iowa's Shonn Greene as the leading rusher in the Big Ten conference. With just 37 yards separating the Big Ten's top two running backs, Ringer's performance at Penn State will go a long way toward determining the conference's leading rusher.
Ringer will need all of the energy he can muster to surpass Greene in the final Big Ten game of his Spartan career. The senior from Dayton, Ohio, has more energy after a week away from football than he has had in quite awhile. Ringer has also used the off-week to continue to gain back some of the weight that he lost during a week-long battle with a stomach virus knocked him off his game as much as anything done by Wisconsin's defense on Nov. 1.
"Not getting that pounding on Saturday has given everybody a chance to get their bodies back," said Ringer who is now at 202 pounds after losing 12 pounds during the final week of October. "Especially for me, it has given me a chance to get my legs back. And for our receivers, our o-line and our defense, everybody is flying around, everybody is excited, and everybody is kind of anxious for Saturday."
Ringer would gladly concede a rushing title to Greene or any other back in the Big Ten if it means a conference championship for the Spartans.
"Everything going through my mind is about the big opportunity that we have," said Ringer. "We still can accomplish a great thing if we can come away with a win at Penn State. It is actually a reality; we are actually playing for something big right now."
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