Originally written on Little Brother Blog  |  Last updated 11/20/14

"Nobody's safe right now. We don't have a B.J. Cunningham, a Keshawn Martin, that's been established." --MSU wide receivers coach Terry Samuel (Sept. 5, 2012)Freshman Aaron Burbridge looks downfield in his debut against Central Michigan. (Detroit News Photo)

As the search for a big play wide receiver continues, Michigan State turned to some new options against Central Michigan. Some very new options.

True freshmen Aaron Burbridge and Macgarrett Kings saw the field for the first time in the Spartans' 41-7 win and, barring injury, no longer will redshirt this year.

Each had two fourth-quarter receptions, but more importantly, made people miss after the catch. Message received.

Behind the clear-cut number one receiver Bennie Fowler, the competition remains open. But among a bevy of options such as Tony Lippett, DeAnthony Arnett, Keith Mumphery, Andre Sims Jr. and Jeremy Langford, some things are starting to take shape.

Firstly, Langford appears headed back to running back in anticipation that Le'Veon Bell leaves early and Langford will be needed there next season. Secondly, it seems probable that Lippett could move back to cornerback next season as Johnny Adams graduates and with the possibility that Darqueze Dennard leaves early. Neither of those things is set in stone, but seem possible.

This much is certain: The Spartans miss the abilities of Keshawn Martin greatly, maybe moreso than any other offensive player from last season.

That is where Burbridge and Kings step in.

Burbridge brings a downfield threat that the Spartans need to open up the playbook and become a true two-dimensional offense. How good is the freshman? Well, he missed time in fall camp with a knee injury and still is on the field this early in his career. The top-rated player from the state of Michigan in the class of 2012 had two receptions for 14 yards.

Kings is the closest thing to Martin on the Michigan State roster, he is a smaller wide receiver with a lot of speed. His first reception came on a bubble screen and he made a man miss with a nifty spin move for a gain of 10 yards. His second reception came on a quick pass from Connor Cook, where he again made a man miss and gained 8 yards.

All four receptions were on short passes -- just getting the young receivers used to being on the field and involved -- but the speed and big play ability is what is getting them chances. And those chances will continue to come for the players now that their redshirts have been burned.

"We ran some hitches to get them the ball to see if they could make plays and they did," Mark Dantonio said. "... We're not going to hold anybody back if they can help us. They (Burbridge and Kings) knew the situation and we put them in there. Now we'll continue to work them in there."

While the battles at wide receiver are far from settled -- an eight-man race for snaps still prevalant -- Burbridge and Kings should factor greatly into the plans of the coaching staff moving forward.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Richard Sherman: Marshawn Lynch having MVP season

Curt Schilling tweeted advice to Johnny Manziel

Aaron Rodgers buys TVs for Packers teammates

Harbaugh smiled when asked about Michigan's bday tweet

Jackie Robinson West Little League accused of cheating

Police: Fire that burned down McClain's home 'suspicious'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Furniture store will refund purchases if OSU wins title

What each NFC team in the hunt should ask for from Santa

Is SI ashamed to mention Jameis Winston on its cover?

Kobe Bryant disappointed Lakers didn't get Rajon Rondo

Niners OT Anthony Davis takes shot at offensive coordinator

Report: Josh Smith expected to sign with Rockets

WATCH: Quincy Acy ejected for throwing punch at John Wall

Billy Beane did not want to trade Josh Donaldson

Peyton Manning plans to be back with Broncos next year

WATCH: Blazers announcer botches Damian Lillard call

WATCH: P.K. Subban disguises himself, surprises kids for Xmas

Baseball cards: a fan's love for the ultimate stocking stuffer

Packers game is a career defining moment for Stafford

A look inside Jason Grilli's contract with the Braves

10 Week 17 NFL matchups that will impact the playoffs

WATCH: Bahamas Bowl ends on insane Hail Mary play

Mike Yeo slams Wild for not having 'winner's attitude'

Michigan St. QB, Ohio State TE have awkward Twitter exchange

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

WATCH: Announcer botches call

Police: McClain fire 'suspicious'

10 Week 17 NFL matchups that will impact the playoffs

Bahamas Bowl ends on crazy Hail Mary

49ers OT Davis takes shot at coordinator

Will FIFA ever care to change?

Top storyline for each Week 17 game

40 great Christmas-related sports names

Nick Mangold and dealing with feelings as a sports fan

Ibaka, Aldridge ejected for scuffle

Baseball cards: a fan's love for the ultimate stocking stuffer

Nick Young on Kobe-less win: He needs to pass

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.