The Holiday Bowl is a classic Big Ten versus Pac-12 confrontation between two 9-3 teams in Michigan State and Washington State. This will be the last of four bowls played on Dec. 28th.
The Holiday Bowl began in 1978 and was an immediate hit with viewers, as eight of first nine contests were decided by a touchdown or less, including five by a single point. Today its reputation has changed and for those making college football picks, they are very aware that underdogs are 14-6 ATS the past two decades and on a 5-0 ATS run.
When last looking at the college football odds, the Cougars were a 2.5-point choice over the Spartans with a total of 45.
The Spartans should excited to be in San Diego or anywhere for that matter, after missing a bowl game last year for the first time in coach Mark Dantonio’s 11 seasons. The Michigan State offense was mostly uneven this season in averaging a mere 23.1 points a game (106th nationally). Dantonio was frequently glowing in comments about his QB Brian Lewerke, but the results seldom matched the talk and the Spartans were 77th in passing at 215.4 yards per game. Lewerke is a good enough athlete and ran for 486 yards. A year after being unusually weak defensively, Michigan State roared back and finished 9th in total defense and permitted just 20.2 PPG. How their defense plays in the this encounter will be extremely important.