Sparks will fly December 28th at this year’s 40th Annual San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl. Each year the Holiday Bowl matches up football teams from the Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences. This will be the first match-up of teams ranked nationally in the top 20 since 2008. Michigan State University is ranked Number 16 and Washington State University comes in 18th.
Washington State completed the regular season 9-3 with a 6-3 record in the Pac-12. Their victories against nationally ranked teams included USC and Stanford. Cougars head coach Mike Leach is now in his sixth year leading the program.
This year will mark Washington State’s fourth time competing in the SDCCU Holiday Bowl, where their record is 1-2. The Cougars lost to Minnesota 17-12 in 2016. Washington State beat Texas 28-20 in 2003, and lost to BYU 38-36 in 1981. The program’s overall bowl game record is 7-6.
The Cougars feature five local players who starred in Southwestern & Sunbelt leagues. Darrien Molton from Chaparral,Treshon Broughton and Greg Hold III from Vista Murrieta represent the Southwestern. Heritage’s Jamal Morrow and Jeremiah Mitchell from Elsinore are here from the Sunbelt.
Michigan State finished the regular season 9-3 (and 7-2 in the Big Ten). The Spartans notched victories against top 10-ranked teams Michigan and Penn State. The team is led by 11th year head coach Mark Dantonio.
The Spartans will be making their first appearance in the SDCCU Holiday Bowl. This will be Michigan State’s 10th bowl game appearance under Dantonio, the most for any coach in the program’s history. The Spartans’ overall bowl game record is 11-15.
The game will feature one of the nation’s top passing offenses in Washington State, against a stout Michigan State defense. Led by quarterback Luke Falk, the Cougars passed for 4,497 yards in 2017, averaging 374 yards per game. Falk threw 35 touchdowns.
The Spartan defense held opponents to 196 passing yards per game in 2017, and tallied 28 sacks and 13 interceptions including five by safety David Dowell.
This year’s game will be televised nationally on FS1, with pregame coverage beginning at 5:30 P.M. For more information and tickets call 619-283-5808, or visit at www.HolidayBowl.com
Photos of Last Years Holiday Bowl Game by Scott Padgett
Press Release from the 40th Annual San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl