MAACO Bowl Las Vegas Boise State Broncos Vs. Washington Huskies 12/22/12 Ryan’s Free College Football Pick Against the Spread
The Washington Huskies finished the regular season with a 7-5 record overall and a 5-4 record in the PAC 12 Conference. Washington had high hopes coming into the season with junior QB Keith Price entering his third year in head coach Steve Sarkisian’s system. However, the Huskies came up short in their biggest games early in the season, with losses at LSU in September and a three-game slide in October where Washington was outscored by an average of 28.5 points. The Huskies were on their way to a five-game winning streak to close out the regular season before blowing an 18-points lead to rival Washington State. The Huskies will now try to earn their first eight-win season since 2001. Price finished with 2,484 passing yards and 18 touchdowns, along with 11 interceptions. Price’s main target was WR Austin Seferian-Jenkins who finished with 63 catches for 789 yards and 6 touchdowns. The star of the offense was sophomore RB Biship Sankey, who rushed 261 times for 1,234 yards and 15 touchdowns for the Huskies. The Washington defense surrendered an average of 164.3 yards per game on the ground during the regular season. Overall, the defense has allowed an average of 23.8 points per game and 353 total yards to opposing offenses.
The Boise State Broncos finished with a 10-2 record overall and a 7-1 record in the MWC. Head coach Chris Peterson and the Broncos were disappointed with their 10-2 record, even though they lost four-year starter QB Kellen Moore after last season. Boise State will be making their 11th straight bowl appearance and third in a row at the MAACO Bowl in Las Vegas. The Broncos beat Utah 26-3 in the 2010 game and defeated Arizona State 56-24 in Las Vegas last year. Junior QB Joe Southwick took over at quarterback this season and finished with 2,466 passing yards, to go along with 17 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. Southwick’s main target was WR Matt Miller who caught 60 balls for 679 yards and 5 touchdowns. Senior RB D.J. Harper finished the season with back-to-back 100-yard games, and finished the season with 1,065 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns. The Broncos defense is the strongest unit on this year’s team. The defense gave up more than 20 points only three times and never let a team hit 30 points during the regular season. On average, the Broncos defense allowed 14.9 points per game and 304.7 total yards per game. However, the defense has not performed great against the run this year, giving up an average of 141.3 yards on the ground.
Washington is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss, and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. Boise State is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 bowl games, and 6-0 ATS in their last 6 neutral site games.
Boise State’s rush defense is a weakness and the Huskies will look to exploit the Broncos front line in this game. However, the Broncos will have plenty of time to prepare and if they can contain Washington’s rushing attack, the Huskies will have trouble passing the ball on the Boise State secondary. On the other side, Boise State should be able to establish a balanced attack offensively and score enough points to get the win. I’m taking Boise State to win by 10 to 14 points in this one.