Arizona State vs. West Virginia - 1/2/16 College Football Cactus Bowl Pick, Odds, and Prediction
West Virginia Mountaineers (7-5) at Arizona State Sun Devils (6-6)
College Football: Saturday, January 2, 2016 at 10:15 pm (Chase Field)
The Line: Arizona State Sun Devils -1 -- Over/Under: 65 See the Latest Odds
The West Virginia Mountaineers and Arizona State Sun Devils play Saturday night in the Motel 6 Cactus Bowl at Chase Field.
The West Virginia Mountaineers look for their second bowl victory under head coach Dana Holgorsen. Skyler Howard is completing 54.8 percent of his passes for 2,613 yards, 21 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Howard has three passing touchdowns in his last three games. Shelton Gibson and Jordan Thompson have combined for 1,173 receiving yards and eight touchdowns while Daikiel Shorts Jr. has 38 receptions. The West Virginia Mountaineers ground game is averaging 235.2 yards per contest, and Wendell Smallwood leads the way with 1,447 yards and nine touchdowns. Defensively, West Virginia is allowing 23.2 points and 386.2 yards per game. Nick Kwiatkoski leads the Mountaineers with 80 tackles, Daryl Worley has six interceptions and Noble Nwachukwu has 8.5 sacks. Yodny Cajuste is questionable with a foot injury.
USA TODAY Sports
The Arizona State Sun Devils hope to win back-to-back bowl games for the first time since Dirk Koetter was coach. Mike Bercovici is completing 60.3 percent of his passes for 3,436 yards, 26 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Bercovici has seven touchdown passes in his last three games. Devin Lucien and Tim White have combined for 1,484 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns while D.J. Foster has 54 receptions. The Arizona State Sun Devils ground game is averaging 185.2 yards per contest, and Demario Richard leads the way with 1,056 yards and seven touchdowns. Defensively, Arizona State is allowing 32.7 points and 446.1 yards per game. Jordan Simone leads the Sun Devils with 91 tackles, Kareem Orr has five interceptions and Antonio Longino has 10 sacks. Nick Ralston and Grant Martinez are questionable.
We know both of these teams can put up points. However, it's Arizona State's ability to pressure the pressure that makes me back the Sun Devils in this matchup. Arizona State is ranked second in the country with 44 sacks and West Virginia is 92nd in the country with 30 sacks allowed. Not to mention this game will be played in Arizona, which should give the Sun Devils a huge advantage in terms of home field.
Look for the Sun Devils to win back-to-back bowls for the first time in quite some time.