Detroit News predictions: MSU vs. Washington State
Matt Charboneau, Angelique S. Chengelis, John Niyo and Bob Wojnowski predict the outcome of Thursday's Michigan State-Washington State Holiday Bowl game.
Matt Charboneau: The Spartans will have their hands full containing the pass-happy Washington State offense. It’s something they haven’t seen much of and QB Luke Falk runs it well. But the Cougars are without two of their top receivers and they don’t run the ball much. Offensively, Michigan State will need to find balance against a WSU defense that ranks No. 14 overall in the nation. It could take MSU time to adjust defensively, but once it does, getting that 10th victory will provide plenty of motivation. Michigan State, 34-30
Angelique S. Chengelis: Quarterback Brian Lewerke will have to put the pressure on for MSU's offense, but the running backs will have to carry a large part of the production. The Spartans will give coach Mark Dantonio his 100th victory with the program. Michigan State, 28-24
John Niyo: Michigan State already flipped the narrative this season. But 10 wins means something more, and Mark Dantonio's young team certainly had room to improve with December's distraction-free bowl practices. Michigan State, 31-28
Bob Wojnowski: Luke Falk and the Cougars’ passing game is prolific, and will be dangerous even with two top receivers leaving the team. Washington State has a surprisingly tough defense that rushes the passer well, so the Spartans will try again to control possession with their running game. More likely, Brian Lewerke will have to pass to keep up, and he will for a while, but Falk will burn Michigan State with completions over the middle. Washington State, 27-20