Fiesta Bowl Prediction: Penn State vs. Washington

Last Updated: 2017-12-30

fiesta bowl free pickThe third bowl game of Saturday could be a pretty good one, as the Washington Huskies do battle with Penn State in the Fiesta Bowl. The Nittany Lions are favored by 3 and the total on the game is 54.

Penn State is being hit hard by bettors and it’s easy to see why when you look at the bowl results, as the Big Ten has looked pretty good, with Ohio State and Michigan State posting impressive victories, and the Pac-12 has been the recipient of a few butt kickings, with USC and Oregon good examples.

The teams are pretty comparable when you look at their raw stats, with Penn State averaging 41.6 points per game and allowing 15.5, while Washington scores 36.9 and allows 14.5.

The Nittany Lions averaged 16.3 more points than their opponents allow and did the majority of their damage through the air, but likes to have close to a 50-50 mix of runs and passes, as they rushed 34 times per game and threw 35. Penn State gained 4.9 yards per rush and 8.2 yards per pass attempt.

On defense, Penn State allowed 10.3 fewer points than their opponents averaged and were most effective against the run, allowing 3.4 yards per carry to teams that averaged 4.0 yards. Passing defense wasn’t great, but not bad, either, as Penn State allowed 57.9% completions against teams who averaged 58.5%, but did allow .9 fewer yards per attempt than their opponents averaged.

The Huskies were only a +5.3 on offense, as they played some teams that did allow a number of points, but UW was a +12.2 on defense, thanks to a rushing defense that allowed just 2.6 yards per carry to teams who averaged 4.0 yards.

The Huskies will need to get their ground game going to stay in this one and Washington isn’t bad running the ball, gaining 5.1 yards per carry against teams who allow 4.7 yards. The Huskies run 37 times and throw 27 times per game.

Both teams were 3-2 on the road, scoring less than normal and allowing slightly more points.

With the public all over Penn State, going to go the other way and grab the Huskies +3. The sportsbooks kept the number at 2.5 longer than they should have, but the flood of money coming in on Penn State finally forced them to adjust the spread. So, in what should be a good game, will ride with the ‘Dawgs.

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