Where: University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona
Date & Time: Saturday, December 30, 2017 at 4:00 PM ET
Spread: Penn State -2
Over/Under Total: 55
Quick Pick: Washington Huskies +2
The Washington Huskies will meet up with the Penn State Nittany Lions in Glendale, Arizona for the 2017 Playstation Fiesta Bowl. This game is being played at the University of Phoenix Stadium and will kickoff at 4:00 PM ET.
Playstation Fiesta Bowl
The Playstation Fiesta Bowl is an annual college football game that is played each year during the NCAA’s Bowl Season. The Fiesta Bowl has been played each year in Arizona since 1971.
The Playstation Fiesta Bowl has been called many names over the years including Sunkist Fiesta Bowl, IBM OS/2 Fiesta Bowl, Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, Vizio Fiesta Bowl and the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl.
The Fiesta Bowl no longer has “Conference Tie-ins” and rather use at large spots from the Group of 5. This year, the Fiesta Bowl will feature the Washington Huskies and the Penn State Nittany Lions.
Penn State has appeared in the Fiesta Bowl 6 times in the history of the program and are 6-0 in those 6 bowl games. Penn State hasn’t appeared in a Fiesta Bowl since 1997, when they beat the Texas Longhorns 38-15. This will be the first time that the Washington Huskies have ever appeared in the Fiesta Bowl. .
Previous Matchup History
The Nittany Lions and the Huskies have faced off against each other two times in the history of the two programs, once in the 1983 Aloha Bowl and once in 1921 during the regular season. The Penn State Nittany Lions won both games, 13-10 and 21-7.
Washington Huskies 10-2 (PAC-12)
The Washington Huskies finished up the regular season with a 10-2 record. The Huskies won 4 out of their last 5 games overall and their only two losses this year came against Stanford and Arizona State, by a combined 14 points!
The Huskies rely heavily on their defense, which is ranked 5th in the FBS. The simply do not allow teams to move the ball on them and they allow them to score even less. The Huskies held 9 of their 12 opponents to 16 or less points in the regular season.
The Huskies are led by junior quarterback Jake Browning. Browning is a deadly accurate passer that has completed 68.8% of his passing attempts this year. Browning has thrown 18 touchdowns and only 5 interceptions. Browning has also ran for 6 touchdowns on the year. The Huskies have a very talented running back in the backfield in Myles Gaskin. Gaskin has rushed for 1282 yards and 19 touchdowns on the year.
Washington has appeared in 36 bowl games in the history of the program and have gone 18-17-1 overall in those games. In the Huskies last bowl game, they lost 24-7 in last years Peach Bowl to the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Penn State Nittany Lions 10-2 (BIG 10)
The Penn State Nittany Lions had a really good year and had it not been for back to back losses against Ohio State and Michigan State, both of which were on the road, the Nittany Lions could be playing for a national championship spot. The Nittany Lions lost both of those games by a combined 4 points! They ended the regular season 10-2 overall and 7-2 in the BIG 10.
The Nittany Lions are led at QB by junior Trace McSorley. McSorley is considered to be an early contender for next year’s Heisman Trophy and will be looking to improve those considerations in the Fiesta Bowl. McSorley completed 65% of his passing attempts on the year for 3228 yards, 28 touchdowns and 8 interceptions. McSorley also accounted for 11 touchdowns on the ground this year.The Nittany Lions also have one of the most elusive running backs in the nation in Saquon Barkley. Barkley carried the ball 199 times for 1134 yards and 16 touchdowns on the year.
McSorley, Barkley and the rest of the Nittany Lions offense will be without a key part to their 2017 season. Former Nittany Lions Offensive Coordinator Joe Moorhead left Happy Valley to take the Mississippi State Head Coaching job. Moorhead was the center point for the Penn State offensive game plan and it is not certain how much this will affect them with game planning for the Fiesta Bowl.
The Nittany Lions have appeared in 47 bowl games in their history. They are 28-17-2 in those bowl games and come into this game making a bowl in 3 consecutive years. The Nittany Lions have not played well in these recent bowl games going 1-4 in their last 5 bowl games and 2-5 in their last 7 bowl games.
Playstation Fiesta Bowl Handicapping
This game comes down to one of the best running games in the NCAA against the best rushing defense in the NCAA! That means the Penn State offense will have to come up with some passing plays to beat Washington with the pass…..not so fast…The Huskies passing defense is only allowing 185.1 yards per game through the air which is 19th best in the FBS. Defense wins championship and Washington has plenty of it!
When people zig, we zag! The world is on Penn State here. We will go against the world! Washington keeps it close and look to see them win at the wire! MyBookie has this game at Penn State -2 and the total at 55. Spooky Express Pick: Washington Huskies +2
Note: This bowl game is being handicapped and broken down weeks in advance of the game being played. Please be sure to check back periodically to determine if any changes have been made and be sure to check the day of the game, to receive and over/under plays that we may provide.
***Update*** ***Update*** ***Update*** Playstation Fiesta Bowl
As much as we thought Washington plus the points would be the play, we have a game at almost a pickem’ from the beginning. As our power rankings have been showing all along, the PAC-12 was predicted to do poorly all bowl season and it has absolutely come to fruition! That being said, it is difficult for us to give out Washington today considering it should be a close game. As much as it pains us, we would recommend staying away from this game or if you are looking for action, no choice but to take Penn State (Moneyline) for as much as you want to risk!