Tale of the Tape: TCU
As the Michigan State Football squad sealed their fate with a selection to the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl in Tempe, Ariz., a team that is eerily similar on the field will be waiting, the Texas Christian Horned Frogs.
TCU finished the year with a 7-5 mark, which could be considered a success in some ways as starting quarterback Casey Pachall was suspended indefinitely due to an October DWI. Head Coach Gary Patterson is known for producing a hard-hitting defense, which ranked 10th in run defense. Much like their counterpart, they had difficulty moving the ball, ranking 64th in total offense. For comparison, MSU ranked 89th in total offense.
On defense, TCU is led by Senior linebacker Kenny Cain, who has 74 tackles on the year. Forcing turnovers has been their specialty, as they compiled 21 interceptions on the year.
Something has to give, right?
Michigan State will attempt to pound the ball, as Le'veon Bell is coming off a memorable performance in which he racked up 266 yards rushing, the sixth-highest single-game total in school history. If the running game becomes stagnant, quarterback Andrew Maxwell will hope to bounce back from a subpar season that saw a meager 53% completion rate.
The Spartans last four losses all came within four points or fewer, so there is no reason to expect anything different. The battle against the Frogs can be a measuring stick for next season's expectations. A win would give the Spartans a third-straight winning record, and a second consecutive bowl victory after last year's three-overtime thriller versus Georgia.