Boise State vs. Arizona State: Betting the Spread for the MAACO Bowl

Johnathan CaceCorrespondent IDecember 19, 2011

BOISE, ID - DECEMBER 03: Kellen Moore #11 of the Boise State Broncos passes against the New Mexico Lobos at Bronco Stadium on December 3, 2011 in Boise, Idaho.  (Photo by Otto Kitsinger III/Getty Images)
Otto Kitsinger III/Getty Images

Boise State was passed over by the BCS in favor of Virginia Tech and Michigan, so it was selected to play Arizona State in Las Vegas for the MAACO Bowl. Vegas has put the Broncos as a 13.5 point favorite because they are ranked No. 7 in the final BCS Standings and are 11-1 compared to the Sun Devils’ 6-6 record.

They had high expectations coming into the season but injuries ultimately ended the team’s hope of competing in the Pac-12. They’ve been in free fall since beating Utah, losing five of their last six games and have only won one road game all year. ASU was able to beat USC at home in September but the teams could not be in more different places now.

The two names to know for the Sun Devils are quarterback Brock Osweiler and linebacker Vontaze Burfict. Osweiler ranks 11th in the country in total offense per game and is a threat to run the football on any play with his large 6’8” frame.

Burfict is one of the nation’s toughest linebackers but his play has seriously dropped off this season. If he gets going, watch out for Arizona State’s defense which has allowed 29 or more points in its last five losses.

When you talk about Boise State, you have to start with quarterback Kellen Moore who has been a staple of the team since 2008. This will be his final game as a collegiate player and that alone should be enough to get you to watch this game.

But he isn’t the only guy to look out for. Running back Doug Martin had lofty expectations that he hasn’t completely met but he is still one of the most dangerous and underrated backs in the country. He is averaging 95 yards per game and has over 110 in the last five games where he’s had significant playing time.

If the Broncos play even close to what they are capable of in Kellen Moore’s final collegiate game, they’ll dominate a depleted Arizona State team. They may start off sluggish but their defense will eventually settle down to allow the offense to score enough points to cover.