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Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl 2012: TCU vs. Michigan State

TCU of the Big 12 and Michigan State of the Big Ten will tangle on Dec. 29.


The Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl matchup is set as the TCU Horned Frogs (7-5) and Michigan State Spartans (6-6) will meet on Dec. 29 at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona. The bowl, formerly the Bowl and Copper Bowl, hosts a pair of teams that were once ranked and held high expectations, only to finally squeak into the bowl picture.

That certainly didn't mean their was a lack of drama, especially for Michigan State. As Michigan State blogger Chris Vannini of The Only Colors shared in the comments on TCU site Frogs O' War, the Spartans were just the "second team in FBS history to play in seven straight games decided by four points or less!"

After two-straight 11-win seasons, Michigan State has qualified for a sixth-straight bowl game despite going 3-5 in the Big Ten. By the numbers, the Spartans are a one-sided team. Their defense allows just 273 yards per game, fourth-best in the nation, while the offense ranks 89th nationally at 370 yards per contest.

TCU's historically-good defense is again strong, ranking 18th in total yards per game. The Horned Frogs held six different opponents to season-low point totals, tallying a 4-5 record in the Big 12 despite losing starting quarterback Casey Pachall to suspension and starting running back Waymon James to injury.

The meeting is the second all-time between the two schools. In 1953, Michigan State scored a 26-19 home win over the Frogs.

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Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.