Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Atlanta)
Time: Dec. 30, 7 p.m. EST on ESPN
Teams: No. 10 Michigan State (10–2) versus No. 12 Pittsburgh (11–2)
Line: Michigan State -0.5
Well, this game had some buzz with the potential matchup of Heisman finalist Kenny Pickett and Heisman snub Kenneth Walker III, but both of them have opted out to prepare for the NFL Draft. So let's turn to the other factor of this game - revenge.
Pat Narduzzi is the X-factor in this game. No matter who is under center, Narduzzi is going to light a fire under the QB and give him the opportunity to expose a very shaky Michigan State pass defense. Coach Narduzzi might not recognize how bad his old team's defense is, but he's likely chomping at the bit to expose them and walk away with some hardware.
It's hard to pick against Pitt given the extra motivation for Narduzzi and the sheer talent on the offensive side of the ball for Pitt. They have opportunity to torch the MSU defense, so we'll roll with Pitt in this one.
The Score: Pittsburgh wins 35-27
(We do most of my guessing based on a combination of The Smell Test and gut. If you’re looking for stat-based expertise to help you pick your games, check out our friends over at TeamRankings.com. They have a fantastic strategy guide and expert picks, too.)
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