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Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Preview
by Matt Fargo - 12/05/2012
Saturday, December 15th
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl - Bronco Stadium Boise, ID 4:30 PM ET
Toledo Rockets vs. Utah St. Aggies (-10/57.5)
How Toledo got here
Toledo was one of three MAC teams that were ranked at some point this season. After an eight-game winning streak, the Rockets moved into the top 25 but it was short-lived as they lost to Ball St. at home followed by another loss at Northern Illinois. Toledo closed the season with an unimpressive win over 1-11 Akron so it isn't exactly entering the postseason on a high note. The Rockets were picked as preseason MAC favorites so going from a possible championship to playing a bowl game in Idaho may be a bit of a downer. The Rockets possess an offense that is potent but a defense that is suspect.
How Utah St. got here
Utah St. came into the season with high expectations and it did not disappoint as it went 10-2 and that could have been even better. The Aggies lost at Wisconsin by two points and at BYU by three points while every victory was by at least a touchdown. They come in riding a six-game winning streak so they have plenty of momentum and with the short turnaround from the final game to the bowl game, that momentum should not be lost. Utah St. has a rather large intangible on its side as it played in this bowl last year and lost to Ohio in the final seconds so it will be out to make up for that disappointment.
Utah St. is ranked in the top three in the WAC in all 17 major statistical categories kept by the NCAA while Toledo is ranked third or higher in only one, total offense.
The Aggies are one of the hotter teams in the country not many people may know about as they have won 15 of their last 18 games going back to last season. They do it with both offense and defense as Utah St. has scored 38 or more points in six straight games while scoring 31 or more points in 9 of 12 on the season. Toledo is 105th in total defense and should show little resistance. The Rockets get it done with offense as they are 28th overall and 99th in scoring but the numbers have slipped recently. Toledo will not find it easy against a Utah St. defense ranked 15th overall and eighth in scoring.
Toledo is 6-0 ATS in its last six games as an underdog of 3.5 to 10 points.
Utah St. is 6-0 ATS after a win by 21 or more points this season.