- Bowl: Rose Bowl
- Matchup: Penn State vs USC
- Date: January 2, 2017 at 5:00 PM EST
- Preferred Sportsbook: Bookmaker
The 103rd Rose Bowl will be played on January 2, 2017 at 5:00 pm in Pasadena, California. This game will pit two of the hottest teams in the nation with the #5 Penn State Nittany Lions against the #9 USC Trojans. The Rose Bowl is considered one of the New Year's 6, but this year the Rose Bowl will not be played on New Year's day. Instead, they will play this game on Monday due to tradition and not wanting to change the Rose Bowl's rule of not having the parade on Sunday, which dates back to 1893! This is only the 16th time since 1902 that the game was not played on New Year's Day.
This will be the 10th time these 2 teams have played each other and the 3rd time at the Rose Bowl. The last time these two played each other was in 2009 in the Rose Bowl, where USC won 38-24. USC will be looking for their 10th win of the season, while Penn St is trying to secure their 12th win of the year, which would be their 1st since 19943
Will Penn St Have Motivation To Play???
Penn State finished the year 11-2 and was victorious against Wisconsin to win the BIG 10 Title but got shut out of the College Football Playoff to a team they upset, Ohio State. Many experts claim this will take all the motivation out of this game for the Nittany Lions but nonetheless, it will still be a great game! They won 9 straight to end the year and earned a shot at “The Grand Daddy of them All” in the Rose Bowl. Penn State is a team that has a reputation of starting out slow and playing from behind. Throughout the year, they were a second half team that were always there at the end of the game with a shot to win.
The Nittany Lions O-Line is giving QB Trace McSorley all the time in the world and it is paying off dividends. McSorley has thrown for 3360 yards, 25 touchdowns and only 5INT's. The Nittany Lions also have a very good running back in Saquon Barkley. Barkley was banged up towards the end of the year and the extra time off should help Barkley drastically.
USC Looking To Win 25th Time at Rose Bowl
USC is tough at The Rose Bowl. They have played in this game 33 other times, compiling a record of 24-9. If USC wants to win this year, it is a simple game plan….hold your opponent under 27 points. When the Trojans hold their teams under 27 points, they are 8-0. When they allow opponents to score over 27 points, they are 1-3!
When the Trojans have the ball, they will be led by QB Sam Darnold. Darnold has passed for 2497 yards and 24 touchdowns in only 9 games. In the backfield, the Trojans have a very talented RB in Ronald Jones II. Jones has rushed for 1027 yards on 157 attempts. This Trojan team is young and with a win here at The Rose Bowl, could very well boast them to a preseason College Football #1 ranking for the 2017 season.
Trojans Prevail Over Nittany Lions
This game is going to be a great game and a fun game to watch on TV. The Trojans of USC are a fast starting team who like to get a jump on their opponents. That isn't good for a Penn State team that is known for playing behind and having to make a comeback.
We think the Trojans will win this game but we are going to wait until closer to the game to give out an actual official play. The line is currently sitting at USC -6.5 and a total of 63.5 at Bookmaker. We would like to see this line come down a bit so we will wait and see which way it goes. Make sure you check back closer to game time to get the Spooky Express Official Rose Bowl Play! Most of the lines listed at time of writing are from original line weeks prior to date of game. Please adjust for any line changes and use your own judgement outside of our late updates posted.
Rose Bowl Picks at a Glance
All bowl picks are given and made by Spooky but the previews are written and put together by the Spooky Express team. Check back closer to game day for any possible changes. If you are a numbers person, please utilize the power rankings listed in our College Bowl Picks post.