Arizona State comes into Qualcomm Stadium as a 14-point favorite over Texas Tech in one of the biggest bowl season point spreads. The Sun Devils lay two touchdowns on the Holiday Bowl betting odds menu but they have struggled with the spread in December in recent years.
The Sun Devils are just 1-4 ATS in their last five bowls, but the favorite is 11-4 against-the-spread in the last 15 Holiday Bowls. The last five games have stayed UNDER the total (currently 70 in college football odds at Bovada) but the computer is projecting 80 (!) points in this matchup.
Meanwhile, Texas Tech has won six of its last seven bowl games straight-up, but is 1-6 against-the-spread, giving hope to Red Raider backers who may see the point spread climb higher before kickoff.
The Red Raiders closed out the regular season with five losses both straight-up and against-the-spread after winning their first seven games. They were blown out by double-digits in their final four outings, including a 41-16 hammering by Texas as six-point road underdogs in their season finale.
The total stayed UNDER the 68-point closing line in that game after going OVER in their previous seven contests.
The Texas Tech (Big 12, 7-5 SU, 5-7 ATS, 8-4 OU) offense still managed to put points on the board during this slide behind the second-ranked passing game in the nation, but the defense completely collapsed to end the season, ranking 90th in the nation in points allowed (31.2 per game). Quarterback Baker Mayfield is transferring to Oklahoma, so expect Davis Webb to get the nod instead.
Arizona State (Pac-12, 10-3 SU, 7-6 ATS, 9-4 OU) was just one win away from playing in this season's Rose Bowl, but a 38-14 loss to Stanford in the Pac-12 Championship put an end to those plans. The Sun Devils failed to cover as three-point home favorites against the Cardinal after going 5-2 against-the-spread in their previous seven games.
The total stayed UNDER the 52.5-point line and it has now stayed UNDER in three of their last five games.
This matchup could turn into an all-out aerial assault with Arizona State averaging 276.8 passing yards a game behind the arm of Taylor Kelly. He has thrown for 3,510 yards and 28 touchdowns while completing 62.9 percent of his 455 attempts.
Marion Grice led the ground game with 996 yards on 191 carries while averaging 5.2 yards an attempt. Overall, the Sun Devils were ranked 10th in the nation in scoring with an average of 41 points per game.
The last time these two met was back in 1999 when Arizona State rolled to a 31-13 victory as a 6-point home favorite.
Computer Prediction: 45-35 Arizona State (from Odds Shark college football picks computer)