The Michigan State Spartans and Stanford Cardinal are two of the more physical teams in college football, which makes the 2014 Rose Bowl one of the better match-ups during the postseason.

Let’s take a closer look at the NCAA football odds for this Big Ten/Pac-12 Conference showdown in Pasadena, CA, with the opening kickoff scheduled for 5:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Quite a season

Michigan State has won a school-record 12 games, including a 34-24 victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes as 5.5-point neutral-site underdogs in the Big Ten Championship on Dec. 7.

The Spartans will be making their fifth appearance in this prestigious affair, with the last trip coming in 1988.

It’s important to point out that the program has failed to cover the number in its last six games versus Pac-12 foes.

Domination

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It’s not easy beating the same opponent twice in a season, but Stanford did exactly that with a convincing 38-14 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils as three-point road underdogs in the Pac-12 Championship last time out.

The Cardinal are now a perfect 10-0 SU against ranked opponents with Kevin Hogan under center, while they’ve held 20 of their last 25 opponents to 20 or fewer points.

Defense

College football handicappers will be interested in grabbing the points with the Spartans in this contest, considering they possessed the top-ranked defense nationally for the entire 2013 campaign.

Michigan State has allowed an average of just 247.8 yards per game, including just 2.7 yards per carry on the ground.

Gaffney

The Cardinal have out-gained their last seven opponents on the ground, with running back Tyler Gaffney doing the heavy lifting, as he comes in with 1,618 rushing yards on the season.

Stanford has compiled a dominating 33-2 SU record in its last 35 games in the Golden State, while it has covered seven of its last nine bowl games.

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Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Cardinal for their college football pick, as they’ve gone 35-16-1 ATS in their last 52 games.

College Football Pick: Stanford Cardinal -4.5