Bob Stanton-US PRESSWIRE
For the first time ever, a ranked team will play in the Military Bowl, as No. 24 San Jose State takes on Bowling Green in what promises to be a tightly played defensive battle in Washington, D.C.
Two of the most impressive teams not in power conferences take the field in Washington, D.C. Thursday, as the No. 24 San Jose State Spartans face the Bowling Green Falcons in the Military Bowl presented by Northrop Grumman.
San Jose State went 10-2, and at the end of the year, neither loss looks particularly bad. It lost by a field goal in Week 1 to a Stanford squad that ended up winning the PAC-12, and later lost to Utah State, who won the WAC and earned a huge victory in their bowl game. It is led by David Fales, who completed 72.1 percent of his passes for 3,798 yards in his first season as a starter, and Minnesota transfer De'Leon Eskridge at running back. With only 21.4 points allowed per game, the Spartans had the No. 25 scoring defense in the country. They'll be without head coach Mike MacIntyre, who left the team for Colorado after the finish of the regular season.
It's only apt, name-wise, that the Military Bowl feature strong defenses, and the Falcons are even stingier than the Spartans: Bowling Green allowed only 15.8 points per game, the eighth-best figure in the country. They started off poorly with three losses in their first four games, but streaked to a strong finish, winning seven of their last eight, not a bad season in arguably the toughest season in MAC history.
Here's the info on Thursday afternoon's bowl game:
Game date and time
3 p.m. ET Thursday
RFK Stadium, Washington, D.C.
San Jose State opened as 7 1/2-point favorites
Last year’s game
Toledo, 42, Air Force, 41
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