Wake Forest set to play Michigan State in Pinstripe Bowl

Sports

Pinstripe Bowl: Michigan State (6-6) vs. Wake Forest (8-4), Friday at 3:30 p.m. EST (ESPN).

Line: Michigan State by 3½.

Series Record: First meeting.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Wake Forest is one of nine schools to win a bowl game in each of the past three seasons and needs one more win to become just the third team in school history to finish with nine or more victories. It could be a close one. Each of the last two bowl victories has been by three points and last season’s victory over Temple was by eight points. Michigan State’s offense has been wildly inconsistent this season and failed to score more than 10 points in a game five times. The Spartans still did just enough to make a bowl game for the 12th time in 13 seasons.

KEY MATCHUP

Wake’s QB vs. Michigan State’s pass defense. Jamie Newman has been hit with injuries this season, missing one game and leaving early in two others. He averages 244.8 yards and has thrown for 23 TDs with 10 interceptions, but it’s possible that even if healthy enough to start, he doesn’t play much. Wake Forest ranks 12th in the nation in total offense. The Spartans allowed 30-plus points four times this season.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Michigan State: DT Raequan Williams. He’s set to start his 42nd consecutive game, which would set a record for the most consecutive starts under head coach Mark Dantonio. He was a first-team, All-Big Ten selection the past two seasons and has emerged as one of the program’s top NFL prospects.

Wake Forest: DE Boogie Basham. He has 10 sacks, three forced fumbles and became the first Wake Forest defensive end since 2002 (Calvin Pace) to be named a first-team, All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection.

FACTS & FIGURES

Michigan State has already played bowl games in baseball stadiums in New York, adding Yankee Stadium to the list that includes the Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field. … Wake Forest placed a school- record 14 players on the 2019 All-ACC team. … Fifth-year senior Brian Lewerke is slated to start his 38th and final game at quarterback for the Spartans. … Wake Forest is the fifth-least penalized team in the nation (50 times in 12 games).

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