After falling to Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game and missing out on a trip to the Rose Bowl, Michigan State's consolation prize is the Outback Bowl in Tampa. Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis confirmed on Sunday night that the Spartans will play in the Outback Bowl, according to Scott Westerman. MSU's opponent will be the Georgia Bulldogs, which lost to LSU in the SEC Championship Game.
The Outback Bowl will be Michigan State's fourth trip to Florida for a bowl game in the past five seasons. Last year, Michigan State was blown out by Alabama in the Capital One Bowl in Orlando. The Spartans also played in Orlando in 2007 for the Champs Sports Bowl and following the 2008 season for the Capital One Bowl. The latter game actually featured an MSU-Georgia matchup. The Bulldogs were led by current Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford and won by a score of 24-12.
Georgia has been to the Outback bowl four times in its history. It lost to Boston College in the first edition of the game and won it in 1997, 1999 and 2004. If the Bulldogs are victorious this year, they will have an 11-win season. Right now they are 10-3, which is the same record as Michigan State. A Spartans victory would give them their second straight 11-win season.
The 2012 Outback Bowl will get started at 1 p.m. (Eastern Time) on Monday, Jan. 2. ABC will have the broadcast of the game.