No. 16 Spartans Ready to Face No. 18 Washington State in San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl
SAN DIEGO, Calif. – After a week enjoying sunny San Diego, the No. 16 Michigan State football team is ready to take on No. 18 Washington State on Thursday night in the 40th annual San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl.
MSU head coach Mark Dantonio and WSU head coach Mike Leach answered questions on Wednesday morning in the final press conference before the game.
“I would like to thank them (the Holiday Bowl committee) personally and the program for everything they have done for us,” said Dantonio in his opening statement. “I think it’s 1 degree back home today, so we’re glad to be out here and we’re motivated to play a good football game.
“I think every time you have an opportunity to play a football game, you’ve got to be ready and you’ve got to be fresh, and your mindset has to be correct, so we have to make sure that is in place. The opportunity to get 10, whether it is us or Washington State, puts us in a double digit-type win category, both football teams, and not too many football teams in the country can do that on a yearly basis. That’s our goal as we came out here was to play our best football and move it forward.”
The Spartans and Cougars then attended the National Funding Holiday Bowl Kickoff Luncheon before hundreds of fans in a program that featured the marching bands from both schools, comments from both head coaches, and a question-and-answer session with FOX sports analyst Joel Klatt.
For one of the questions, Klatt asked the Spartan captains who the best singer on the team was, and the answer was sophomore cornerback Josh Butler. Klatt then had Butler sing on the spot, and the Mesquite, Texas, native didn’t disappoint, singing the opening lines to “Lean On Me” to a rousing applause. The luncheon concluded with the Spartans singing the MSU Fight Song, “Victory for MSU,” in front of the entire crowd.
Following the luncheon and afternoon meetings, MSU held a brief walk through on a practice field outside of SDCCU Stadium, then took a team photo inside the stadium almost 24 hours from kickoff on Thursday night.
The Spartans were scheduled to watch a team movie in the hotel later at night after a team dinner. MSU will hold team meetings throughout the day on Thursday before arriving at SDCCU Stadium approximately two hours from kickoff. MSU (9-3) and WSU (9-3) will meet at 9:05 p.m. EST/6:05 p.m. PST; the game will be televised nationally on FS1.