USC to Play Michigan in Outback Bowl

Outback-Bowl-Football-9

MI is heading back to Florida.

Fans will likely remember that SC previously beat MI in the Outback Bowl in 2013.

USC is 7-4-1 against the spread in 2017. "These are two exciting teams and a quality match-up that fans are really going to enjoy watching on New Year's Day".

"Michigan proudly accepts the invitation to have our student-athletes, coaches and fans experience the Outback Bowl this holiday season", MI athletic director Warde Manuel said in a news release.

"We are honored to represent our University and the Big Ten Conference in the tradition-laden Outback Bowl in Tampa", Harbaugh said in a statement. MI lost to four teams that were 9-3 or better, including three in New Year's Six bowls (Penn State, Ohio State, Wisconsin). With this wrinkle, the Citrus Bowl could not select a Big Ten team. MI finished the regular season with an 8-4 record, including a 5-4 mark in the Big Ten.

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Part of Michigan's appeal is strong ticket sales and television ratings - the Michigan-Ohio State game on November 25 drew Fox's best metered market rating ever for a regular-season college game with a 6.7 rating.

MI (8-4, 5-4 Big Ten) was in limbo over a bowl destination up until Sunday afternoon, when it was revealed Alabama edged Ohio State for the fourth and final spot in the College Football Playoff.

Michigan State will head to Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego on December 28 to face off against Washington State, which finished with a 9-3 record in the PAC-12.

The teams have a common opponent, Florida, which they both beat. The Gamecocks were 6-6 in the 2016 regular season before losing to USF in the Birmingham Bowl. The Holiday Bowl had popped up as a potential destination for MI, too.

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