We are getting closer and closer to finding out the participants in the 2012 Rose Bowl. For the first time ever, both the Pac-12 and Big Ten Conferences will hold a football championship game. The Michigan State Spartans clinched a spot in the Big Ten Championship Game last week, and the UCLA Bruins clinched a spot in the Pac-12 Championship Game on Friday. There are four teams vying for the final two spots in the conference title games on Saturday afternoon.
Pac-12: The Civil War, Oregon State Beavers at Oregon Ducks
At 12:30 p.m. PST on ABC (or ESPN2 in some markets), the Ducks will host the Beavers in Eugene in the 115th edition of what is known in the state of Oregon as The Civil War. Oregon is a four-touchdown favorite (per Odds Shark) in this battle and is looking for their fourth straight victory over Oregon State.
If the Ducks (9-2, 7-1) win against their rival, they win the Pac-12 North Division and earn the right to host the Bruins in the inaugural Pac-12 Championship Game on Friday, December 2. Should Oregon lose, the Stanford Cardinal (10-1, 8-1) are happy to step in as division champions, and they would host the Bruins next Friday in Palo Alto.
Big Ten: Penn State Nittany Lions at Wisconsin Badgers
Kicking off at the same time as The Civil War, the Nittany Lions (9-2, 6-1) and Badgers (9-2, 5-2) will battle in Madison, Wisconsin at 12:30 p.m. PST on ESPN. Wisconsin is a two-touchdown favorite over Penn State (per Odds Shark), with the winner crowned champion of the Big Ten Leaders Division.
The winner will battle Michigan State in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game on Saturday, December 3 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The Spartans, winners of the Big Ten Legends Division, defeated Wisconsin 37-31 on October 22 in East Lansing. Michigan State did not play Penn State this season.
Rose Bowl Rematches
There are nine possible Rose Bowl matchups with the six teams still alive. Of those matchups, there are six possible rematches of previous Rose Bowls:
- 1954: Michigan State 28, UCLA 20
- 1956: Michigan State 17, UCLA 14
- 1966: UCLA 14, Michigan State 12
- 1994: Wisconsin 21, UCLA 16
1995: Penn State 38, Oregon 20
- 1999: Wisconsin 38, UCLA 31
The 2012 Rose Bowl Game will be played on Monday, January 2, 2012 in Pasadena. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. PDT. The game will be televised by ESPN, with Brent Musberger, Kirk Hirbstreit, and Lisa Salters on the call. Stay tuned for more updates as the game approaches.