Smarty, meet Sparty.

The race for this year's 100th Rose Bowl game was not nearly as exciting as the race for tickets to this year's 100th Rose Bowl Game.

Stanford, the defending Rose Bowl champions, may have even been outsmarted by ticket-hungry fans from East Lansing. Michigan State, after all, is making its first Rose Bowl appearance in 26 years.

It was reported last week that some Michigan State fans took advantage of a Stanford plan that offered tickets to anyone who put a $100 deposit to become a 2014 Stanford season ticket holder.

With prices reaching $1,000 per ticket, some Michigan State fans put down the deposit in order to purchase tickets at the face value of $185. 

"I heard through a friend that they were selling tickets on the Stanford site," Danny Daoud, a 2006 Michigan State grad, told ESPN. "All you had to do was put down a $100 deposit for 2014 season tickets and you got access to four tickets. So I went to the site, created an account, called them and sat on hold for an hour and 55 minutes and bought my tickets."

That's pretty smart, right? Because of demand, Stanford quickly upped the deposit fee to $200 and claims 95% of its priority customers got tickets through the offer.

This is one hot ticket, though, as Michigan State received more than 31,000 ticket request for its Rose Bowl allotment of 24,000.

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany even stepped in to find 200 more tickets to provide to Michigan State donors at the "Honorary Coaches" level — those who donate between $2,000 and $4,900 annually.

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