Week 7 in the College Football regular season produced in a major way, with an unbeaten #3 Georgia losing and 6 other teams getting beat inside the Top-25.
Week 8 features several important matchups on the docket, including two in the Pac-12 and one in the Big Ten, along with a variety of games flying under the radar.
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#7 Penn State vs. #16 Michigan: An unbeaten and seemingly peaking Nittany Lions squad hosts Michigan in a crucial Big Ten East marquee matchup. Both teams defeated Iowa of late, playing out pretty much the same in two low-scoring games. Wolverines QB Shea Patterson is surprisingly overshadowed by Penn State’s first-year starter quarterback Sean Clifford. Although Michigan had a better defense coming into this season on paper, the gap isn’t as wide as once thought. Penn State’s defensive line is the most athletic in head coach James Franklin’s regime. Home field advantage will be a factor as will the Nittany Lion’s ability to contain Michigan’s rushing attack. Turnovers will likely be a deciding factor per usual in this type of contest. The outcome will still be in the balance in the fourth quarter so expect UM to lose by less than the 9-points Las Vegas is giving to Penn State.
The Pick: Penn State 23 Michigan 20
#13 Utah vs. #17 Arizona State: 2nd-year head coach Herm Edwards has done a great job in Tempe, Arizona in a short amount of time. The Utes were cruising right along looking strong until USC unexpectedly handed Utah their first loss. The QB matchup is very interesting between Utah’s sturdy senior Tyler Huntley and ASU’s ever-improving true freshman Jayden Daniels. Both signal-callers have expanded their games to become true dual threats.
Utah will need to dominate the time of possession which will spark the home crowd to get behind the defense. The Sun Devils are a very good club and this College Ball junkie is scratching my head as to why ASU is a 13.5-point road dog.
The Pick: Utah 23 Arizona State 16
Under The Radar
#12 Oregon vs. #25 Washington: What a great quarterback dual with the soon-to-be-NFL-drafted Justin Hubert and young gun Jacob Easton. The Ducks offense gets all the attention but don’t sleep on the defensive side of the ball. Washington is built to last on defense but their offensive inconsistency has held them back as a program. Cal was able to force Washington turnovers and Stanford contained the Huskies ground game. In Oregon’s one loss to Auburn, the Ducks let two separate 2 score leads, slip away. Weather could be a factor at Husky Stadium, as it sits it will be in the 50’s and rain is very possible.
The Pick: Oregon 27 Washington 23
Saturday Upset Special
Kansas State will protect their home field advantage with a minor upset to visiting TCU.
(Honorable Mention: Hawaii shows up as a home dog to beat slight favorite Air Force.)
#18 Baylor vs. Oklahoma State: An undefeated Baylor survived double-overtime with Texas Tech last week but lost their star linebacker in the process. Oklahoma State came up short versus Texas and Texas Tech but that’s didn’t stop Vegas from making them a slight favorite at home.
#19 SMU vs. Temple: Temple can make it 3 straight victories over a ranked team this Saturday. However, SMU is off to its best start in over 30 years, perfect ingredients for a barnburner.
Against The Spread
#17 ASU will probably lose on the road to #13 Utah but not by 13.5-points.
(Honorable Mention: #3 Clemson will definitely defeat Louisville but look for the Cardinals to sneak under the 24.5-points.)
Take it to the window #14 Boise State will cover as a 6.5-point road favorite to BYU.
Quick Hits Recap
-South Carolina needed a field goal to shock #3 Georgia in double overtime, the Gamecocks first victory of an opponent ranked in the Top-10 in 5 years.
-The University of Clemson kept on rolling in a easy win versus Florida State, extending the longest winning streak in the FBS to 21 in a row.
-Alabama made it 5 consecutive games scoring at least 45 points with a 47-28 over Texas A&M.
-The Wisconsin Badgers now have 4 shutouts after a 38-0 beatdown of Michigan State.
-The Minnesota Gophers earned their first 6-0 start to a season since 2003. Also, the Gophers 8 victories in a row, marks the longest streak dating all the way back to 1948-49.
-Temple defeated previously ranked Memphis making it the first time ever to get back to back wins over AP-Top 25 in school history.
Written by Chris Carlson Host of The College Ball Show Podcast available at blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio & TheGruelingTruth.Com
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