College Football Week 8 Viewing and Betting Guide
Virginia Tech at Clemson (-8)
The Hokies have been a mess this season. When a big comeback against Duke is news, you know you’re doing something wrong. They were down 20-0 at one point to the Blue Devils. Virginia Tech is 80th in rushing and 55th in points for. They are not spectacular on offense and their defense has been a disappointment this season.
The game is also at Clemson, a team hasn’t had many issues with putting points on the board. Sammy Watkins has done a disappearing act after his breakout performance last season. The Tiger’s only loss was to Florida State when they were a top 5 team. The spread is fairly high for the ACC but since Clemson can score points and is at home I’ll take Clemson.
LSU (-3) at Texas A&M
We’ve already seen Texas A&M go against an established college football power and they lost 20-17 against a really good Florida team. Since then the only snare they’ve hit was a 3-point win over Ole Miss.
Johnny “Football” Manziel continues to be one of my favorite players in college football right now with his unpredictability and sheer stupid performances against the like of Louisiana Tech. There in lies the problem though, many of Manziel’s stats have been against SMU, SC State, Arkansas, Ole Miss, and Louisiana Tech.
Now the big boy Tigers come to College Station for their first conference game against Texas A&M. LSU seems lost on offense with Zach Mettenberger at quarterback, but the defense and special teams is what makes the Tigers so great.
LSU turned a corner last week against South Carolina when they scored 23 points and I think the Tiger defense is too good and too fast to let Johnny Football run wild.
Stanford at Cal (+3.5)
The Cardinal haven’t scored an offensive touchdown on the road. They’ve managed to average only 13 points a game, while averaging 36.25 points a game at home.
They travel to Cal for the Big Game now moved to October. This game is hard to figure out and put together because Cal is by no means good. They are 3-4 and have looked abysmal at times.
With the poor performances on the road for Stanford, and coming off a deflating loss to Notre Dame, I’m picking Cal to sneak in a cover. Yeah, the window to hit the cover without winning is small, but it is possible. Cal is on a two-game win streak and is in a must-win scenario if they want to go bowling.
BYU at Notre Dame (-14)
The Fighting Irish of Notre Dame host the BYU Cougars a week after beating ranked Stanford to add to their incredibly impressive resume. If the Fighting Irish go undefeated it is going to be a crazy argument about whether they or Oregon should play in the national title game.
BYU is one week removed from losing to Oregon State by 18 at home. BYU hadn’t really played many good teams and Oregon State exposed them. They are a one-dimensional team that will make mistakes.
Notre Dame doesn’t make many mistakes, and they have one of the best run defenses in the country. This is going to be an SEC-type performance by Notre Dame on defense and this will be a blowout.
Michigan State at Michigan (-9)
Is anybody else aware that Michigan State has won this game four years in a row? The Spartans are on a four game win streak that they have quietly put together. It is the last chance for the Michigan seniors to beat Michigan State.
Since almost beating Ohio State, the Spartans had a narrow escape at Indiana and lost to Iowa in double overtime. The loss to Iowa is the most shocking. Being behind Indiana for the majority of a game is also worrisome, but not as impactful as a loss.
The brightest spot of the Michigan State squad is Le’Veon Bell, who I am already hoping gets drafted to a good NFL team so I can draft him way too high in fantasy football.
In this game, I believe in Denard Robinson. With the game being at home I like shoelace will show up in a big way. This is really a gut feel call, but I think the Wolverines are peaking at the right time and could pull out this win for the first time in five years.
South Carolina at Florida (-3)
The Gamecocks will be without Marcus Lattimore, or at the most, they’ll have a Lattimore that is well below 100%. When the running game sets up the passing attack, the loss of one of the nation’s best running backs is going to hurt.
Florida’s running game relies on its strength in numbers. Twelve people have had carries for the Gators and now Jeff Driskell has announced himself as a great runner for the Gators.
The Gators get this game at home in what will decide the driver’s seat for the SEC East. If Florida wins then their game against Georgia will determine who goes to the SEC championship game.
Alabama (-20.5) at Tennessee
Alabama minus anything as the Solid Verballers say. I think Tennessee could challenge one of the greatest football teams put together by Nick Saban. They have Tyler Bray at quarterback and a few other playmakers on offense that can score points. However, Alabama is just so solid everywhere and doesn’t have many weaknesses, anywhere on the two-deep.
It would totally make sense though for Derek Dooley to bring the pain this game and score an upset. Because it is that type of season right now. It will take a few turnovers and some uncharacteristic plays though for Tennessee to cover.
Kansas State at West Virginia (-3)
Which West Virginia do you believe? The one that got blown out at Texas Tech or the one we’ve seen all season? I’m going with the one we’ve seen more often. I like the Mountaineers to bounce back after getting blown out.
Kansas State will challenge the Mountaineers though in ways they haven’t been tested yet. Collin Klein remains a Heisman contender and the Wildcats’ physical running style is an interesting kryptonite for the West Virginia defense.
This is one of the games that will be on the top two screens at one point. It is drama. If you’re an Oregon fan you have to appreciate Dana Holgersen’s offense and also tune in to see what happens to the Big-12’s best undefeated.
Florida State (-21) at Miami
Take no prisoners Florida State! Jimbo Fisher will not take it easy on Miami. When given the opportunity, he has kept his foot on the gas.
It’s not like Miami is amazing. They have wins over bad teams and haven’t beaten a good team yet. In both games against top 25 opponents the Hurricanes played horrifically badly.
There isn’t a home field advantage anyways. Some of the photos of the stadium before kickoff are just depressing.
Baylor (+9) at Texas
It still baffles me that a team can score 63 points and not win the game. They lost by 7 to West Virginia a few weeks ago and now they travel to Texas. Texas is fresh off a humiliating loss to Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl.
Texas also barely lost to West Virginia, 48-45, two weeks ago. So Texas has shown against inferior defenses they can put up points. They’ve also shown they can’t stop really good offenses. David Ash is going to play with a bum, non-throwing, wrist, so we can expect to not see a noticeable difference in effectiveness after watching his game against Oklahoma.
There are two main reasons why I’m picking Baylor. First, the hangover from Oklahoma could have been strong enough to last a whole week. Second, in a shootout, I’m going to take the team with the better offense and the points.
Utah at Oregon State (-10)
This is me planting the flag on Oregon State. I’ll probably pick them to cover the rest of the year. They really showed up against BYU. With a backup quarterback, who performed great, the rest of the offense and defense showed up in a big way en route to an 18-point win in Provo, Utah.
Utah on the other hand is on a three game losing streak. Their two wins are over Northern Colorado and BYU. Their losses are to Utah State, Arizona State, USC, and UCLA.
Mike Riley has still got it, at least every third year, and the magic continues in Corvallis. I would pick Oregon State up to -14 if only there were an In-N-Out in Corvallis.