College Football Predictions Week 8: 25 Hunches for This Week's Games
My favorite time of the week has come once more, and I know you all were looking forward to it as well.
I continue to think that each college football weekend that comes up can't be better than the last, but each Saturday that comes around always brings a new surprise.
Can this Saturday be the best one yet? Will there be more upsets around the country that will shake up the BCS polls?
There are a few teams to keep your eye on this weekend. The Oregon Ducks might have a little chip on their shoulder after being left out of the top spot in the first BCS poll released last Sunday evening.
The other two teams that might be worth watching are the Texas Longhorns and the Wisconsin Badgers. Each had a big upset last weekend and while the Longhorns have a seemingly easy weekend, Wisconsin has a tough road match on Saturday.
There are so many other teams to watch this weekend and instead of naming them all in our introduction, we'll let you have a little fun with them as we take a look at the 25 hunches for Week 8 of the college football season.
No. 25: Can Navy Send Notre Dame Out To Sea?
The Navy Midshipmen will be at home, and they'll be taking on the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame.
As much as I want to pick Notre Dame in this one, I think Navy is going to be ready for this one, and I think they'll pull off a big win.
No. 24: Penn State Needs To Save What Could Be a Mediocre Season
This was supposed to be a good season, but after their loss to Alabama, Penn State hasn't been able to recover.
They need to salvage what could become a mediocre season, and it needs to start on Saturday with a win over the lowly Golden Gophers of Minnesota.
No. 23: BYU and Wyoming Have The Same Record?
BYU announced that they were going independent and leaving the Mountain West Conference. They probably wanted to prove why the conference would miss them being around.
However, that hasn't exactly happened as the Cougars sit with the exact same record as the...Wyoming Cowboys?
You heard it right. The Cougars and Cowboys currently sit at 2-5 on the year, and one of them will get their third win of the season as they face each other on Saturday.
No. 22: SMU, Houston Battle Doesn't Have The Same Feel
Without quarterback Case Keenum being in the game for the Houston Cougars, their battle against SMU this Saturday just won't have the same feeling to it.
With SMU coming off a loss to Navy, this win would go a long way to giving them a little momentum for the rest of the season.
No. 21: Bryant Moniz Puts Up Huge Numbers In Logan, Utah
Hawaii has taken down Fresno State, they've dispatched of Nevada, now they head to Logan, Utah to take on Utah State—the team that was originally given the invite to join the Mountain West but eventually declined.
The Aggies have one goal in mind—stop Warriors' quarterback Bryant Moniz who, if you're not careful, can easily go for 400 through the air.
He'll do just that on Saturday and then some.
No. 20: Baylor Has a Chance To Flex Their Proverbial Muscle
The Baylor Bears are having one of their best seasons in quite some time and they can keep that rolling if they can pick up a win against the Kansas State Wildcats on Saturday.
This is a team that is better than most thought they were, and a win over Kansas State would go a long way for momentum as they head out on the road for the next two weeks against Texas and Oklahoma State.
No. 19: Stanford Finishes Hot After Slow Start
Stanford will be at home against the lowly Washington State Cougars, a team that everyone has been taking turns beating on.
The Cardinal will get off to a slow start but will eventually turn on the jets and leave the Cougars in the dust.
No. 18: Miami Stumbles Against North Carolina
The North Carolina Tar Heels have had some hard luck this season and have had a hard time just dressing players for each game, thanks to several NCAA violations.
However, this weekend against Miami will be on that they'll remember, especially after they pick up the upset win.
No. 17: Missouri Unbeaten No More
A rematch of the 2009 Big 12 Championship game will pit the unbeaten Missouri Tigers against college football's best team, the Oklahoma Sooners. Well, at least according to the computers.
Missouri would already have their first loss of the season had the San Diego State Aztecs been able to tackle in the Tigers' winning score.
However, Missouri won't be so lucky as to hang around in this one. Sooners roll easily.
No. 16: A Blowout Party in Austin
One week after the Texas Longhorns shocked the then fifth ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers, in Lincoln no less, Texas will return home to Austin for a blowout party.
They will welcome in the Iowa State Cyclones who are coming off a 52-0 beat down at the hands of the Sooners. The week before, they were handed a 68-27 thrashing by Utah.
So the Cyclones are no stranger to blowouts.
No. 15: How Does Ohio State Respond After Last Week?
After losing to Wisconsin on the road last weekend, how will Ohio State respond this Saturday as they return home to face Purdue?
Back in front of your home crowd is usually a recipe for success, and since their opponent is the Boilermakers, this should be a win for the Buckeyes.
No. 14: No Letdown For South Carolina
South Carolina had the two biggest ups and downs of any college football team in the country over the last two weeks.
They upset Alabama at home only to go on the road and lose to Kentucky.
There won't be a letdown this time as they hit the road again to take on Vanderbilt. The "Ole Ball Coach" should have them ready for this one.
No. 13: Nothing Rocky About Alabama's Win In Knoxville
The Alabama Crimson Tide got back on the wagon last week after falling off against South Carolina two weeks ago.
This week, it'll be a trip to Rocky Top to take on Tennessee.
The Vols seem like they're settling into the SEC cellar nicely and will invite the Crimson Tide in for a blowout, which they'll gladly accept.
No. 12: Is Michigan State In For a Letdown?
Most college football fans are surprised at what Michigan State has been able to do this season.
They've knocked off in-state rival Michigan, on the road, and they've knocked off a Wisconsin team that took down top ranked Ohio State.
I'd say that's a pretty good season by most team's standards.
However, with a road game coming up against Northwestern, could there be a chance of a letdown or are the Spartans too good to allow that to happen?
No. 11: Will Ryan Mallett Play Against Ole Miss?
Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett left their game against Auburn last Saturday with a concussion, and his status right now for their game against Ole Miss is still uncertain.
If Mallett can't go, do they have enough in Tyler Wilson to get past the Rebels or should they be concerned?
No. 10: Can Wisconsin Have Back-to-Back Big Weeks?
After the ultimate high of knocking off the top ranked team in the country, Ohio State, the Wisconsin Badgers will have another challenge on their hands as they take on Iowa.
The Hawkeyes have a defense that shouldn't be taken lightly and could put an end to Wisconsin's momentum.
Who comes out on top in this one?
No. 9: Big 12 Battle In Stillwater
What should be an epic battle in the Big 12 in Stillwater, Oklahoma, the Oklahoma State Cowboys and the Nebraska Cornhuskers will do battle on Saturday.
Oklahoma State can't underestimate Nebraska especially after getting embarrassed by Texas the week before.
This should be a good one.
No. 8: Oregon Will Have a Chip on Their Shoulder
The Oregon Ducks, not to mention their fans, are not happy about being left at the second spot in the first BCS poll that was released on Sunday.
They are going to want to take that out on somebody on Thursday night, and that somebody just happens to be the flailing UCLA Bruins.
The Ducks have arguably the best offense in college football and will do a little showing off in this one.
No. 7: Cam Newton Will Show Why He's a Heisman Favorite
Cam Newton put on an incredible performance last weekend against Arkansas, and he'll have a chance to do that again on Saturday when the two Tigers go head-to-head.
LSU and Auburn, two unbeaten teams, will do battle in a game that I don't believe LSU has a chance in. The Tigers have been handed at least two wins while Auburn has earned every one of those.
Watch for Newton to put up a big performance in this game.
No. 6: Guest Picker Of The Week
My guest this week is not only a current member of the San Diego Padres' organization, but he's a current minor league player for the team.
I'm referring to second baseman Matt Antonelli.
Though he's had some hard luck injuries, he's hoping that this latest surgery on his hand is exactly what will get him back on the field and allow him to make another run at the big leagues.
Though our guest pickers have had two straight tough weeks, I know Matt is the guy to get us out of this slump.
Without further ado, here are Matt's five picks of the week.
No. 5: Oklahoma at Missouri
Matt Antonelli: Although the No. 1 ranking hasn't been kind to just about every No. 1 team this year, I'm still going with the Sooners over Mizzou.
I like the spread attack that Oklahoma uses, and it doesn't really seem to matter who is under center, they can put up a ton of points. Add DeMarco Murray to the equation and I don't see the Tigers stopping them. It will be close but give Oklahoma the edge.
Todd: Couldn't agree with Matt more on this one. Missouri should have one loss already to San Diego State but got the win thanks to poor tackling by the Aztecs. Oklahoma should win this one.
No. 4: LSU at Auburn
Matt Antonelli: In a big time SEC battle, I'm going Auburn over LSU. I'm pretty much going with the home team in this one. If it were being played in Baton Rouge, I'd be going with LSU, but I like Cam Newton and the home crowd to help propel them to a close victory.
Todd: All you have to say is Cam Newton, and I'll pick Auburn. This kid has proved that he's the best college football player in the land. Should be a tight game, but I like Auburn in this one.
No. 3: Wisconsin at Iowa
Matt Antonelli: In another game that I would take the home team, I'll go with Iowa over Wisconsin. After such a huge emotional win over No. Ohio State, I think it will be very tough to now go on the road against a good Iowa team and win back to back big games. Give Iowa the check mark.
Todd: Gutsy pick. As much as I like Iowa, especially at home, I'm going to go with Wisconsin to keep their momentum from last week. I know the Badgers were at home last Saturday, but I think they're good enough to get the win here.
No. 2: North Carolina at Miami
Matt Antonelli: Looking at the ACC (my favorite collegiate conference), I'm going with the Hurricanes over the Tar Heels. I might have to suit up for UNC to help them field enough players, and because I'm currently injured and can't bring a whole lot to the table, I'm going with The U.
Todd: I hate to be go the opposite in two straight picks, but I think North Carolina has enough in them to upset the Hurricanes. Sure Miami is at home, but I like the underdog in this one.
No. 1: Nebraska at Oklahoma State
Matt Antonelli: I'm stuck on who to go with on this game. I think Nebraska may bounce back after a tough loss at home to Texas, but I just can't seem to pull the trigger on them.
I think I'm going to stick with my theme of home teams and go with the Cowboys over the Cornhuskers. Although the Nebraska pass defense can be stifling, I still have faith in Oklahoma State's offense at home to put up enough points to pull out a close victory.
Todd: Gotta go with Matt on this one. With Oklahoma State playing at home, they're going to have the advantage. However, don't count out Nebraska from wanting to prove that last week was a fluke. Either way, I see the Cowboys coming away winners in this one.