By Chris Carlson
Not even a Hollywood screenwriter could come up with the stories that played in a wild Week 7. A total of 7 Top-25 teams got beat by unranked foes. Week 8 is very important for the Big Ten, USC/Notre Dame, & a few non-power 5 teams looking to impress enough to qualify for a New Year’s Eve bowl game. Take this quick trip thru the marquee matchups & under radar games that should produce plenty of stuff to talk about.
#2 Penn State vs. #19 Michigan: This important Big Ten matchup marks a string of three consecutive ranked opponents for the Nittany Lions. At the beginning of the season each team had a clear unit weakness. Penn State has seemingly improved on defense whereas the Wolverines have regressed on offense. Red zone efficiency is another glaring issue for Michigan’s dreadful offense. I lean Penn State but think the Wolverines could keep it close enough to not lose by the 9.5-points Las Vegas has them as an underdog.
The Pick: Penn State 19 Michigan 16
Under The Radar
#11 USC vs. #13 Norte Dame: The winner of this mid-season, non-conference test places them all the way back in the picture nationally. Irish QB Brandon Wimbush has been cleared to play which brings another element to Norte Dame’s already potent run game and overall offense. The Trojans rallied to beat Utah Week 7 in the fourth quarter. Can USC limit their turnovers, for all the glory QB Sam Darnold receives he’s thrown 9 interceptions. Finally USC puts together a complete game on both sides of the ball.
The Pick: USC 30 Norte Dame 26
Saturday Upset Special
Louisville as a 6-point underdog pulls off the upset in Tallahassee over Florida State.
Hardcore Barn Burner
#20 Central Florida vs. Navy: Navy looks to bounce back after suffering their first loss of the season so expect the Midshipman to match the intensity of Central Florida.
(Honorable Mention: #25 Memphis who took Navy’s ‘0’ and now a newly Top 25 ranked is still a slight underdog to Houston at home.)
Against The Spread
Syracuse shocked returning champs Clemson and will lose by less than 15-points to #8 Miami.
Quick Hits Recap
-Arizona State’s upset over previously undefeated Washington was the Sun Devils first victory over a Top-5 team in 21 years.
-Louisville QB Lamar Jackson became the first underclassman to pass for 7000 yards and rush for 3000 yards in the history of FBS.
-Washington State senior QB Luke Falk threw 5 interceptions last week in a dreary 37-3 stomping by California.
-5 unbeaten teams were on the short end of the stick losing in an unthinkable Week 7.
-Quarterback Khalil Tate backed up a phenomenal game last week with 230 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns in a victory over UCLA 47-30.
Written by Chris Carlson Host/Producer of The College Ball Show Podcast Available on Apple Podcast (ITunes), Player.FM, Stitcher, Tunein, www.blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio & More! Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio.