By Chris Carlson
Week 7 is yet another reason the College Football regular season takes a back seat to no sport. What seemed to be a ho-hum schedule produced carnage inside the Associated Press Top-10 including two unbeaten’s in Georgia/West Virginia and total 4 overall. Not to mention many razor-close finishes involving unranked teams versus the Top-25.
Week 8 features key matchups in the Pac-12, SEC, and is headlined by a battle of undefeated ACC Atlantic foes. Ranked road teams beware this week because it’s eerily similar to Week 7 so expect the unexpected. The first Committee Playoff Rankings is a little over a week away meaning it’s time to start separating potential National Semifinalist in my Top-4.
#2 Clemson vs. #16 North Carolina State: This ACC matchup will likely decide who wins the Atlantic division and a trip to the league championship game. Clemson RB Travis Eitenne already has 761 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns. North Carolina State’s game with West Virginia early this year was cancelled making it tough to tell just how good the Wolfpack really is. The Tigers are at home and will be fully focused having already caught slipping against Syracuse. Clemson has the better coach & better players, look for the Tigers defensive line to dominate.
The Pick: Clemson 31 NC State 17
Under The Radar
#5 LSU vs. #22 Mississippi State: LSU suffered defeat two weeks ago but bounced back nicely by throttling previously unbeaten Georgia. Bulldogs QB Nick Fitzgerald will have to not only run the ball for 100-plus yards, he will also need to be effective through the air in spots. LSU QB Joe Burrow doesn’t have to play outside of himself as a game-manger in this one. Unless Mississippi State’s defense creates a few turnovers, the Tigers should come away with the victory. Bottom line it’s a very difficult task to play on the road at Tigers Stadium
The Pick: LSU 23 Mississippi State 16
#6 Michigan at #24 Michigan State: The Wolverines are fresh off an impressive victory over Wisconsin. At 4-2, Sparty remains a dangerous opponent as was the case last week taking down Penn State in happy valley. Both teams have great coaches, both needing a big win consecutive games in order to stay in the rat-race that is the Big-Ten East division. Michigan State can contain the rushing attack of the Wolverines, it will be up to QB Shea Patterson to make a few plays with his feet and arm.
The Pick: Michigan 20 Michigan State 17
Saturday Upset Special
Arizona wins with a backup QB as a 7.5-point road-underdog against UCLA.
#12 Oregon at #25 Washington State: The Ducks get to prove how real they are in interesting PAC-12 tilt away from Eugene. Oregon has to be feeling great having outlasted Washington in overtime putting them in position to win the PAC-12 North. The Cougars are generally a handful at home and on offense.
Maryland at #19 Iowa: Which Maryland team shows up to Des Moines against the Iowa Hawkeyes.
Iowa is built to play disciplined defense and wear down opposition with the run game. Perfect ingredients to contain the Terrapins option attack.
Against The Spread
Maryland loses to Iowa but by less than the 9-points the Hawkeyes are favored.
(Honorable Mention: #15 Washington will beat Colorado just not by the 15.5-points Las Vegas claims.)
Take it to the window LSU wins at home versus Mississippi State.
Take it to the window Nebraska will finally get a victory as the 3.5-point-home-favorite over Minnesota.
Quick Hits Recap & Top-4 & 3 More
-My Top-4 Rankings: #1 Alabama, #2 Notre Dame, #3 Clemson, #4 Ohio State. #5 LSU/Michigan & #7 Texas.
-Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is the bona-fide front runner for the Heisman Trophy award and for good reason. Tua has piled up 1,495 passing yards, 18 touchdowns and zero interceptions
-Ohio State sophomore QB Dwayne Haskins continues to put up the numbers, this time he was 33 of 44 for 412 passing yards and three touchdowns with no picks in a closer than expected 30-14 win over Minnesota.
-West Virginia’s embarrassing 152 total yards in a loss last week is the worst offensive output since 1995, ironically it came against Iowa State again.
-#6 LSU spanked #2 Georgia 36-16, putting up 275 rushing yards making it the largest victory over a Associated Press Top-2 in school history.
-Group of 5 programs #10 Central Florida and #21 South Florida managed to mount dramatic comeback wins both unbelievably by one point.
-Nebraska falls to 0-6 for the first time in school history dropping a game in overtime to Northwestern.
-Memphis RB Darrell Henderson is taking the nation by storm one carry at a time. Darrell has 110 carries for 1133 rushing yards and 13 TD’s.
Written by Chris Carlson Host of The College Ball Show Podcast available at blogtalkradio.com/ ropeadoperadio
Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio