NCAA College Football Week 8 Picks - Early Games

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NCAA College Football Week 8 Early Games

All times Eastern

Click here for late games.

Week 7: Rick: 6-7; Coin: 8-5
Cumulative: Rick: 42-56-1; Coin: 53-45-1

Friday, October 18

7:00 pm Pittsburgh (-3 1/2, 52) at Syracuse - The Panthers have owned the Orange of late, winning every annual meeting since 2013 except for a 27-24 loss at Syracuse in 2017. Many of the games have been close and last year's went into overtime, so the 1/2-point over a field goal might become an issue.

Notably, the orange are 0-2 in conference play; the Panthers 1-1. Pitt has allowed more points than they have scored but are 4-2 overall. The bulk of the scoring against the Panthers came in a loss to Virginia (30-14) and wins over UCF (35-34) and Duke (33-30).

Coin Flip: Syracuse

Prediction: Panthers 31 Orange 24

8:30 pm #4 Ohio State (-27, 49 1/2) at Northwestern - It's a down year for the Wildcats, as the enter this game with a 1-4 mark, whereas the Buckeyes come in ranked at a spot that would put them in the national championship playoff and are 6-0. Northwestern has a good defense, but almost no offense. That's a problem.

Ohio State has blown out every opponent by at least 24 points, but the sledding may be getting a bit tougher as the season drags onward. Last seen on October 5, the Buckeyes were knocking Michigan state out of the rankings with a 34-10 rout. Ohio State has won their two road games by 41 points each (Indiana, Nebraska). This one may be closer, but not by much.

Coin Flip: Northwestern

Prediction: Buckeyes 45 Wildcats 6

Saturday, October 19

12:00 pm #3 Clemson (-24, 61 1/2) at Louisville - The Tigers must be bummed out. hey've dropped from #1 to #3 over the past two weeks, passed by Alabama and now, LSU. Clearly the class of the ACC, Clemson leads by far in total defense and is second in scoring to Wake Forest 238-235.

Louisville has the second-worst defense in the conference, but they can score points (224 over 6 games). The defense allowed 39 points to Boston College and 59 last week at Wake Forest, but the Cardinals won both games, 41-39, and 62-59, respectively. Louisville is QB Jawon Pass is done for the season with a toe injury though he's been out since week two. The Cardinals will score, but how much?

Coin Flip: Louisville

Prediction: Tigers 42 Cardinals 24

12:00 pm West Virginia at #5 Oklahoma (-33 1/2, 63) - The Sooners are 6-0, getting no respect at #5, and should absolutely blow out West Virginia, which has the distinction of having allowed the most points in the conference while scoring the least. Somehow they're 3-3, as their wins have been close calls, but the losses by 11, 24, and 31 points. That progression plays right into Oklahoma's wheelhouse.

Coin Flip: West Virginia

Prediction: Sooners 56 Mountaineers 17

12:00 pm #9 Florida (-5, 47) at South Carolina - With the Gamecocks ripping up Georgia's unbeaten record last week and the Gators dumped by LSU, 42-28, this sets up pretty nicely for the home team to turn in another upset, though Florida is still 6-1. This being a second straight road game for the Gators and second straight home game for South Carolina, the schedule could be pointing in the direction of a tight battle or even a Carolina surprise.

Coin Flip: Florida

Prediction: Gamecocks 26 Gators 23

3:30 pm #2 LSU (-17 1/2, 62) at Mississippi State - The Tigers lead the nation at 52.5 points per game, and there's nothing anybody can do to slow them down. Their lowest point totals have come the past two weeks, 42, in wins over Utah State and Florida. Make QB Joe Burrow a Heisman candidate and take LSU seriously, because they look absolutely unstoppable.

3-3 Mississippi State won't be able to keep up.

Coin Flip: Mississippi State

Prediction: Tigers 45 Bulldogs 21

3:30 pm #12 Oregon (-3, 48 1/2) at #25 Washington - The Oregon Ducks lost their season opener at Auburn and haven't looked back, winning five straight and leading the PAC-12 North comfortably. Even if Washington upsets them, they still would trail in the conference standings by a game.

Surely, the Huskies will be up for the contest, and they don't have trouble scoring, but the Duck defense is third nationally in points allowed and that's saying something for a West coast team. After their 27-21 loss to Auburn, Oregon has allowed 25 points or five per game. Whoa, Nellie!

Coin Flip: Oregon

Prediction: Ducks 24 Huskies 16

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