Friday, October 17, 2008

Week 8 College Picks

#11 Missouri @ #1 Texas – Longhorns return to Austin after emotional rivalry win over Oklahoma while Missouri comes off a tough loss to undefeated Oklahoma State. In the OK State game, QB Chase Daniel was intercepted three times forcing throws into multiple defender coverage. Also, the Cowboys were able to shut down Missouri’s running game, turning the Tigers into a one dimensional team. They were able to drop 7 or 8 guys into coverage knowing the Tigers could not run the ball. Last week against Oklahoma, DE Brian Orakpo wreaked havoc on the Sooner offensive line. This week, he faces a steeper challenge against the Mizzou front that has only allowed 2 sacks all season. The Missouri spread offense allows for Daniel to line up 7 to 8 yards in the shotgun and very wide splits on the line. The wide splits and deep drop prevent quick releases to the quarterback, resulting in outstanding protection for Daniel. This scheme should be able to stop Orakpo from destroying Mizzou’s game plan. On the opposite side of the ball, Texas QB Colt McCoy has gained confidence and looked better and better each week. McCoy is a similar quarterback to Zac Robinson of Oklahoma State, except without an All-American running back in the backfield. Chris Ogbannaya of Texas, a serviceable back, and had a good stats against Oklahoma but were inflated by a couple long runs. Look for Missouri to run the ball to keep the potent Longhorn offense off the field.

Missouri, 44-41

#4 Oklahoma @ #16 Kansas - Sooners look to bounce back from humbling loss to Texas while Jayhawks look to prove that they are for real. While Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford shredded the Texas defense, RBs DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown were unable to get anything going on the ground, primarily due to the big Longhorn front. This week, against a softer Kansas front, the Sooner backs should succeed. The running game is the key to the success of the offense but Bradford's accuracy and efficiency are the strengths of the OU offense. While Kansas QB Todd Reesing has been impressive so far, the competition hasn't been up to Oklahoma's level. Bradford should be able to punish the Jayhawk defense for a big win.

Oklahoma, 51-28

#12 Ohio State @ #20 Michigan State - Coming off an impressive win over previously undefeated Northwestern, the Spartans look poised for an upset of Big Ten heavyweight Ohio State. Michigan State RB Javon Ringer has been everything and more for the Spartans, averaging over 100 yards a game. Ringer may wear down from the amount of carries he recieves, but not today against the Buckeyes. Ringer will be used to win the time of possession battle over young Terrelle Pryor. Pryor was impressive in his first few games but underwhelming in consecutive contests. The home field will be just enough for Michigan State to get by OSU.

Michigan State, 24-23

#22 Vanderbilt @ #10 Georgia - Vanderbilt's dream season took a hit last week with the loss to Mississippi State. Don't expect it to get any better this week against the tough Dawgs. The Bulldogs have been tough this year at home (excluding the ugly Alabama game), with a crowd the young Commodores have not dealt with yet. The Bulldogs' Knowshon Moreno will run over Vandy and lead Georgia to a win.

Georgia, 27-20

#25 California @ Arizona - A possibly good Cal Bear team heads to Tuscon to take on the somewhat impressive Arizona Wildcats. The Arizona defense has been stingy so far, ranking in the top 10 in major categories. Other than their stumble against Stanford, the Wildcats have looked good. The 'Cats D should be able to limit QB Nate Longshore.

Arizona, 24-21

Michigan @ #3 Penn State - Michigan lost to Toledo. TO-LED-O. From Indiana, or was it Ohio or are they in Oklahoma? And, oh yeah, it was at home in the Big House. Do I even need to mention Daryll Clark or Derrick Williams after Toledo (who lost to FIU) beat Michigan? The answer is no.

Penn State, 52-17

#17 Virginia Tech @ Boston College - In a rematch of one the most entertaining games from last season and a rematch of the ACC Championship, Virginia Tech comes in on a hot streak while Boston College has been mediocre. After an close opening week loss to a soon to be overrated East Carolina team, the Hokies have rebounded strong in winning 5 straight. Look for the strong ground game of VT to overtake BC's defense and home crowd.

Virginia Tech, 23-13

#13 LSU @ South Carolina - LSU is angry. Like really, really angry after being embarrassed at Florida last week. I would not want to be South Carolina, playing the Tigers this week after losing by 30. The Tigers should run away with it, but Steve Spurrier's crew will find a way to keep it close.

LSU, 27-16

Last Week: 5-3. Missed on Texas, Florida, and Oklahoma State but almost nailed Notre Dame-North Carolina and Arizona State-USC.

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