College Football bets for Week 8 of the NCAAF season.
This week’s college football slate is a little light on the high-profile matchups, as the Texas A&M/Ole Miss showdown is the only game featuring two ranked teams. That doesn’t mean we can’t make a little money, though, and we’ve been doing fairly well in that department lately, taking home profits of at least 2 units in three of the past four weeks.
Here are this week’s selections:
Northwestern @ Nebraska Saturday 17:00 GMT
Line: Nebraska -7 (Coral)
Northwestern started the season with five straight wins but the wheels have totally come off, as they’ve lost their last two games by 68 combined points. And while some may expect them to stop the bleeding against a 4-loss Nebraska team, I have a feeling it’s going to go the other way– that is, I expect the Wildcats to lose in another one-sided rout. After all, there’s a history of this sort of collapse in Pat Fitzgerald’s program. Just two years ago they won their first four games, with each win coming by 14 points or more, and then proceeded to lose their next seven. That Northwestern team was much better than this year’s version on the offensive side of the ball, so another extended losing streak certainly isn’t out if the question. And it sort of makes sense– as the “Vanderbilt of the Big Ten”, the ‘Cats aren’t as deep and talented as some of their conference rivals, so the line is pretty thin between winning/competitiveness and losing/non-competitiveness. As the year rolls on, with injuries piling up and teams figuring each other out, Northwestern oftentimes just can’t stop the bleeding. We’re in the midst of one of those stretches I believe, as the solid Wildcat defense has finally been broken and can no longer cover for an offense that has been putrid all season. Nebraska can’t stop the pass, but that should’t be a problem this week because the Northwestern passing attack teeters between “pedestrian” and “nonexistent”. What the Cornhuskers can do is score, putting up 28 points or more in five of their seven games thus far. The ‘Cats just won’t be able to keep up with that kind of offensive production. Look for Nebraska to win this one in a rout.
Indiana @ Michigan St. Saturday 20:30 GMT
Line: Michigan St. -17 (bet365)
Last week the Spartans pulled off the kind of miracle that they’ll be talking about as long as they play football in East Lansing. How do you come down from an emotional high like that? They’d better figure it out quick, because they host an Indiana team on Saturday that surely views this game as a potentially season-making opportunity, and the Hoosiers are better equipped to give the Spartans a game than they have been in several years. This Indiana offense is no joke– they average 34.1 points per game and they just hung 52 on Rutgers last week. The Michigan St. defense, meanwhile, isn’t as good as they have been in years past, as they’ve surrendered 21 points or more in six of their seven games. Of course the Indiana defense isn’t very good either, and the only way the Hoosiers are going to make this a game is by matching the Spartans score-for-score. And while I’m not sure if they’ll do quite that well, I do expect Indiana put at least 28-30 points on the scoreboard, which is going to make it awful difficult for State to cover that 17-point number.
Missouri @ Vanderbilt Saturday 21:00 GMT
Line: Missouri -3 (bet365)
This game won’t be pretty to watch. As a matter of fact, it’s going to be downright ugly. Missouri has really struggled on offense this season, scoring 13 points or fewer in four of their last five games. They’re starting true freshman Drew Lock at quarterback, but even with the now-suspended Maty Mauk under center the Tigers had trouble moving the ball with any consistency. They managed just 6 points in a loss to Georgia last week and 3 points against Florida the week before that. Now they face a Vanderbilt team that has been excellent on defense this season, surrendering just 18.5 points per game and ranking 20th nationally in yards allowed. Thing is, the Commodores have been nearly as bad as Missouri on offense and their only two wins have come against Austin Peay and Middle Tennessee St., the latter game a tight 17-13 contest. Considering this and the fact that Missouri is the two-time defending SEC East champ with a 4-2 record, it’s no surprise that the Tigers are favored here. Look out, though– Vanderbilt is at home, facing a freshman quarterback who’s leading an offense that has produced a total of 9 points in two games. This would be the biggest win of Derek Mason’s brief tenure with the ‘Dores, and I think he gets it.
Recommended Bets (1-3 unit scale)
1 unit Nebraska -7 at 1.95 (Coral)
1 unit Indiana +17 at 1.8 (bet365)
1 unit Vanderbilt +3 at 1.86 (bet365)