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Saturday, October 23, 2010

College Football: Week 8 Pick'em

Last Week's Win/Loss: 7-3
Total Win/Loss since Week 2: 41-19

#7 Michigan St. at Northwestern
Alex's pick: Michigan State
Why: After a wakeup call last week versus Illinois, Michigan State now understands that they cannot take any team for granted. It is imperative they get off to a good start; Edwin Baker and Le'Veon Bell need to dominate the ground and get this offense rolling again. MSU by 1
Mississippi at #23 Arkansas
Alex's pick: Arkansas
Why: Mississippi has to game plan for two outstanding quarterbacks this weekend in Tyler Wilson and Ryan Mallet, and quite frankly the Rebel offense is not potent enough to keep up with the Razorback's offense. Averaging over 300 yards passing in the past 3 games, Arkansas will run away with this one. Arkansas by 17
#22 Kansas State at Baylor
Alex's pick: Kansas State
Why: Chase Coffman led this team to victory last week, however at Baylor it will be important for the defense to play contain on quarterback Robert Griffin. Last time they played a dual threat qb, it was Taylor Martinez carving up the Wildcat defense for a record breaking amount of rushing yards. K-State will learn from the mistakes, and rb Daniel Thomas will carry this offense to a W. K-State by 7
#13 Wisconsin at #15 Iowa
Alex's pick: Iowa
Why: The biggest reason Wisconsin was able to upset Ohio State last week, was the hard-nosed, effective rushing attack. Led by John Clay and James C. White, the Badgers ran for more than 180 yards on the ground. This week I believe will be much different. Iowa's front seven in my mind, is the most formidable in all of college football. Broderick Binns, Adrian Clayborn, Karl Klug, and Christian Ballard will need to understand the different run block schemes for the two very different runners (White and Clay). If they can disrupt the rush offense early on, it will minimize the effect of the play-action fake that Tolzien so effectively utilizes. Iowa by 6
#16 Nebraska at #14 Oklahoma State
Alex's pick: Nebraska
Why: One loss, and a million band-wagon fans jump off faster than ever could have jumped on for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. My goodness, the University of Texas Longhorns deserve credit for a well executed plan and a solid effort across the board. On the other side, Nebraska was misfortunate with a number of big pass plays dropped, and Bo Pelini will not allow this team to stay down. Nebraska's front seven, combined with the two future NFL prospect cornerbacks (Prince Amukamara and Alfonzo Dennard), will shut down the high-flying spread attack of the OK-State Cowboys. Nebraska by 10
#6 LSU at #5 Auburn
Alex's pick: Auburn
Why: So my question is who's the quarterback for LSU? Seriously, is this offense more one-dimentional? Last week Auburn faced a pass-only offense in Ryan Mallet, which tore apart their weak secondary. In what seems to be a perfect match, LSU can only run the football, Auburn's speciality on defense. Ranked 15th in the FBS, Auburn allows a shade more than 100 yards (101 ypg), and it should be crystal clear to coach Gene Chizik, LSU's plan of attack; Stevan Ridley and running the football. On the offensive side, Auburn will have a tough time against what could be the best defense they have played all season; Cam Newton needs to take over this ball-game, similarly to what he did against Mississippi State; ball control with qb-read plays, mixed in with sideline routes, and misdirection. Whoever can control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball, that Tiger will win this game. Auburn only plays better in the 4th quarter, winning a number of very close games in dramatic fashion, I feel Auburn will stay undefeated. Auburn by 3
North Carolina at #25 Miami (FL)
 Alex's pick: North Carolina
Why: Jacory Harris throws interceptions faster than Neftali Feliz in the 9th inning, and against one of the premier defenses in the ACC it should be no different than before. Miami beats the teams they're supposed to, and lose to any team that poses somewhat of a threat. North Carolina has done a good job this season of putting aside the off-field issues of their star-defensive players this season, and have made due with their talented depth. North Carolina wins a close one; North Carolina by 6
Air Force at #4 TCU
Alex's pick: TCU
Why: Defense wins championships, and while TCU doesn't garner the recognition that top schools OU and Oregon get, TCU remains one of the nation's toughest defenses. Although Air Force will be pesky and find ways to limit the Horned Frogs vertical attack with their vaunted secondary, TCU's athletic superiority and balance as a team will prove too much. TCU remains a threat to the BCS title game by moving on and staying undefeated. TCU by 7
#1 Oklahoma at #11 Missouri
Alex's pick: Missouri
Why: Ranked number 1 in the BCS Standings are the Oklahoma Sooners. Now add 80 to that number and that is where they rank in terms of passing defense. Allowing 227 passing yards per game, OU has avoided upset losses to Utah State, Air Force, and Cincinnati. On the flip-side, home team Missouri ranks amongst the top 20 in passing offense (averaging 282 ypg). Quarterback Blaine Gabbert has been cerebral this season, picking apart defenses and locating open receivers. Today should be no different, as I feel Gabbert and the spread offense of Missouri will roll out the passing yards; the question will be, can Missouri hold Oklahoma from tearing them apart in the passing game? Missouri ranks just 58th in the nation in pass defense, allowing 211 ypg. Oklahoma averages more than 300 yards passing per game. Not only that, but the Sooners also average more than 150 yards on the ground. A key in tonight's game will be, can Missouri generate a pass rush on Landry Jones consistently? If they can be disruptive with their front seven, led by Aldon Smith who is returning from injury, Missouri has a great chance of forcing unnecessary turnovers by Landry Jones, who tends to be erratic when faced with pressure. I am calling for the 3rd consecutive week of a #1 ranked team being upset by the College Gameday home team. Missouri by 6
Washington at #18 Arizona
Alex's pick:Washington
Why: Jake Locker has continued to improve since his poor outing against Nebraska, and is putting together a solid senior season. Arizona doesn't have quarterback Nic Foles due to injury, and I feel that Washington's athletic team will surprisingly dominate this meeting. Washington wins big; by 21

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