We are off for another fun weekend of college football.
Week 8 may not have the elite matchups like Tennessee vs. Alabama, but there are still five ranked vs. ranked games and a bunch of others that are very interesting for various reasons.
For example, Ole Miss is undefeated and ranked No. 7 in the nation, but is an underdog on the road against unranked LSU. There are also anxiety-provoking games for programs like Penn State, which hosts Minnesota following an ugly loss to Michigan, and Texas A&M, which is just a three-point favorite on the road against Carolina. from the South and desperately needs a win.
There are also many games with major implications for college football divisions, conferences, and even the playoffs. We are past halfway through the season, so each week becomes more important.
(Note: All times ET, odds from BetMGM)
Time: Noon | Television: ABC | Line: Clemson -13.5 | Overall: 49.5
Syracuse had 10 wins in 2018 but never won more than five games in Dino Babers’ other five seasons at the top of the program. Until this season. Syracuse is 6-0 for the first time since 1987 and is coming off a 24-9 win over No. 15 NC State. Going down to Clemson will be Syracuse’s biggest challenge of the season by a significant margin. Clemson, now 7-0, is much more battle-tested and looking to take control of the ACC Atlantic. The Tigers have been on the road in three of the past four weeks and have won over Wake Forest, NC State (with a healthy Devin Leary at QB) and Florida State in that span. Clemson’s offense was one of the worst in the ACC last year, but it’s improved a lot this year.
Time: 3:30 p.m. | Television: ABC | Line: UT -6.5 | Overall: 60.5
This is one of two massive Big 12 games this weekend. While TCU and Kansas State are conference undefeated, Texas and Oklahoma State have just one Big 12 loss each. Texas, after a 2-2 start, has won three straight games and found star quarterback Quinn Ewers in the lineup in its last two outings. Oklahoma State, meanwhile, saw a huge opportunity slip away last week. OSU faced TCU in a battle of undefeated teams and the Cowboys had the horned frogs on the ropes, but allowed TCU to fight back and ultimately win in double overtime. Can Mike Gundy’s team bounce back from such a disappointing loss?
Time: 3:30 p.m. | Television: Fox | Line: Oregon -6 | Overall: 70.5
UCLA is undefeated at 6-0 and is coming off back-to-back home losses to Washington and Utah. UCLA is an underdog again this week, but this time it’s on the road to Oregon, Chip Kelly’s former stomping grounds. The Bruins are led by quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson and running back Zach Charbonnet. On the other side is Oregon, which has been hot since its ugly season opener loss to Georgia. The Ducks are in their first season under Dan Lanning, who helped UGA win the national title last year as defensive coordinator. Oregon’s strong suit, however, has been its offense. After posting just three points in the loss to UGA, Oregon has averaged 49.8 points per game in the five games since.
Time: 3:30 p.m. | Television: CBS | Line: LSU -1.5 | Overall: 67.5
With No. 6 Alabama set to host No. 24 Mississippi State in the 7 p.m. window, this looks like the most competitive SEC game on Saturday’s schedule. Ole Miss is 7-0 and ranked No. 7 in the nation, but is actually a slight underdog heading into her trip to Baton Rouge to face LSU. LSU, in its first season under Brian Kelly, has had its ups and downs so far in 2022, but the win over Florida was LSU’s best offense all year. Can a performance like that continue in this week’s showdown with Ole Miss?
Time: 8 p.m. | TV: FS1 | Line: TCU-3.5 | Overall: 54.5
TCU has been one of the biggest storylines of the season so far. In the first year under Sonny Dykes, the Horned Frogs were expected to finish in the middle of the pack in the Big 12. Instead, they are the last undefeated team remaining in the conference at 6-0 and 3-0 in the league. Meanwhile, Kansas State should be nice and rested after its bye week. The Wildcats are 5-1 this year, having only lost at home to Tulane in an upset. K-State’s strong start was led by QB Adrian Martinez. A transfer from Nebraska, Martinez only threw for 900 yards, but he rushed for 546 yards and nine points and was a great pair with sneaky running back Deuce Vaughn. Those two, plus a solid K-State defense, will present a big challenge to TCU.