In the interest of full disclosure, I had a hard time figuring out which three games to post in this space. The wonderful matchups in Week 8, though not as plentiful as Week 7, have point spreads that will make you think twice. I intentionally left some picks blank before this week’s preview podcast, because I genuinely needed to talk them out with my co-host Dan Rubenstein. Podcasts can be therapy, even for the podcasters themselves.
This level of indecision happens to me every season around mid-October. I’m not sure if it’s because I have a half season’s worth of assumptions weighing me down, or because I start each week by comparing points spreads against my own spreadsheet. Either way, I tried to minimize outside influences this week (other than my co-host’s, of course) and get back to what got us in the black.
Let’s go 3-0…
Kansas +9.5 over Baylor
I mean, have you SEEN the Big 12 standings lately? The amount of parity in this conference is on par with the NFL. Kansas currently sits in the middle of the pack with a 2-2 conference record and has acquitted itself extremely well through the first seven weeks of the season. Even though I believe Baylor to be the better overall team, I don’t believe Baylor is 9.5 points better than anyone in the conference.
Bet Kansas +9.5
Ole Miss +2 over LSU
Ole Miss has only played away from home twice this season at Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech. With respect to those two fine institutions, they’re no match for what the Rebels will face in Death Valley on Saturday afternoon. How will Lane Kiffin’s squad respond?
I still believe that the combination of the Ole Miss ground game with a solid defense is good enough to keep them in the upper crust of this year’s SEC. I also think LSU is improving each week. Jayden Daniels seems to be settling in and Brian Kelly has, thus far, avoided the odd quarterback quandaries that got him into trouble at Notre Dame.
This will be a battle, but ultimately, I’m trusting my gut and going with the better rushing attack and snarkier coach.
Bet Ole Miss +2
Kansas State +3.5 over TCU
One week after TCU’s thrilling, come-from-behind, overtime victory over Oklahoma State, it returns to Fort Worth with a top ten ranking against a Kansas State team that is just weird. This is a situation that feels ripe for a letdown spot for the Horned Frogs.
Every year is kind of the same for the Wildcats, isn’t it? Their offensive identity runs through a playmaking quarterback, who powers the offense mainly with his legs, and a complementary running back who shoulders the load. Chris Klieman is proving again that the system can work with the right personnel.
Kansas State will win this game outright, knocking TCU from the ranks of college football’s unbeaten and elevating itself to the top of the Big 12.
Bet Kansas State +3.5