Quick Hits: CFB Week 8 Edition

I know that I saw every week that these will be short. Then I look at the games and numbers and start droning on and on. This time I mean it. Time is short and so I am. And no that’s not code.

Wake Forest at Duke
Sean Renfree may be the best passer Duke’s had in a very long time. That being said, he’s still at Duke. Yes, they’ve notched 3 wins, but they still fell to FCS Richmond to open the season and are coming off a thumping by Florida State. The Deacons are also coming off of a loss, to Virginia Tech, and are a passing team. But they’ve got the defense to back them up.
Casey’s pick: Wake Forest

North Carolina at #7 Clemson
Another passing team vs. passing team matchup. Clemson looks to be vulnerable, having just surrendered the most points of the season last week against Maryland. UNC got down to Miami early last week, then rallied but couldn’t grab the win. To me, this is still a Jekyl and Hyde team. They haven’t played that well against the best teams on their schedule. Despite the loss, the Tigers still look like one of the best 2 teams in the ACC.
Casey’s pick: Clemson

#25 Washington at #8 Stanford
I never thought that I would say something like this, but Washington will be Stanford’s first major test this season. Huskie QB Keith Price has put up Andrew Luck-like numbers and been very impressive in taking over for Jake Locker. The secondaries will get tested and while the Cardinal pass D hasn’t been good, Washington’s is worse. 116th in the country worse. Luck wins in a shootout.
Casey’s pick: Stanford

#23 Illinois vs. Purdue
The Illini got exposed last week by a tough Ohio State defense and an offense that had just done enough. Purdue’s defense is good but not great. They have a solid secondary but have let opponents move the ball on the ground. Illinois needs a solid game to stay in the Leaders division race, with the schedule getting much tougher from here on out.
Casey’s pick: Illinois

#6 Wisconsin vs. #16 Michigan State
This is looking like the game of the week. A top passing game against the top pass defense. A top rushing offense against the #3 rushing defense. This will be Russell Wilson’s first true test against a real defense. We saw how well Michigan State held Michigan and Denard Robinson in check last week. The defense may be affected with DE William Gholston serving a one-game suspension for his sucker punch last week. It’ll be a tough win, but I think the Badgers pass this test and solidify their grip on the Legends division (I feel so stupid typing that).
Casey’s pick: Wisconsin

#21 Penn State at Northwestern
Quick strike offense against grinding defense. Penn State hasn’t been able to do much on offense, but the Wildcats have one of the softest defense the Nittany Lions have seen all season. That’s right, I’m implying Temple’s D was stiffer. Silas Redd grinds out the clock, State’s D gives up some yardage and maybe a quick score, but Penn State will force turnovers and take their 6th straight win.
Casey’s pick: Penn State

#4 Oklahoma State vs. Missouri
Brandon Weeden was off last week, and the Cowboys showed that they’re resilient enough to win even if they’re top-rated passing game isn’t performing as well as normal. Don’t get me wrong though, this will not be an easy road game for the Cowboys, even though they’re riding an eight-game road win streak. This will be another shootout for OSU as Missouri may be one of the best 3-3 teams in the country. Another game I can sum up with too much coming from the favorite.
Casey’s pick: Oklahoma State

USC at Notre Dame
The Fighting Irish have seemed to overcome their early season troubles and have the offense firing on all cylinders. Tommy Rees has hit his stride and is coming off of a four touchdown performance against Air Force. USC’s defense is banged up and the secondary was already giving up too many yards as it is.
Casey’s pick: Notre Dame

Utah at California
I don’t have to much to say about this one. Just that California has shown flashes of offensive potential, they just need to get the right guy under center and develop chemistry in the offense. Utah’s offense hasn’t looked competent since the BYU game. The rush defense is the centerpiece of the Utes this year. Too bad the Bears are a pass-first offense.
Casey’s pick: California

#22 Georgia Tech vs. Miami (FL)
The Yellow Jackets will look to open up the offense some more this week and try to bounce back after their upset loss to Virginia. Paul Johnson has said that they probably need to throw the ball more this week, instead of just depending on their 2nd ranked rushing attack. Miami’s rush defense is near the bottom of the FBS, so they could easily be gashed for huge chunks of yardage at a time, primarily by Tevin Washington. If Miami gets out fast like they did against North Carolina, they’ve got a good chance here. But if Georgia Tech gets to control the pace of the game, the Hurricanes may be sunk in the ACC Coastal,
Casey’s pick: Georgia Tech

That’s the way I see it. I’ll let you know how Armando (assuming he remembers to pick this week) and TJ see it tomorrow afternoon with a standings update on Monday.

And here’s how they see it:

Game Armando TJ
Wisconsin vs. Michigan State Wisconsin Wisconsin
Illinois vs. Purdue Illinois Illinois
Oklahoma State vs. Missouri Oklahoma State Oklahoma State
Washington vs. Stanford Stanford Stanford
Penn State vs. Northwestern Penn State Penn State
USC vs. Notre Dame USC USC
North Carolina vs. Clemson Clemson Clemson
Georgia Tech vs. Miami (FL) Miami Georgia Tech
Utah vs. California California Utah
Wake Forest vs. Duke Wake Forest Wake Forest

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