Top 5 College Football Matchups: Week 8

The thrilling finish between Oregon and Washington highlighted another great weekend of college football. At this point in the season, we’ve begun to figure out who is for real and who isn’t, and a real group of playoff contenders have formed. This weekend we’ll be treated to another top-10 rivalry and more important conference games. Here are your top five college football matchups of week 8.

5. No. 22 Air Force (6-0) at Navy (3-3)

When: Saturday, 7:30 pm ET

Where: Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD

Where to watch: CBS

Spread: Air Force (-10)

Of all the week 8 matchups, I didn’t ever think this game would be on my radar, but it should be. I got a chance to watch Air Force play against a solid Wyoming team last weekend and loved their style of play. They have the best rushing attack in college football, and their defense is ranked third in the country. Although Navy is 3-3, they match up very well with the Falcons and have an elite rushing attack of their own. I don’t see Air Force covering this spread on the road, and they will be on upset alert to take their first loss of the season.

4. No. 16 Duke (5-1) at No. 4 FSU (6-0)

When: Saturday, 7:30 pm ET

Where: Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee, FL

Where to watch: ABC

Spread: FSU (-14.5)

There are some great ACC matchups in week 8, but our pick goes to Duke traveling on the road to take on the undefeated Noles. FSU has had some ups and downs this year, but it hasn’t mattered. They’ve proven they can win when things get tough, and look like the best team in the nation when everything is clicking. The question is what type of FSU team we will get this Saturday because they can’t afford a sloppy performance against a consistent team like Duke. The Blue Devils are playing with no pressure and have a chance to secure their first-ever victory against a top-five team, on the road no less. Duke also has a chance to have their star quarterback Riley Leonard available to play after suffering an ankle injury in their loss to Notre Dame. This will be a good litmus test for the Noles, if they can convincingly beat this team, I don’t think they’ll have any issues making it out of the ACC.

3. No. 14 Utah (5-1) at No. 18 USC (6-1)

When: Friday, 7:30 pm ET

Where: LA Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, CA

Where to watch: FOX

Spread: USC (-7)

USC needs to put that embarrassing loss behind them as they get ready to face another physical team that loves to run the ball. But that could change if the Utes finally get Cam Rising back at quarterback after the ACL injury he suffered in the Rose Bowl last season. Regardless of whether he plays, there’s not much reason to be putting faith in USC after their last three games. They’ve allowed over 40 points in those games and have put too much on Caleb William’s shoulders to get them wins. I think Utah has a great chance to send the Trojans sprialing out of the playoff race.

2. No. 17 Tennessee (5-1) at No. 11 Alabama (6-1)

When: Saturday, 3:30 pm ET

Where: Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL

Where to watch: CBS

Spread: Alabama (-8.5)

Our top SEC matchup of week 8 has to go to the rivalry game between Tennessee and Bama. It hadn’t been much of a rivalry until the Vols shocked the Tide at home last season, and now they’re in a solid position to get their first road win in Tuscaloosa in 20 years. The Vols bounced back from their loss to Florida and have put together a nice string of wins since then. Their defense took a major step forward this year and they are still dangerous offensively, but this time with their rushing attack. Alabama has also improved following their loss to Texas, but I still don’t see what they do really well offensively. I see this game being much lower scoring than last year but it will still be close.

1. No. 7 Penn State (6-0) at No. 3 Ohio State (6-0)

When: Saturday, 12:00 pm ET

Where: Buckeye Stadium, Columbus, OH

Where to watch: FOX

Spread: Ohio State (-4.5)

Speaking of low-scoring matchups, our top game for week 8 goes to the 7th and 1st best defenses in the country. This is the sixth ranked matchup in a row between these Big Ten rivals, but the Buckeyes have dominated the series, winning nine of the last ten games. Both squads are very evenly matched, but this could be Penn State’s best chance to finally take them down. Ohio State doesn’t look like the team that can run the table, and the Lions have some talent advantages on defense that can give Kyle Mccord plenty of issues. Whatever happens, this game will have massive implications on the Big 10 Championship and the playoff.

Honorable Mentions:

Washington State (4-2) at No. 9 Oregon (5-1)

Clemson (4-2) at Miami (4-2)

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All odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook