We’re into Week 8 of the college football season and Baylor is still undefeated, if you can believe that. That’s not likely to continue as we’re expecting them to lose this week in Stillwater when they visit the Cowboys.
Baylor at Oklahoma State
Odds: Oklahoma State -3.5 at PointsBet
The Baylor Bears are unbeaten this season, which is unquestionably impressive. It’s been a long time since the Bears have been bowl-eligible after their first six games. However, we have to have a bit of perspective here. Baylor has been skating by a little, winning on its last offensive possession against both Iowa State and Texas Tech at home. They’ve only played two road games and one of them was at Rice.
The Bears are not likely to remain unbeaten primarily because Oklahoma and Texas should beat them later in the season. However, Oklahoma State has a well-earned reputation for playing well at home against high-profile teams. The Pokes have won 12-of-15 as a home favorite of 3.5 to seven points and are 10-5 against the spread in those games.
There’s no question that Baylor has a solid defense and an effective offense, but the Pokes should be able to drag them into a shootout here, which is not where the Bears want to be. The Cowboys are seventh in total offense at 518.0 yards per game and that offense should help dictate the style of game. Look for the Cowboys to hand Baylor their first loss on the year.
Pick: Cowboys -3.5
Oregon at Washington
Odds: Oregon -2 at PointsBet
The Washington Huskies have occasionally played well this season, but not consistently at all. They’ve scored one touchdown apiece in their two losses this season, first to California in Week 2 and then to Stanford in Week 6, earlier this month. This isn’t the same CFP-caliber Washington teams we’ve seen in the past as their offensive line cannot control the line of scrimmage against good defenses, and Oregon has a very good defense.
The Ducks have allowed three, seven, six, and three points in their last four games, an average of just under five points per contest. That is phenomenal. Oregon should be able to hold Washington to no more than 20 points, and if that happens, the Ducks should easily be able to win this game.
The other key here is Washington’s run defense has been a mess. They’ve allowed 160.7 rushing yards per game, which ranks them 59th in the country. If Oregon is able to run, they’ll get the win.
Pick: Oregon -2
Louisiana-Monroe at Appalachian State
Odds: Appalachian State -16.5 at PointsBet
The Appalachian State Mountaineers are unbeaten and are now ranked in the Top 25. They won at North Carolina earlier this year, which is their signature win on the resume. That win looks even better now that North Carolina lost to defending national champion Clemson by one point.
The key to this game is that the Mountaineers appear to have the best defense in the Sun Belt Conference. Louisiana-Monroe beat a bad Texas State team by only 10 points last week and led by only three heading into the final few minutes of regulation. ULM’s other conference win was against a South Alabama team, which has endured a miserable season. Appalachian State is in an entirely different league, so I’m expecting them to shut down ULM and win comfortably.
Pick: Appalachian State
Overall 7-8 record on the season