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The Big E College Football Picks: Week 8

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College GameDay is in Harrisonburg, Virginia this weekend for James Madison vs. Richmond.

Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

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We have a tie atop our leader board! Heading into the weekend we have dudeacow and Beardown_Irish sitting in 1st place with 90-53 records.

Our week 7 leaders were Golden_Boy and Equapainteous St. Paint with 15 wins.

LEAGUE STANDINGS

Big E: 12-6 (28th place, 77-66 overall)

Now for this week's picks...

No. 6 Clemson (-6.5) at Miami

Pick: Clemson

Tune in this weekend for the death rattle of the Al Golden Era. A loss here gives the Hurricanes 3 on the season and would force them to play perfect down the stretch to avoid a middling bowl game. Somewhere, Randy Shannon is laughing.

For Clemson, it's about time they started making more noise for the playoff committee. That seemed to begin in earnest last week as they blitzed a really good Boston College defense with plenty of points. Unless they fall asleep in a 1/4 full stadium that should continue this weekend.

Indiana (+16.5) at No. 7 Michigan State

Pick: Indiana

I'm just saying, there is a very high Body Blow Theory here as the Spartans are coming off the highest of high victories last week. Nothing in college football can be truly shocking (okay, the Fail to the Victors was close) and a Hoosier win here would make so much sense from a BBT standpoint.

I won't call for the outright upset but I think State's going to struggle a lot regrouping after last week. Maybe even trail into the 4th quarter. Possibly win in overtime.

No. 23 Duke (+2) at Virginia Tech

Pick: Virginia Tech

For some reason this game really grabbed my attention this week. A win by Duke and they inch that much closer to being a top-tier ACC program for the third year in a row. Truly amazing. Then you have the Hokies who could be looking at their 5th loss already this season.

Something about this game tells me it'll predict Beamer's future in Blacksburg. If they win and move closer to .500 he'll be back in 2016. If they lose, it's all over. Those string of 10+ win seasons weren't that long ago, but man, do they feel like it right now.

I'm picking the Hokies because Duke hasn't covered in any of the games I've picked this year.

Tennessee (+15.5) at No. 8 Alabama

Pick: Alabama

I hate, hate, hate laying all these points down in a SEC matchup with two teams with plenty of talent. Still, Alabama has that early 90's Notre Dame vibe going right now. Maybe not the absolute best team in the country but one that looks like it sometimes and can put a serious hurting on good teams.

Are the Vols a good team? I'm not ready to make that claim.

No. 15 Texas A&M (+6) at No. 24 Ole Miss

Pick: Texas A&M

Not many think Alabama or LSU are going to be caught in the SEC West now, which means this is an elimination game for these clubs. Each have suffered a loss in conference play and will have a large mountain to climb hoping the Tide or Bayou Bengals slip up down the stretch.

I like the Aggies a lot here as the road dog. Somehow the Rebels beat Alabama but that win is looking more and more fluky as the season moves along. Ole Miss just doesn't seem like they're THAT good with a porous run game and all those swarming defensive backs gone from last year.

No. 9 Florida State (-5) at Georgia Tech

Pick: Florida State

Don't look now but Everett Golson had one of the finest games of his career last week. He's starting to get more comfortable and loosen up within the Seminoles offense. Still no turnovers yet. Can they keep Cook's hamstring from falling off the bone? That might be the more important question.

Somehow, the Yellow Jackets are still getting respect with this line. I'm not sure I understand it they are clearly not the team they were last year. It's completely amazing they could be 2-6 by Saturday night. Biggest disappointment in the country right now.

No. 3 Utah (+3.5) at USC

Pick: USC

So this is kind of interesting as Kyle Whittingham has become the early favorite to become the next USC head coach. And voila! Now he has to take his undefeated Utes into Los Angeles to play that exact program. 
I think the line here is onto something. USC comes through with the upset and makes it really hard for Whittingham to sleep for a few days.