The Gould Standard Pick Six: Week 8

Will Sparty thwart surging Michigan? Can Nebraska end drought? Your weekly picks.

What’s that old saying? Go West, Young Man.

I really, really have the urge to weigh in on Fresno State at New Mexico and Utah State at Wyoming. But I can’t abandon the Midwest and the South, even though they have not been fertile picking grounds..

And it really would be crazy to take two road teams that are each giving 14 points, which is what I would do. I just like the way Fresno and Utah State are playing.

But we’re going to resist that urge.

Even though my picks in the Midwest and South have. . . not been good, that’s where we need to be.

So here’s your Week 8 six-pack. Oh, gee. Let's make it a six-pack plus one. I'm thirsty for victory.

Gulp.

THE GAMES

(Central Flyover Time)

Michigan minus-7 at Michigan State, 11 a.m., FOX

Northwestern minus-20 at Rutgers, 11 a.m., BTN

Virginia plus-6½ at Duke, 11:30 a.m., ACCNE

Alabama minus-29 at Tennessee, 2:30 p.m., CBS

Minnesota plus-3½ at Nebraska, 2:30 p.m., BTN

Penn State minus-14 at Indiana, 2:30 p.m., ABC

Ohio State minus-13½ at Purdue, 6:30 p.m., ABC

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THE PICKS

Michigan minus-7 at Michigan State, 11 a.m., FOX

Michigan is 2-8 vs. Michigan State since Mike Hart called the Spartans ``little brother’’ in 2007. But that’s history. Current events: Michigan is hitting on all cylinders. And despite its impressive win at Penn State, MSU is messy. Something tells me, though, thatMichigan Statewill keep it close—a combination of history, Michigan exhaling and MSU being jacked up for ``big brother.’’

The Pick: Michigan State

The Score: Wolverines, 30-24

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Northwestern minus-20 at Rutgers, 11 a.m., BTN

There seems to be some debate about whether this is the biggest line Northwestern has ever been given against a Big Ten team. But there’s no question that the Wildcats will enjoy their trip to New Jersey.

The Pick: Northwestern

The Score: Wildcats, 38-14

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Virginia plus-6½ at Duke, 11:30 a.m., ACCNE

I don’t mean to be Cavalier about this, butDukehas been consistently solid against the spread all season. Kudos to Virginia for its big win vs. Miami but the Blue Devils are gritty and tough—and they’re at home.

The Pick: Duke

The Score: Blue Devils, 28-20

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Minnesota plus-3½ at Nebraska, 2:30 p.m., BTN

Do not adjust your sets. The team that is infamously 0-6 is the favorite against the team that is 3-3. I’m on board with it. WinlessNebraskahas been very competitive in its last two losses, at Wisconsin and Northwestern. All credit to Minnesota for hanging around at Ohio State last week. But the Gophers, who were drilled in their previous two games against Iowa and Maryland, have bad timing this week. The suffering ends here.

The Pick: Nebraska

The Score: Cornhuskers, 34-28

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Alabama minus-29 at Tennessee, 2:30 p.m., CBS

Tua Tagovailoa’s knee injury is not expected to keep him off the field this week. And that backup (Jalen Hurts) isn’t bad, either. In other words, I expectAlabamato roll. Plus, after picking the Tide to cover and getting burned a couple of times, I stayed away last week—and they covered.

The Pick: Alabama

The Score: Crimson Tide, 49-13

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Penn State minus-14 at Indiana, 2:30 p.m., ABC

I don’t know ifPenn Stateis elite or great after that ugly cave-in loss to Michigan State. But the Nittany Lions ought to be ticked off. And while Trace McSorley has ceded ``best Big Ten quarterback’’ to Ohiio State’s Dwayne Haskins, McSorley is still awfully good. And Penn State has put up 114 points in ite two previous road games at Pitt and Illinois.

The Pick: Penn State

The Score: Nittany Lions, 48-21

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Ohio State minus-13½ at Purdue, 6:30 p.m., ABC

This game pretty much sums up the vagaries of betting against the spread. Ohio State, has failed to drill Indiana and Minnesota at home the last two weeks, now goes on the road against a better team. Everything I know saysPurdue,which is playing much better now that it has settled on David Blough at quarterback, should give the Buckeyes a good scare. But I’m the first to admit I don’t know much.

The Pick: Purdue

The Score: Ohio State, 42-31

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LAST WEEK: 3-3

SEASON: 20-25-1

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