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Arnold Against The Spread Szn 2: Week 8

A massively successful Week 7 gives us hope for the rest of the season

NCAA Football: Iowa at Wisconsin Tork Mason-USA TODAY Sports

What a week it was for our picks in Week 7. We gained a ton of ground by going 8-2 over the week bringing our overall record to 27-31. Can we replicate that success in Week 8? Doing so would mean going above .500 overall for the first time all season! Let’s not waste any time, the odds* for the below picks come courtesy of our friends at DraftKings Sportsbook. This blog does not constitute financial advice.

Western Kentucky -7.5 at Jacksonville State

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

If last week’s matchup with Liberty showed us anything it’s that Jacksonville State will struggle with teams who have a touch more athleticism on the edges. With Western Kentucky’s ability to stretch the field, I think the Gamecocks are in a bit of trouble when the Hilltoppers come to town. I think WKU jumps out early and wins by 10 or more. Take Western Kentucky -7.5.

James Madison -3.5 at Marshall

I have bet against the Dukes multiple times this year and multiple times this year and multiple times they have proven me wrong. I have elected to not make the same mistake again. I’m taking James Madison to cover on the road against Marshall. Also, please let JMU play in the postseason. This squad deserves to go bowling. Do the right thing.

Penn State at Ohio State -4

Syndication: Hanover Evening Sun Dan Rainville / USA TODAY NETWORK

It gives me zero joy to make this prediction and I desperately hope my betting model is wrong on this one, but unfortunately, I am taking Ohio State to cover against Penn State. The Buckeyes in Columbus are tough to beat and Penn State hasn’t proven they can take that next step on the road yet. With that being said, I am absolutely cheering on the Nittany Lions come Saturday.

Mississippi State +7 at Arkansas

Along with Auburn, these two teams currently find themselves at the bottom of the SEC West. I think Arkansas is the better team but that won’t stop this game from being a sloppy mess that involves the Bulldogs keeping it within a touchdown. I like Mississippi State +7 in this one.

Air Force at Navy Over 37.5

NCAA Football: Wyoming at Air Force Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

It feels very, very wrong to take the over in a contest between two service academies but here I am. Other than a game against Sam Houston early in the season, this Air Force offense has been an efficient machine and scored 34+ points in each of their contests. I’m betting on Air Force getting at least 31 against Navy on Saturday. I’m just hoping this Navy offense can manage at least one touchdown of their own.

Minnesota at Iowa Under 32.5

It’s Iowa and Minnesota. These two teams are responsible for the lowest over/unders in college football annually. I’m taking the under and there isn’t much more to say about this one.

Wisconsin at Illinois Under 42.5

NCAA Football: Iowa at Wisconsin Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin managed just six points against Iowa last week. While the Illinois defense isn’t nearly as fierce as Iowa’s, this team still prefers a physical, plodding type of contest. I’m expecting another very low-scoring affair in the Big Ten West. Take the under in this one as well.

Oklahoma State at West Virginia Over 50.5

West Virginia is coming off of an absolute heartbreaker of a loss against Houston but the Mountaineers still have a lot to play for in 2023. Garrett Greene had an impressive performance against Houston and if he can replicate that against Oklahoma State, WVU should put up points. Meanwhile, this Oklahoma State team has been a bit of an enigma to me. I’m taking the over but the wise gambler probably doesn’t bet this game.

Ole Miss -6.5 at Auburn

NCAA Football: Arkansas at Mississippi Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

Ole Miss is probably due for a bit of a letdown game but I don’t think it happens on the road against a flagging Auburn offense. Look for Lane Kiffin’s squad to win this contest by at least a touchdown on the Plains when they take on the Tigers. I like Ole Miss to cover.

Coastal Carolina at Arkansas State Under 60.5

The under in this Sun Belt contest really jumped out to me. The Coastal Carolina offense isn’t quite as good as it has been in years past and Arkansas State isn’t likely to put up that many points on Coastal’s defense. Hammer the under.

Upset Special: Northwestern +340 at Nebraska

NCAA Football: Howard at Northwestern David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

I don’t love any of the underdog options for this week but Northwestern feels like the most plausible choice given the struggles of the Nebraska offense means this game is probably closer than it should be. I’m taking the Wildcats for my pick in the Upset Special this week.

What game are you most excited about in Week 8?

*Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See for details.