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Last Saturday featured two matchups between top-11 teams with LSU and Oklahoma emerging victorious. While there are no games of that magnitude this week, showdowns in the Big Ten, Pac-12, and Big 12 will go a long way toward determining conference champions.
Here's the betting breakdown for the biggest games in Week 8.
Penn State remained undefeated with a hard-fought 17-12 win in Iowa last week, covering as 3.5-point favorites. The young Nittany Lions are getting it done with defense this season, allowing just 8.2 points per game (second in the nation). Penn State hasn't given up more than 13 points in a game this year.
Michigan gets another shot against a highly ranked opponent after the Wolverines were smashed 35-14 by Wisconsin in late September. Since then, Michigan has won three straight since over Rutgers, Iowa, and Illinois, but Jim Harbaugh and Co. step up in class this week with a trip to Happy Valley.
While Penn State does come in with the No. 7 scoring offense, the Nittany Lions have been outgained in three of their five games against FBS opponents this season. Both Iowa and Pitt held Penn State to 17 points and now the Nittany Lions face a Wolverines defense allowing only 17.5 points per game. Michigan's defense has had success against Penn State, holding the Nittany Lions to 17 points or fewer in four of the last five meetings.
The line opened Penn State -9 and hadn't moved as of Wednesday. Despite their recent struggles against good teams, expect the public to be all over Michigan getting close to double digits. If you like the Wolverines, bet them early before the line drops closer to kickoff.
This is one of the rare weeks where the Pac-12 takes center stage. It can be argued that Oregon-Washington is the most important game of the weekend. The Ducks are the lone Pac-12 team still in the mix for a College Football Playoff berth but they can't afford to stumble on the road against Washington.
Oregon's defense has been smothering opponents this season. The Ducks rank third in scoring defense (8.7) and eighth in total defense (267.7). Since its loss to Auburn in the opener, Oregon hasn't given up more than seven points during its five-game winning streak.
Washington was predicted by many to be the Pac-12's best team this year, but the Huskies have already been upset twice by Cal and Stanford as double-digit favorites. While Washington did come back from a 17-13 halftime deficit to blow out Arizona on the road last week, the Huskies have allowed a season high in yardage in each of their last two games.
Washington has been close to unbeatable at home, going 17-1 straight up in its last 18 games at Husky Stadium. However, Oregon has been favored in Washington four times and won all of those games outright, while going a perfect 4-0 against the spread. Expect good two-way action on this game with sharp money coming in if the line moves off the important number of -3.
Can Baylor do it again? The Bears have won three straight conference games with two of the victories coming in the final seconds and overtime. Now the undefeated Bears travel to Stillwater to face a rested Oklahoma State team coming off a bye. The Cowboys are 5-1 ATS in their last six games following a bye.
Oklahoma State was a popular sleeper pick to win the Big 12 but has lost two of its last three games to Texas and Texas Tech, both on the road. The Cowboys return home, where they have been money, going 5-0 ATS in their last five games in Stillwater and 7-0 ATS the last seven versus teams with a winning record.
Baylor will need to get up again after two emotional wins in the last three weeks. The Bears will be a popular underdog play but haven't had much success at Boone Pickens Stadium, going just 1-9 ATS in their last 10 visits. Even though the home team has dominated this series of late, covering seven of the last nine meetings, Bears head coach Matt Rhule is 12-3 straight up as an underdog of fewer than seven points in his career. Look for Baylor to be in another tight game Saturday.
Thomas Casale is theScore's supervising editor of sports betting. He's been following the sports betting industry for almost 30 years. A devoted fan of the wishbone offense, Thomas bets on all sports but specializes in college football, NFL, and college basketball. Find him on Twitter @TheTomCasale.