ITA Staff Picks: Week Eight

Jeff is finally out of the basement after last week’s picks! Well, techically he just has a new roommate in Mike who is now tied for third after a 3-3 week thanks largely to Georgia Tech’s late game defense.

Of course everyone missed on the Syracuse and Boston College wins last week. What kind of craziness does week eight have in store for us?

Grant Atkinson: 56-9

Justin Cates: 54-11

Mike McDaniel: 52-13

Jeff Greenberg: 52-13

On to the picks.

Louisville (4-3, 1-3) @ Florida State (2-3, 2-2) (-6.5), Saturday 12 p.m. on ESPN

Justin Cates: Florida State wins.

Louisville couldn’t slow down a really bad Boston College offense, so I see no reason to believe they can stop an improving Seminole attack. It’s too bad because Lamar Jackson is still worth the price of admission every week.

Jeff Greenberg: Florida State wins.

This matchup looks nothing like we thought it would when the season began. Lamar Jackson is just getting no help at all. FSU at home might be what the doctor ordered for their offense.

Grant Atkinson: Florida State wins.

Wow. These are two teams who look NOTHING like they were supposed to at the beginning of the season. Florida State is improving, though, while Louisville is going the other direction.

Mike McDaniel:  Florida State wins

Florida State is due for an offensive outburst at some point, right? Louisville’s defense is putrid and the Seminoles should score in this game. Plus, Florida State’s defense can contain Lamar Jackson enough to make it difficult for the Cardinals to keep up. Seminoles win, and maybe even roll, at home.

Pittsburgh (2-5, 0-3) @ Duke (4-3, 1-3) (-8), Saturday 12:20 p.m. on ACCN Extra

Justin Cates: Duke wins.

Neither of these teams have been impressing lately, but I still feel that Duke has more tools to work with. Daniel Jones needs to get back to basics though and find something positive to build on.

Jeff Greenberg: Duke wins.

Duke needs to right the ship after three straight losses. A home game against Pitt gives them that opportunity, and they can’t waste it.

Grant Atkinson: Duke wins.

The Coastal Division is pretty ugly this year outside of the top three, and maybe UVA. I see Duke winning at home, but Pitt could cover.

Mike McDaniel:  Duke wins.

Duke is in a slump, but Pittsburgh can’t do ANYTHING right. Give me the Blue Devils to win a squeaker.

Boston College (3-4, 1-3) @ Virginia (5-1, 2-0) (-7), Saturday 12:30 p.m. on ACCN Extra

Justin Cates: Virginia wins.

After last week’s efforts from both teams, this should be a close one. Virginia is on a longer streak of success so I’ll take Kurt Benkert over BC’s sudden quarterback controversy.

Jeff Greenberg: Virginia wins.

This game is tricky based on what Boston College pulled off against Louisville. Virginia had a close one in Chapel Hill due to the UNC defense causing some problems. BC’s defense has that chance, but I think UVA wins at home.

Grant Atkinson: Virginia wins.

I would say this is UVA’s chance to prove itself against a crossover opponent, but BC hardly presents a huge challenge. UVA could easily be 7-1 heading into November.

Mike McDaniel:  Virginia wins.

Boston College’s run defense has been pretty average this year, with its fair share of brutal efforts (see Notre Dame, Louisville). Virginia has developed into a very good running team thanks to the emergence of Jordan Ellis at running back. Virginia’s defense should be able to slow down a bad BC offense (I don’t care about the fluky game against Louisville), and Virginia’s offense is much more balanced than it has been in the past. ‘Hoos win.

Syracuse (4-3, 2-1) @ #8 Miami (5-0, 3-0) (-16), Saturday 3:30 p.m. on ESPN

Justin Cates: Miami wins.

I’m not 100% sold on Miami at this point. The Canes are certainly good, but after back-to-back narrow wins I don’t know if they’re truly top ten caliber. That said I can’t see the Orange pulling consecutive upsets.

Jeff Greenberg: Miami wins.

Game of the week, based on Syracuse’s huge upset of Clemson. Syracuse has the offense to win this game. If Miami protects the ball they should win

Grant Atkinson: Miami wins.

Syracuse produced a shocker against Clemson that gave Hokie fans horrible flashbacks. Luckily for the U, this game is not in the Horror Dome, so they should be fine.

Mike McDaniel:  Miami wins.

I’m with Cates, I don’t buy Miami at all. They won two games against FSU and Georgia Tech that they probably should have lost, and it took a strong second half effort to come back and beat Toledo. The Hurricanes are ripe for an upset, but I think they beat Syracuse this weekend in a relatively close game. Syracuse should keep this fun until late when the ‘Canes pull away.

North Carolina (1-6, 0-4) @ #14 Virginia Tech (5-1, 1-1) (-21), Saturday 3:30 p.m. on ESPN2

Justin Cates: Virginia Tech wins.

I’m not convinced the Hokies will cover a three touchdown line, but I think they’ll win comfortably. Carolina is just in too deep of a hole to climb out at this point in the season.

Jeff Greenberg: Virginia Tech wins.

I would love to pick the upset here, but there aren’t enough pieces healthy for UNC to pull that off. It will be closer than people think but the Hokies will win at home behind their defense.

Grant Atkinson: Virginia Tech wins.

UNC is absolutely reeling this season after a rash of injuries. With their recent antics on the scandal front, it’s hard to feel bad for them. Hopefully Tech can provide more justice than the NCAA could.

Mike McDaniel:  Virginia Tech wins.

North Carolina is rebuilding AND they’re injured. North Carolina should keep it relatively competitive early, but I think the Hokies will pull away in the second half and win convincingly over the Tar Heels.

Wake Forest (4-2, 1-2) @ Georgia Tech (3-2, 2-1) (-6.5), Saturday 7:30 p.m. on ESPNU

Justin Cates: Wake Forest wins.

John Wolford is back and Wake Forest played pretty well without him. The Demon Deacons are sneaky good on defense and I think they can compete in the trenches on both sides of the ball. I’m calling for a mild upset.

Jeff Greenberg: Wake Forest wins.

This is another interesting game to me. Georgia Tech has to rebound from a game they should have won. Wake’s defense can give them fits. The Demon Deacon offense can be the difference here in Atlanta.

Grant Atkinson: Georgia Tech wins.

Georgia Tech definitely should have beat Miami last week, but they fell victim to whatever voodoo magic is keeping the Hurricanes undefeated this season. I see them coming out angry against the Demon Deacons.

Mike McDaniel:  Georgia Tech wins.

Georgia Tech is one of the best 3-2 teams in the country, losing their two games by TWO points total. I like the Yellow Jackets here on their homecoming to win, although Wake Forest should be right in the game with a chance in the fourth quarter.

Leave a Reply