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Weekend Watch Guide: An Oklahoma State Fan’s Guide to Week 8 of the College Football Season

It’s setting up to be another good sports weekend.

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[Devin Wilber/PFB]

It’s setting up to be a good sports weekend for Oklahoma State fans.

The Cowboys play West Virginia at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, and there is a top-10 matchup in the morning time slot and a pair of top-20 tilts in the evening.

Here is a look around the Big 12 and the country for what should be the games of the weekend.

Big 12 Schedule

UCF at No. 6 Oklahoma — 11 a.m. Saturday on ABC
Baylor at Cincinnati — 11 a.m. Saturday on ESPN+
Oklahoma State at West Virginia — 2:30 p.m. Saturday on ESPN
No. 8 Texas at Houston — 3 p.m. Saturday on FOX
Texas Tech at BYU — 6 p.m. Saturday on FS1
TCU at Kansas State — 6 p.m. Saturday on ESPN2

This whole Power Five football thing has been tough on UCF thus far, as the Knights have started Big 12 play 0-3. They do, though, get quarterback John Rhys Plumlee back for their trip to Norman. Plumlee threw for 2,586 yards and ran for 862 yards last season to go with 25 total touchdowns.

If Cincinnati is going to win a Big 12 game this season, this game against the Bears might be the Bearcats’ best shot. Baylor’s 21.7 points a game ranks last in the Big 12, and its 30.2 points allowed per game ranks second to last in the league.

This will be the first time the Longhorns make the 2.5-hour drive to play the Cougars in Houston since 2001. It ought to be a great atmosphere at TDECU Stadium, but Texas is the heavy favorite.

At 3-4, Texas Tech is playing well below expectations this season, and the Red Raiders’ trip to Provo is no walk in the park. BYU is unbeaten at home this season, and this is a real shot for the Cougars to beat a Big 12 mainstay.

Kansas State rebounded from its loss in Stillwater with a big win in Lubbock. There is a bit of a mid-season QB battle happening in Manhattan after freshman Avery Johnson ran for five touchdowns last week. TCU, meanwhile, lost Chandler Morris to injury for the time being, but freshman Josh Hoover came in and threw for 439 yards and four touchdowns in the Horned Frogs’ win against BYU.

Football Thursday

Rice at Tulsa — 6 p.m. Thursday on ESPN2
James Madison at Marshall — 6 p.m. Thursday on ESPN

Tulsa enters its Week 8 matchup coming off a bye week after a disappointing loss at FAU. The Golden Hurricane is 3-3 with its other two losses being to Oklahoma and Washington (two CFP contenders). Rice, meanwhile, is also 3-3, having beaten the Big 12’s Houston earlier in the year.

The clash between James Madison and Marshall is big in the Sun Belt title race. James Madison is 6-0 and was the first team out of the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll. Marshall (We Are Marshall, I am Marshall) is on a two-game losing streak but is 1-1 in conference play. If the Thundering Herd can beat the Dukes, it sets up a chaotic finish in the Sun Belt East.

Saturday Selections

No. 7 Penn State at No. 3 Ohio State — 11 a.m. Saturday on FOX
No. 22 Air Force at Navy — 11 a.m. Saturday on CBS
Washington State at No. 8 Oregon — 2:30 p.m. Saturday on ABC
No. 17 Tennessee at No. 11 Alabama — 2:30 p.m. Saturday on CBS
South Carolina at No. 20 Missouri — 2:30 p.m. Saturday on SEC Network
Toledo at Miami (OH) — 3 p.m. Saturday on ESPNU
No. 16 Duke at No. 4 Florida State — 6:30 p.m. Saturday on ABC
No. 14 Utah at No. 18 USC — 7 p.m. Saturday on FOX

It feels as if Penn State is in this position often but has had a hard time taking that next step to truly join Ohio State and Michigan atop the Big Ten. But this feels like Penn State’s best team in a long time. The Nittany Lions average a league-best 44.3 points a game while holding opponents to just eight points a game (good for second in the league). The Buckeyes are third in the Big Ten in both of those categories.

Games between service academies are always a good time, and this week includes one with a ranked, unbeaten Air Force team playing on the road at Navy in what should be a fun environment.

After a strong start, Washington State enters its trip to Oregon on a two-game losing streak, but the Ducks are coming off the rollercoaster that was their 36-33 loss to Washington. Seeing where both these teams are mentally ought to make this one interesting.

Tennessee upset the Crimson Tide in Knoxville last season, but 2003 was the last time the Volunteers won in Tuscaloosa. Both teams enter with one loss.

South Carolina is 2-4. The Gamecocks probably shouldn’t be on these lists anymore, but here is a look at their losses: North Carolina (Current rank No. 10), Georgia (No. 1), Tennessee (No. 17) and Florida (receiving votes). So this battle between two schools from different Columbia’s has me intrigued.

Toledo and Miami (OH) each enter the MAC’s Game of the Week at 6-1 and unbeaten in conference play.

Duke quarterback Riley Leonard is day-to-day as the Blue Devils head to Tallahassee. Should he play, the Blue Devils have a chance to spoil the Seminoles’ College Football Playoff hopes and potentially make a case for themselves in the process.

The Trojans got ran out of South Bend last week, suffering a 48-20 loss to Notre Dame, but USC is still unbeaten in an uber-competitive Pac-12. Defending back-to-back Pac-12 champ Utah does have a league loss (to Oregon State), which makes finding a way to win Saturday paramount if the Utes want to three-peat.

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