College football Week 8: Scott Van Pelt's Winners

We went 5-4 week last week, eight over .500 midway through October. A 58% clip. We're chugging along waiting for another big week. Too many on the card again, had a couple of near cross-offs. Will let you know which ones so you can proceed accordingly.

Houston (-3, 51.5) at Navy
Noon ET on ESPNU, Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, Maryland

Van Pelt's pick: Navy +3

Let's get into in the noon window again and take Navy once more in Annapolis. Every Houston game is just chaos in all directions. It will likely be a ridiculous sweat, but so what, anchors away.

SVP: 6-3 all time when picking Navy

No. 21 Cincinnati (-3.5, 58.5) at SMU
Noon ET on ESPN, Gerald J. Ford Stadium, Dallas

Van Pelt's pick: SMU +3.5

Navy just backdoored SMU, which was in Bad Beats. We are taking the Ponies at home against Cincinnati. The Cats have won five in a row, but they've let some teams hang around who weren't as capable as SMU. We are taking them plus a little in Dallas. Shout to the Big Rig, Harry Higgs.

SVP: 29-11 all time when picking American Athletic Conference games

No. 7 Ole Miss at LSU (-2.5, 66.5)
3:30 p.m. ET, Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Van Pelt's pick: LSU -2.5

This one was a near cross-off -- we've struggled to get a read on LSU all year. Had the Tigers at home against Tennessee and they got absolutely trucked. But they are unranked and favored over an unbeaten top-10 team, that leaves us no choice than to back the Tigers. Let the band play "Neck," we'll pay the fine.

SVP: 8-5 all time when picking favorites in SEC games

Northwestern (+14) at Maryland
3:30 p.m. ET, SECU Stadium, College Park, Maryland

Van Pelt's pick: Northwestern (+14)

Am I really about to take the team playing the Terps on homecoming weekend when I plan to be in the Snake Pit on Saturday? I am. QB situation uncertain for the Terps and Northwestern has shown an ability to hang around. That's a lot of candy to be handing out. Happiness hedge here. Terps to win, but not by quite this many.

SVP: 1-3 all time when picking against Maryland

BYU at Liberty (+7)
3:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU, Williams Stadium (VA), Lynchburg, Virginia

Van Pelt's pick: Liberty +7

Was it a gambling man who once said, give me liberty -- or give me debt? I think it was. We don't want you in debt to your man -- let's light the fire and go with the Flames at home plus the TD vs. BYU.

SVP: Won five straight picks against BYU

Georgia Southern (+2.5) at Old Dominion
3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+, S.B. Ballard Stadium, Norfolk, Virginia

Van Pelt's pick: Georgia Southern +2.5

I don't know if I am the nation's finest Sun Belt tout -- but I think I must be close. We are taking another nibble and taking Georgia Southern again plus the small helper in Norfolk against Old Dominion.

SVP: 7-0 when picking Sun Belt teams this year

UCF at East Carolina (+5)
7:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU, Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, Greenville, North Carolina

Van Pelt's pick: East Carolina +5

Few things bring me as much joy as this picture. It represents so many things. Those who know -- know. No Quarter. Sup Dogs? More like home dogs? The Pirates battle UCF in Dowdy-Ficklen, where they're always dangerous.

SVP: 5-2 all time when picking East Carolina

Minnesota (+4) at 16 Penn State
7:30 p.m. ET on ABC, Beaver Stadium, University Park, Pennsylvania

Van Pelt's pick: Minnesota +4

The White Out game is one of the great events in the sport, the scene is special. This line kinda stinks a little bit and Ohio State is up next for the Nittany Lions. Feels like a tricky spot and we are rowing the boat with Sky-U-Mah in this tilt.

SVP: 5-2 all time when picking P.J. Fleck teams

No. 17 Kansas State (+3.5) at No. 8 TCU
8 p.m. ET, Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, Texas

Van Pelt's pick: Kansas State +3.5

Finally -- another game I have gone back and forth on all week. If it seems like TCU has been in big games for a month straight, it's because it has. At some point, does the energy wane just a little? Kansas State had a bye last week. We went with EMAW earlier this season on the road in Norman where they were outright winners. Now we are with them in Fort Worth in a huge Big 12 showdown.

SVP: 6-3 all time when picking matchup of ranked Big 12 teams