What to Watch, Week 8: Jamies Winston or Tajh Boyd?

Graham Watson
October 18, 2013

We’ve heard the old adage that every weekend counts and Michigan and Stanford learned that the hard way last week. Both teams fell from the ranks of the unbeaten and Stanford might have cost itself a shot at the national championship.

Here’s a quick recap of last week:

As noted above, these two teams pulled off some stunning upsets:

This fan had as bad of a day as his team:

Les Miles treated us to an epic Les Miles rant:


Shaq Evans keeps doing awesome things while no one is watching:

Missouri stayed undefeated:

And Johnny Manziel doing Johnny Manziel-like things (again):

OK, that’s your review. Here’s what to watch in Week 8:

Game of the week:

No. 5 Florida State at No. 3 Clemson, 8 p.m. ET
This game is always the marquee matchup in the ACC, but this quarterbacking battle is something college football fans have been waiting for all season. Florida State redshirt freshman quarterback Jameis Winston has thrilled by making athletic plays to lead the Seminoles to wins. Clemson’s Tajh Boyd, a veteran, has also played well and has already been in a marquee quarterback matchup this season when he bested Georgia’s Aaron Murray. Both of these quarterbacks are Heisman contenders and both of these teams are in the national championship hunt. When this one is over, only one team and player will keep those dreams afloat.

Game to watch:
No. 9 UCLA at No. 9 Stanford, 3:30 p.m. ET

This game lost a little of its luster after Utah upset Stanford last week, but both of these teams still have a lot for which to play. UCLA is trying to strengthen its hold on the Pac-12 South lead and Stanford needs to keep winning to keep pace with North leader Oregon and Oregon State. Stanford hasn’t lost consecutive games in four seasons, so the Cardinal will be fired up for this one. Stanford is the better team, but the Bruins will be eager for a little respect and to avenge last year’s Pac-12 championship game loss.

Also check out…
No. 22 Florida at No. 14 Missouri, 12:21 p.m. ET

All eyes are on Missouri this week after its upset of Georgia last weekend. However, many don’t expect the Tigers to stay undefeated with starting quarterback James Franklin out because of a shoulder strain. But Florida will see Missouri’s injury and multiply it. The Gators are without their starting quarterback, starting right tackle, starting running back and best pass rusher. Missouri doesn’t need a great quarterback to beat Florida – it has plenty of other offensive weapons and a strong defense – but it does need a quarterback that won’t turn the ball over.

Don't waste your time with:
No. 11 South Carolina at Tennessee, 12 p.m. ET

South Carolina is only favored by 7.5 points, but after the way they handled Arkansas last week, Tennessee better be at its best. Tennessee does play better at home – see its game against Georgia – but if South Carolina is clicking on all cylinders, which it has been the past couple weeks, the Gamecocks are scary good.

Keep an eye on:
Nick Marshall, QB, Auburn

Marshall missed last week’s game against Western Carolina while recovering from a knee injury he suffered against Ole Miss the week earlier, but coach Gus Malzahn announced he’s ready for Texas A&M. The Tigers are going to need him if they want to keep pace with Johnny Manziel and the ridiculous A&M offense. The Auburn defense has confidence it can stop Manziel, but if Alabama couldn’t, Auburn’s chances are slim. That means all eyes are going to be on Marshall to match Manziel’s effort. That’s a tall task for any quarterback, but especially for one that is only completing 59.2 percent of his passes this season.

Upset alert:
Arizona State (+3.5) vs. No. 20 Washington, 6 p.m. ET

Washington is coming off consecutive losses to Stanford and Oregon and heading into an incredibly hostile environment in Tempe. Washington does have the best defense the Sun Devils have faced this season, but if it doesn’t show up and the Sun Devils can get their offense going, this game could get away from the Huskies in a hurry.

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Graham Watson is the editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at dr.saturday@ymail.com or follow her on Twitter!