Scully's NCAAF Week 9 picks: Cincinnati will crush Memphis
The Big Ten returned to play last weekend, and the college football season will be back in full swing when the Pac-12 gets started Nov. 7.
After a slow start, my picks have performed well, with three consecutive winning weeks. Let’s keep the momentum rolling in Week 9, with a couple Big Ten selections, and I’m riding with the defensive stalwart of the AAC conference.
Memphis vs. Cincinnati
Sat, October 31 2020, 4:00 PM
Cincinnati will put a beating on Memphis.
The Bearcats possess one of the best defenses in college football, and the offense finally caught up in Week 8, as No. 7 Cincinnati rushed for 313 yards in a 42-13 rout of SMU.
Strong-armed quarterback Desmond Ridder can hurt teams with his arm and legs. He rushed for 179 yards on eight carries against SMU, and he will continue to impress NFL scouts against a horrendous Memphis defense.
The Tigers are 3-1, but they were fortunate to beat Central Florida and exit a sloppy win over Temple, where they rallied from a halftime deficit. Memphis quarterback Brady White went 17-for-36 against the Owls defense, and Temple put up 500 yards to outgain Memphis.
Cincinnati is at a different level. Memphis brings out the best in their conference rival, and this game has the makings of a double-digit blowout.
Northwestern vs. Iowa
Sat, October 31 2020, 7:30 PM
Both teams feature solid defensive play, but Iowa’s offense looks like a work in progress. Northwestern is worth backing as an underdog.
Northwestern has relied heavily on the run forever, but Peyton Ramsey brings a new dimension. The transfer quarterback was sharp and led the Wildcats to 43 points in their opener. Northwestern scored more than 30 only once last year, and the Wildcats are capable of surprising teams in the Big Ten.
Iowa was not good losing to Purdue in the opener, scoring only three points in the second half, and quarterback Spencer Petras delivered a shaky performance, completing only 22 of 39 passing attempts. He faces a more formidable defense in Week 9.
The Hawkeyes are going to a running back by-committee, and the offense needs more time to develop.
Things won’t come as easily for Northwestern as they did against Maryland, but the Wildcats can give Iowa all they can handle. They may win outright.
Indiana vs. Rutgers
Rutgers Scarlet Knights
This is a defensive matchup, between a couple suspect offenses, and I will grab double-digit points against an Indiana team ripe for a letdown.
The Hoosiers were held to 136 yards by Penn State, before they drove 75 yards to tie the game in the final minute. Indiana even added a couple turnovers but still managed to win in overtime, after an unbelievable sequence of events.
New coach Greg Schiano, who is in his second tour at Rutgers, is already making an impact. The Scarlet Knights forced seven turnovers and held Michigan State to 50 rushing yards on 39 attempts in their opener and led throughout in a 38-27 road win.
The Rutgers offense remains a liability, but the same applies to Indiana.
After it celebrated one of its biggest wins in school history, Indiana will be brought back down to earth in a low-scoring affair against Rutgers.