Teams are showing their true identities in the college football world.

Just look at Michigan for instance. Everyone dismissed the Wolverines after an opening week loss to Notre Dame. Since then, the Wolverines have dismantled their schedule, and oh by the way, the Irish aren’t bad.

Teams are hitting their stride, so the value in spreads should be high. Here’s the week 8 college football picks featuring six winners for the weekend.

Overall: 18-18 ATS

Tulsa at Arkansas (-7)

Teams can improve.

That’s always the thing that has tripped me up in the past. Bad outings early in the season shouldn’t define a team. Sometimes, improvements happen.

And that’s the case with the Razorbacks.

Arkansas has lost plenty of bad games this season, but in recent weeks, they’ve shown that things are starting to click. They should have beaten Mississippi last week and the offense put up 31 points against Alabama two weeks ago, not an easy chore.

In the last three weeks, Arkansas is averaging 7.8 yards per play, up from its season average of 6.3. Tulsa, meanwhile, is averaging just 4.4 yards per play, and allowing 5.8. Arkansas is improving and has the better team. Don’t worry about giving up seven points. — Go Chalk with Arkansas

The Virginia Cavaliers should be a solid pick in the week 8 college football picks. Flickr/ Blaha

Virginia (+7) at Duke

Duke doesn’t move the ball well enough to be considered a touchdown favorite against a conference team.

The Blue Devils are averaging just 5.1 yards per play, and that number is decreasing. Duke is moving the ball at just 4.8 yards per play in the last three weeks.

Virginia, on the other hand, has quietly won three of four games, including an upset against Miami last week. The offense is averaging 5.6 yards per play this season, and the defense appears improved.

This game will be closer than the touchdown spread, so go with Virginia. — Go Against The Chalk with Virginia

Memphis (+10) at Missouri

I understand that Missouri is the big, bad SEC team, and Memphis is just an also-ran in college football.

But I just don’t see this as being a double-digit game.

Memphis isn’t bad. They move the ball at a high clip, averaging the third-most yards per play in college football. The defense isn’t great, but still ranks 54th in the country.

Missouri just hasn’t looked as good as I anticipated before the season began. Close losses have defined them, and the defense can’t get off the field. Missouri allows 6.4 yards per play, ranking 109th in college football.

It would be easy for Missouri to look over this game, so I’d back Memphis. — Go Against The Chalk with Memphis

Oregon at Washington State (-3)

Washington State is good.

On both sides of the ball, the Cougars are competitive. That’s why we shouldn’t cringe as the Cougars are favored against the Ducks.

Washington State ranks in the top-25 in yards per play and yards per play allowed.

Oregon ranks outside that realm for both sides of the ball, with the defense ranking 68th. The Cougars have a legitimate home-field advantage and that should come into play against an Oregon team coming off an emotional victory last week against Washington. — Go Chalk with Washington State

USC (+7) at Utah

I’m starting to buy into USC.

At first, I thought the win against Washington State was a fluke. The Cougars led throughout and the Trojans were able to come up with a late win.

Maybe it was the start of something better for the Trojans. USC has looked good on the defensive side of the ball in recent weeks, limiting Colorado last week to 20 points, and lowering their yards per play average to 4.4 in the last three weeks.

The Trojans are moving the ball with confidence on the offensive side of the ball, so I’m curious why the Utes are getting so much love. — Go Against the Chalk with USC

Arizona at UCLA (-8)

Watch out, here comes Chip Kelly.

After being blown out by Colorado three weeks ago, the Bruins have pieced together two solid outings, with a close loss to Washington and a blowout win against California.

Kelly is one of my favorite head coaches for college football, so it was only a matter of time before the ball started to get rolling for UCLA. As mentioned before, teams improve as the season progresses, and the Bruins should fit that mold.

The offense is getting smoother and the defense has played OK in recent weeks. That’s enough to blow out the Wildcats. — Go Chalk with UCLA

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