Start/Bench—Week  8 

 

Start
Cooper Rush, QB-Central Michigan at Ball State
Rush has accounted for nine touchdowns in his previous two conference games and faces one of the worst defense in the MAC in Week 8, Ball State, who are giving up 35 points per game (35.3) and nearly 500 yards per game (491.4), so we expect the junior quarterback to top 300 yards passing for a third consecutive week.
 
Joe Mixon, RB-Oklahoma vs Texas Tech
Mixon received a season-high 15 carries last week and cashed those in for 73 rushing yards and a score.  In fact, the redshirt freshman is probably a better fit in OC Lincoln Riley’s offense than running mate Samaje Perine.  This week, Oklahoma hosts Texas Tech, a matchup which should produce a wide-open aerial show and a lot of open space for Mixon.

 

Saquon Barkley, RB-Penn State at Maryland
Barkley has only played in two Big Ten games in his young career, but he has topped 190 yards rushing both times.  It’s a bit of a stretch to suggest that Barkley will top 200 yards rushing in Week 8, but he should be more than productive against a Maryland defense that is giving up 196.8 yards per game on the ground, 2nd-worst in the Big Ten.
 
LJ Scott, RB-Michigan State vs Indiana
Scott isn’t exactly churning out the yardage, but the freshman back has scored at least two touchdowns in three consecutive games and puts that streak on the line in Week 8 when the Spartans host Indiana.  The Hoosiers are giving up 170 yards per game on the ground and have given up 14 rushing touchdowns in 2015, which is tied for last in the Big Ten, and 4.9 yards per carry, which is worst in the Big Ten.

 

Kermit Whitfield, WR-Florida State at Georgia Tech
The 5’-7” junior receiver has provided some playmaking ability on the outside to complement running back Dalvin Cook.  Whitfield has caught nine passes in each of the previous two games for a total of 267 yards and has now scored in two of the Seminoles’ past three games. 

 

Jerico Richardson, WR-Nevada vs Hawaii
Richardson has caught at least six passes, 80 yards, and a touchdown in each of the Wolfpack’s last three games, which is the type of consistency that a lot of fantasy owners desire from a mid-tier receiver, so consider Richardson as a WR3 or FLEX option heading into Week 8 at home against Hawaii.

 

Zach Pascal, WR-Old Dominion at Florida International
Pascal caught eleven passes for 231 yards and a touchdown last week against Charlotte when the Monarchs made the switch at quarterback to junior David Washington, who finished the game with 365 passing yards.  Old Dominion will alter their play calling to suit the dual-threat ability of Washington, but it was very apparent last week that he and Pascal have a nice chemistry in the passing game.
 

  

Bench
Dane Evans, QB-Tulsa vs Memphis  
Since his four-TD performance against Oklahoma in Week 3, Evans has only accounted for three scores in Tulsa’s previous three games.  Evans is already without his best receiver, Keevan Lucas, and now  freshman QB Chad President is stealing snaps out of the ‘wildcat’ formation, which further reduces Evans’ fantasy potential headed into a Week 8 matchup against Memphis.
 
Joshua Dobbs, QB-Tennessee at Alabama
In Tennessee’s win over Georgia two weeks ago, Dobbs became just the third SEC quarterback in the last 15 years to pass for 300 yards and run for 100 yards in the same game.  However, college fantasy football is all about playing the matchups and we must warn Dobbs’ owners that he only accounted for one touchdown in the previous two starts against Florida and Arkansas before the historic performance he had against the Bulldogs.

 

Anu Solomon, QB-Arizona vs Washington State
Coach Rodriguez has let it be known that we can expect to see both Jerrard Randall and Anu Solomon against the Cougars on Saturday, so if Solomon’s snap count is reduced, so will his fantasy potential in Week 8.
 
Jalen Hurd, RB-Tennessee at Alabama
Hurd topped 100 yards in three of Tennessee’s first four games and accounted for eight touchdowns during that span, but he failed to score or top 90 yards in each of his previous two games and that trend could continue this week when the Volunteers travel to Alabama and face one of the nation’s top defenses.
 
Chris Hairston, RB-East Carolina vs Temple
Hairston has been on a nice run, accounting for 15-plus fantasy points in three consecutive weeks, but in Week 8 the Pirates host Temple, who has the eighth-best rushing defense in the FBS.  The Owls’ defense has held the opposing teams’ leading rusher to fewer than 80 yards in five of six games.

 

Anthony Wales, RB-Wstern Kentucky at LSU
We find it difficult to say that an important piece to the Hilltoppers’ offense is a bad play, but Wales just may not be the safest play.  Wales carries more value in PPR leagues because LSU should neutralize him on the ground, as the Tigers have not allowed an opposing back to rush for more than 70 yards so far this year. 
 

 

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