Week eight of the 2022 college football season is upon us. That means new expectations and excitement for programs from all angles. Across the landscape of college football, fans and programs alike are in a recovery mood from the previous week of the mayhem that many witnessed in awe of the beauty of college football. Heading into week eight on paper doesn’t seem as attractive as week zero did. However, this is college football where the unimaginable happens. On one side of thinking, college football is in the midst of the best season we have ever seen in history. On the other side of the college football spectrum, you have the traditionalist fans who despise the winds of change that have taken this season by the sails.
So, what can college football fans expect to see from week eight? Will there be chaos? What are the major storylines to monitor?
Fresh off a heartbreaking loss to Tennessee, Alabama comes into week eight at home against Mississippi State, looking to avenge a loss that should have never happened. Coach Saban talked about it a bit, but the bottom line, Alabama heads into week eight needing a win. However, Mississippi State also heads into week eight following a loss last Saturday to the hands of Kentucky, and the Bulldogs now have a must-win situation on Saturday night at Bryant Denny Stadium. In all likelihood, Alabama will win, and the Crimson Tide will get back on the road to the College Football Playoffs.
Second, do the LSU Tigers hold a chance against the undefeated Lane Train of Ole Miss? On the outside, looking inward, one would say no because of how Ole Miss has dominated its opponents to this point in the season. Ole Miss is a dangerously good football team with a lot of talent that could easily lead the program from Oxford, Mississippi, to another New Year Six Bowl Game or even a bid to the College Football Playoffs. However, the game is in Death Valley, and in the Magnolia Bowl, anything can happen. Ole Miss has the talent advantages to get the job done on Saturday afternoon, but this matchup has the makings to go down in the record books.
In Columbia, South Carolina, Shane Beamer and his Gamecocks get ready to host the Aggies of Texas A&M under the lights at Williams Brice Stadium. South Carolina is coming off a bye week where they enjoyed the spoils of a program-defining win road win over Kentucky. South Carolina has found its program with a record of 4-2, while their counterparts from College Station are looking to salvage the season after a disastrous start. For the entirety of the off-season, Texas A&M and its coaching staff croaked about how great the Aggies would be this season but have fallen on hard times with no hope of earning a bid to the College Football Playoffs. Spencer Rattler has found his grove for the Gamecocks, and Williams Brice Stadium will be rocking as the Gamecocks take the field on Saturday to plunder away the season from the Aggies.
Lastly, do Clark Lea and his Vanderbilt Commodores have it in them to go on the road to Missouri to earn their first SEC win of the season? Or will the hometown Missouri Tigers fend off the visitors from Nashville, Tennessee, for the Tigers’ first SEC win of the season? Honestly, looking at this matchup on the schedule is impossible to break down because of how bad both teams have been at times this season. A win for either program could go a long way into building a culture of winning at either place. It won’t be a pretty matchup on the field, but Vanderbilt and Missouri will entertain college football fans with their historically bad football on Saturday.