- Heather Dinich, ESPN Staff Writer
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I’m not going to brag, don’t worry. I won’t be redundant about how I went undefeated last week, picking all eight games correctly for an 8-0 record without any losses. That perfectly unblemished week boosted my season record to 24-6. If my math is correct, that’s a winning percentage of 80 percent. Since I’m on fire, I’ll give you another prediction -- that percentage will never last. Not in this league.
This week’s picks feature three conference games and an upset special:
Boston College 14, Virginia Tech 10: The Eagles are one of the best home teams in the conference, winning 10 of their past 11 dating back to 2008. BC has won two of the past three regular-season games. BC’s defense will be the difference in a low-scoring game.
Florida state 35, Wake Forest 14: The Deacs are reeling right now after their loss at Stanford and would have to beat Florida State in a shootout in order to win. A veteran quarterback beats a rookie starter, though, in a shootout, and odds are it doesn’t get that far.
FIU 17, Maryland 14: The Panthers lost two heartbreakers and are ready for their breakthrough game in this week’s upset special. FIU was leading Texas A&M 20-6 on the road in the fourth quarter and lost 19-14 to Rutgers. They’re due.
NC State 31, Georgia Tech 28: This was the toughest pick of the week, and usually, when I’m in doubt, I go with the home team, but this week I’ll go with the hot team. NC State’s defense has been solid on third downs, and Georgia Tech’s defense hasn’t done anything to lead me to believe it can slow down Russell Wilson.
Army 42, Duke 38: This isn’t last year’s Duke team. Something is wrong defensively, and the Blue Devils aren’t going to figure it out against the No. 7 rushing team in the country.
Miami 28, Pitt 27: The Hurricanes have already played in a tougher venue, and Ohio State’s defense is better than Pitt’s. The key for Miami is limiting their own mistakes and stopping Pitt’s big-play potential in both the running and passing game.
Rutgers 31, UNC 21: The NCAA saga never seems to end for North Carolina. The NCAA ruled two players -- Deunta Williams and Kendric Burney -- must miss games and repay benefits. While there is some closure, it’s far from over and remains a distraction.
Virginia 45, VMI 7: Mike London is 2-0 against VMI’s struggling program. It should be a tune-up game before opening conference play on Oct. 2 against Florida State. VMI has one of the worst rushing offenses in the FCS at 80 yards per game, and Virginia is holding opponents to just 15 points per game.
1dDavid M. Hale