Brett McMurphy’s Musings and College Football Picks for Week 8

What I’m wondering while waiting for this weekend’s games…

Has a country ever promoted someone for the Heisman Trophy? Not until this week.

Technically, it wasn’t Canada promoting Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard for the Heisman, but the next greatest thing: “The Great One,” Wayne Gretzky.

The Hall of Famer posted a video on the Edmonton Oilers’ Twitter feed:

“Hi Chuba this is Wayne Gretzky and I just wanted to pass on a congratulations from everyone in Edmonton. We’re all really proud of you. Keep going.”

Hubbard, who was born in Edmonton, attended Bev Facey Community High School and played Canadian football rules.

Despite playing in Canada, Hubbard drew a great deal of interest from the top college football programs in the United States. Hubbard had 24 scholarship offers but ultimately chose Oklahoma State over – among others – Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Miami, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas A&M, the Stillwater News-Press reported.

Hubbard leads the nation in rushing (1,094 yards) and became the second-fastest to crack the 1,000-yard mark at Oklahoma State, trailing only Heisman winner Barry Sanders, who did it in five games in his NCAA record season in 1987.

Hubbard has a healthy lead over Ohio State’s J.K. Dobbins (826 yards) and Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor (825), who currently rank second and third nationally. Hubbard also is second nationally with 13 TD rushing, one fewer than Taylor.

Despite his numbers and the recent push from Gretzky and the NHL’s Oilers for Hubbard for the Heisman, bookmakers in the states aren’t as optimistic.

Hubbard is not included among the only five contenders listed by BetOnline. The only Heisman candidates the website lists are Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa (4-to-7), LSU QB Joe Burrow (15-to-4), Oklahoma QB Jalen Hurts (9-to-2), Ohio State QB Justin Fields (10-to-1) and Wisconsin RB Jonathan Taylor (10-to-1).

However, Hubbard finally cracked the Westgate Superbook’s Heisman list this week with 80-to-1 odds to win. Hubbard has the eighth-lowest odds behind Tagovailoa (5-to-8), Burrow (7-to-2), Hurts (7-to-2), Fields (14-to-1), Taylor (20-to-1), Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence (30-to-1) and Texas QB Sam Ehlinger (40-to-1).

Coming off an 0-5 week, I promised it couldn’t get any worse and – surprise – it didn’t. A solid 3-2 week as I continue the climb back to .500.

Onto this week’s selections:

Oklahoma State -3.5 vs. Baylor
West Virginia +34 at Oklahoma
Penn State -9 vs. Michigan
Kansas State +3.5 vs. TCU
Florida -5 at South Carolina

Lock of the Week: Schlage Single Cylinder Deadbolt with Collins Trim

The Tote Board
Last week: 3-2
Year to date: 14-18-1

MORE: Which Power 5 Football Conference Has Been Most Competitive in 2019?