No. 17 Florida Gators (4-1 SU, 2-3 ATS) vs. No. 10 LSU Tigers (5-1 SU, 3-2-1 ATS)
College Football Week 7
Date and Time: Saturday October 12th, 2013. 3:30PM Eastern
Where: Tiger Stadium Baton Rouge, L.A.
by Jay, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: UF +7/LSU -7
Over/Under Total: OFF
SEC rivals collide in the Bayou this Saturday when the no. 17 Florida
Gators travel to Death Valley to meet the no. 10 LSU Tigers
in an important conference match-up. The Tigers bounced back from their
loss to Georgia with a 59-26 win over Mississippi State last week to move
to 5-1 on the season. Still that mark in the loss column means that Louisiana St.
cannot afford any more setbacks in order to keep their SEC Championship
hopes alive as a big showdown with Alabama looms on the horizon in early
Meanwhile Will Muschamp’s Florida Gators are in a similar scenario. The Gators who are currently 4-1 on the season have marquee games with no. 6 Georgia and no. 13 South Carolina still remaining on their schedule to decide the SEC Eastern Division. Therefore while a loss would not end their chances to capture the SEC Eastern crown, it would certainly knock the Gators out of the driver’s seat.
The Gators will enter Death Valley as 7 point underdogs this Saturday making it the largest margin Florida has been underdogs since their 2011 meeting with LSU. However it may be worth noting that the Gators were also small 3 point dogs to LSU last season but pulled out a mild 14-6 upset in Gainesville. For that to happen again this year, the Gators are going to need another huge performance on the defensive side of the football.
The good news for Florida fans is that the Gators defense has been outstanding thus far. Florida has given up just 12.2 points per game which is the 4th best average in the FBS. The downside to those defensive statistics is that Florida has yet to play a highly rated offense to validate those numbers. Furthermore, Florida has had their own struggles on offense averaging just 25 points (93rd in NCAA) and 393 total yards (86th in NCAA) per game.
In the past two outings, junior quarterback Tyler Murphy has posted some promising performances in place of Jeff Driskel who was lost for the year with a broken fibula. However Murphy has given a spark to the offense by completing 31 of 40 passing for 396 yards with 4 touchdowns and just 1 pick in the last two games. With a successful passing game, the Gators could really be a force to be reckoned with if you throw in their established running game into the mix behind tailbacks Matt Jones and Mack Brown. Sure questions still linger over Florida’s offense but there has been some hope as well and perhaps we will find out much more when the Gators line up across from a talented LSU defense.
Of course when you think of Louisiana State University most would mention their historical strong
defenses, right? Well this year LSU has been much more explosive on the
offensive side of the ball with QB Zach Mettenberger and running back Jeremy
Hill. Mettenberger is having an incredible season completing 68% passing
for 1,738 yards with 15 touchdowns and just 2 picks. The senior quarterback,
along with Hill (593 rush yards, 9 touchdowns) has transformed LSU’s offense
from a heavily favored power rushing attack into a balanced quick striking
offense. On the year LSU has averaged 45.5 points per game; the 9th best
mark in college football. If LSU can keep up a similar offensive pace this
week, I do not believe Florida has the weapons on offense to keep up in
a high scoring game. Obviously Florida has one of the most talented defensive
units that LSU will face all season but it will be extremely interesting
to see if they have an answer for LSU’s weapons on offense.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: The Gators may have pulled off an upset a year ago but they have to go to Death Valley this Saturday where the Tigers are 16-1 SU in the last 3 years down in Baton Rouge. Florida’s defense has allowed their offense to cruise in recent weeks by shutting down a few stagnant offenses in Kentucky, Arkansas, and even Tennessee. That scenario will be flipped this Saturday as I expect LSU to get out front and put pressure on Florida as they have to play from behind. Look for the Tigers to roll in a surprising blowout. Take LSU -7!
Additional College Football Betting Previews