(1-11, 5-7 ATS in 2009)
(13-1, 7-6 ATS in 2009)
The post Tim Tebow era finally gets started in Gainesville on Saturday afternoon, as the Florida Gators open up their NCAA football betting season with what should be a romp in the Swamp against the Miami Redhawks.
Last season was simply a disaster for the Redhawks. They proved to be a relatively chippy team in terms of sticking in front of the college football odds, but it only ended up resulting in a 1-11 SU record. The good news is that QB Zac Dysert is back once again for his second season. Dysert did complete 61.6 percent of his passes for 2,611 yards in spite of the fact that he didn’t start all 12 games for Miami, but his 16 INTs were just too many. However, we must remember that this was a freshman last year, and there were signs of promise. Dysert also led the team in touchdowns with five. The big problem was the ground game, which didn’t have a single person rack up even 300 yards on the year. If you aren’t going to have a well balanced attack against the Gators, you’re going to be in a boatload of trouble, regardless of whether No. 15 is under center or not. The Redhawks did boast the 27th best pass defense in the nation last year, but there was no secret that this was a unit that struggled, as it allowed 34.2 points per game.
The good news for HC Urban Meyer is that he has always had one of the deepest teams in the country. The bad news is that that depth has been challenged by the departure of a number of different players, most of which were drafted in the first three rounds of the NFL Draft this past year. All eyes will be on QB John Brantley, who is going to be the man with the dubious task of trying to replace the almighty Tebow. Brantley has been known as the better pure passer of the two UF signal callers, and he proved it in limited action last year. The new quarterback for the blue and orange completed 36-of-48 passes for 410 yards with seven scores and more importantly, no INTs. No, Brantley isn’t the same type of mobile QB as Tebow is, but he can do enough with his legs to keep this offense going. Watch for RBs Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey to be explosive, particularly against a defense that has been so porous in past years.
Florida historically makes mincemeat out of competitors like this, and this should be no exception. The oddsmakers know that the Gators should be favored by at least six, if not seven TDs in this one, as they can basically name the final score. However, those who made the lines are hoping that you fall into PTTS: Post Tim Tebow Syndrome. Don’t fall for the trick. Miami is a terrible team. If Florida wants to cover this spread, it will. With the way that the Gators are out to get revenge from last season’s one blunder, don’t be shocked to see them win this one by at least 50.
Selection: Florida Gators -35