Date/Time: September 21st, 3:30 PM ET
Spread: Florida -16
Here at Bang the Book, we are always keeping our eyes open for the best games to bet on each and every week. Of all of the games on the Week 4 docket, the one we are zeroing in on is the game where the Florida Gators host the Tennessee Volunteers at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, September 21st.
Oh, oddsmakers, how you have screwed this one up! We’re a perfect 3-0 ATS in our college football bets of the week, and we see this week as no exception whatsoever. The Volunteers are going to be heading on the road for the second straight week, this time to Gainesville to take on the Gators in the Swamp.
The first item of note is the schedule. The Gators were off last week, and they are coming off of a pair of ugly offensive games to start the season against the Toledo Rockets and the Miami Hurricanes. The loss to Miami was unexpected, and in a game where the defense did just about everything right, the offense couldn’t pick up the slack. Heck, if QB Jeff Driskel doesn’t make some boneheaded decisions in the red zone, the Gators are a Top 10 ranked team right now at 2-0 with a real chance of winning the National Championship.
Meanwhile, the Volunteers had to fly all the way to Eugene to take on the Oregon Ducks last week, and preparing for that offense can wreck not just the week that you’re at Autzen Stadium, but the next week as well. This is a totally different mindset this week playing against a UF team that is going to be playing old school, smash mouth SEC football instead of the run and gun of the read option with Oregon.
Most are under the assumption that Florida is going to be in some trouble laying more than two touchdowns in this game just based upon what the offense has done in these first two outings. Now, it’s true that Driskel and the gang looked like garbage outside of the first drive against Toledo and did nothing until the very end of the game against Miami, but the yardage totals are there. The Gators can move the ball, but they have made far too many mistakes when they have gotten down close to capitalize.
The argument could be made that the Volunteers are a team that can force a lot of turnovers defensively, but we don’t see it against some of the best teams in the land. Forcing seven turnovers against the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers at home is a lot different than forcing any turnovers at all in the Swamp on the road against the Gators.
Now let’s look at some raw stats between these two teams and see if you can tell the difference between the two. One of these teams averages 382 yards per game and ranks 116th in the nation in passing. The other team is good for 414 yards per game but ranks 74th in the land in passing. The former is Tennessee, the latter is Florida. It’s not so easy to discern these two offenses in the end, is it?
In the end, the Gators have the far better of these two teams, and playing at home is going to really help out a ton, as is coming off of that loss. QB Justin Worley had a tough time last week in Eugene, and he is going to have a tougher time this week against a much better defense.
Florida is 8-0 SU and 5-2-1 ATS in the last eight games in this series, including going on the road last year and winning by 17 against a much better UT team. Tennessee has been held under 300 total yards by Florida in seven of the last eight seasons that these two have met, and the Florida offense, for the most part, has done what it has wanted to do. Last season, the Gators racked up 555 yards in the win, and Driskel had one of the best games of his collegiate career.
All signs point towards the orange and blue in this one, and we have no doubt that the Gators are winning this one by at least three touchdowns on Saturday.
Week 4 College Football Pick of the Week: Florida Gators -16
Andrew Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.