Week 3 of college football action will feature one of the biggest conference rivalries/matchups in the whole sport with Alabama versus Florida.
The SEC opener for both the Gators and Crimson Tide is a rematch of last year’s conference title game, one in which Alabama won 52-46 in an entertaining back-and-forth affair.
#11 Florida and head coach Dan Mullen are definitely looking to earn a statement victory in this matchup against #1 Alabama and for revenge from last year’s defeat.
This will be Alabama’s toughest test so far this year after handling their first two opponents, Mercer and the University of Miami.
Florida has also looked sharp, defeating two in-state opponents in FAU and USF.
The game will kickoff at 3:30 pm ET on Saturday afternoon from Gainesville, with Alabama being a 14.5 point favorite.
Alabama Keys to Success
Bryce Young has only made two starts in his young college career, but boy does he look ready for the big stage and the bright lights.
Young torched Miami for 344 yards and four touchdowns over 27 completions in the blowout opener and connected on 19 throws for 227 yards and three scores in the easy win/rest over Mercer last Saturday.
However, Saturday afternoon will be his first game on the road, and Gainesville is not the easiest of places to play.
At receiver, the production has been there for John Metchie III, but there has been help from Ohio State transfer Jameson Williams.
Defensively, you better hope to pass the ball versus Bama cause they will not let you run the rock. Alabama has only allowed one team in the last two years to top 150 rushing yards in a game. Their defensive line is massive and clogs up holes but can also pressure the quarterback.
Florida Keys to Success
Despite the loss of Kyle Trask and Kyle Pitts to the NFL, the Florida Gators are still putting up 38.5 points per game behind the mind of coach Dan Mullen.
Florida has a few questions about what they should do at QB, and that decision remains to be determined. Both Emory Jones and Anthony Richardson have gotten playing time this season and have both shown they are able to contribute to the offense, but is it smart to split their time against the best team in the country?
What they both can do well is use their feet on the ground, something that has led Florida to the #1 rushing offense through 2 weeks.
The two quarterbacks top the offense that averages 381.5 yards per game on the ground in rushing output so far, with backs Malik Davis, Dameon Pierce, Demarkcus Bowman, and Nay’Quan Wright all likely to see time on Saturday.
Defensively, they will need to contain Metchie and Williams on the outside and get to Bryce Young.
Alabama is Alabama. While I do think this will be a close game, there is just so much that they can do to burn you and pick you apart offensively, and they will be able to slow Florida’s run game down significantly because that is what they do best.
Florida has their shot this game to prove that they can compete with the top tier in college football this season, but I don’t believe they will get the outcome they are looking for.
However, since I do believe that this game will be close, I am much more comfortable betting the total in this game at over 60. When both of these teams combined for nearly 100 points last year, this total is extremely low. Take the over.
Final Pick: Over 60 (-110)
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