The University of Tennessee was the preseason favorite in online college football betting to win the SEC East Division, and the 14th-ranked Volunteers will take a huge step toward that with a victory over No. 19 Florida on Saturday. The Gators have won 11 straight in the series.
Here’s a Closer Look at the Florida at Tennessee Free Pick, Betting Lines & TV Info
Why Bet on Florida?
The Gators beat North Texas 32-0 last week but lost starting quarterback Luke Del Rio for a few weeks on a borderline low dirty hit. Del Rio left the game when defensive end Joshua Wheeler dove at the quarterback’s left knee while in the pocket and throwing downfield. Officials flagged Wheeler for a personal foul on the play.
UF’s defense set a school record by allowing just 53 total yards in the win The Gators got rushing touchdowns from four different backs and an early safety from its defensive front to ring up the program’s first shutout since blanking Eastern Michigan 65-0 to start the 2014 season.
Austin Appleby, a graduate transfer from Purdue, replaced Del Rio in the North Texas game and is the starter at Tennessee. Appleby, who played 17 games and made 11 starts in four seasons at Purdue, has 19 career touchdown passes and 19 interceptions. He also has nine touchdown runs. UF has two freshmen behind him.
Florida offensive guard Tyler Jordan will miss a second straight game as he recovers from eye surgery, and receiver Antonio Callaway is questionable after missing the North Texas game with a quadriceps injury. Callaway beat Tennessee last year on a long TD pass with under two minutes left.
Why Bet on Tennessee?
Tennessee didn’t play well last week in a 28-19 win over MAC school Ohio. Josh Malone caught two touchdown passes from Joshua Dobbs. Dobbs finished 19-of- 27 for 203 yards, two touchdowns and one interception and rushed 14 times for 59 yards and a score. Malone matched his career high with five catches for 69 yards and two touchdowns. The Vols (3-0) racked up 201 rushing yards. They extended their winning streak to nine games. It’s the longest UT win streak since the Vols won 14 in row, spanning a 13-0 1998 season to a victorious first game in 1999.
After allowing 184 rushing yards to Appalachian State and 186 to Virginia Tech, Tennessee held Ohio to 88. UT allowed the Bobcats to convert on only six of their 20 third down opportunities. An already-hobbling team lost three more players, including two senior captains, to injury against the Bobcats.
Senior cornerback/punt returner Cam Sutton injured his ankle in the first quarter and “will be out for an extended period of time,” according to Coach Butch Jones. Senior linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin injured his shoulder in the second quarter. Jones said the Vols “hopefully anticipate him back this week.”
Redshirt freshman linebacker Quart’e Sapp and redshirt senior defensive tackle Danny O’Brien were tended to by trainers on the field in the second quarter. Tennessee entered the game already short-handed defensively with middle linebacker Darrin Kirkland Jr. and defensive end LaTroy Lewis out with high ankle injuries. Kirkland is out this week again.
Tennessee is 19-26 all-time against Florida. Saturday’s game will mark the first meeting between the programs since 2012 in which both teams enter the game ranked and unbeaten. The Gators took a 28-27 win last year in Gainesville, Fla., coming back from 13-point deficit with 14 points in the final four minutes.
My Free Pick
Gators are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings in Tennessee.
Underdog is 3-0- 1 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
Road team is 6-1- 1 ATS in their last 8 meetings.
Over is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings.
Gators are 4-1- 1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
Vols end the losing streak in NCAA football betting and go under the total.