College Football Week 1 Picks: Toledo Rockets vs. Florida Gators
Toledo Rockets vs. No. 10 Florida Gators
Saturday, 8/31/13, 12:20 PM EST, TV: ESPN3
Opening Point Spread: Florida -23
Current Betting Line: Florida -24
Opening Total: 57.5
Current Total: 57.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Toledo is counting on a veteran offense and young but talented defense to match up with a Florida squad that is brimming with talent. The Rockets return four All-MAC players on offense, including senior running back David Fluellen, who gained 1,498 yards during the 2012 campaign. Senior quarterback Terrance Owens is a player to watch, as he gets the offense going with his arm and feet—throwing for 2,707 yards and running for 395 more a season ago. Toledo is 7-3 as underdogs the last two-plus seasons, which is important to consider when making your college football expert picks Saturday.
The Rockets are 7-12 all time against Top 25 teams, which can’t be ignored when looking over the college football odds page. Toledo is definitely a program on the rise, as it has played in bowl games in each of the past three seasons. The program was picked to finish second in the Mid-American Conference’s West division by the league’s media contingent. All six of the school’s first-team conference selections will dress up for another year on campus in 2013.
Florida finished 2012 with an 11-2 record and tied for the SEC Eastern Division crown with a 7-1 mark in conference, as it returns 41 letterwinners and 10 starters, with the group being led by second-year starting quarterback Jeff Driskel. The Gators have compiled a 79-27 all-time record in season openers, including a 64-6 mark when playing in Gainesville. The program has outscored opponents by a combined 303-52 margin in its last seven season openers.
The Gators were one of the best teams in the nation during the second half a season ago, as they outscored opponents by a dominating 205-87 margin, including 128-32 in the fourth quarter. Florida’s .878 winning percentage at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium since 1990 is tops in the nation—sitting just above the Nebraska Cornhuskers in that particular category. Over that period of time, the Gators have had an average outcome of producing a 24.3-point win.
Sports bettors will likely back the Rockets in this spot, as they’ve gone 2-6 ATS in their last eight games against MAC opponents.
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