Florida Gators at South Carolina Gamecocks
Saturday, 11/12/11, 12:00 PM EST, TV: CBS
Opening Point Spread: South Carolina -3
Current Betting Line: South Carolina -3
Opening Total: 40
Current Total: 40.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Florida finally snapped a four-game losing streak by picking up a 26-21 win over the Vanderbilt Commodores last week as 13.5-point home favorites. The Gators were out-gained in all four of those previous games before finishing with a 33-yard advantage last time out. “We’re building our battle scars right now, we’ve got a bunch,” commented Gators coach Will Muschamp. Injuries are certainly starting to pile up, but quarterback John Brantley and running back Chris Rainey are both expected on the field Saturday. Florida is 0-3 ATS as an underdog of 3.5 to 10 points the last two-plus campaigns.
The Gators strength is certainly their defense, ranking 14th in the nation in allowing just 306.1 yards per game, while allowing opponent to convert just 30.3 percent of opportunities on third down. Florida’s running game was still able to rack up 225 yards on 39 rushes last week, led by speedster Jeff Demps, who ran for a career-high 158 yards and two touchdowns. Florida has won four of the last five meetings, but will be out for revenge due to last year’s 36-14 setback as 6.5-point home favorites.
South Carolina returns home after playing three consecutive games on the road, winning two of three, but falling 44-28 to the Arkansas Razorbacks as five-point underdogs last week. The Gamecocks have been playing without a full deck for a couple weeks now, especially with the loss of sophomore running back Marcus Lattimore. “We’ve won a bunch of games, so we’ve just got to look at where we are and try to get ready to play,” head coach Steve Spurrier stated. This is always an important matchup for him due to his previous time spent at Florida. South Carolina is 1-5 ATS as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points the last two-plus years.
The Gamecocks will be facing the Gators for the first time as a ranked team, while their opponent comes in unranked. South Carolina has a chance of posting a perfect 5-0 record against SEC East Division rivals with a win Saturday. Winning at home has been part of the culture surrounding the program under Spurrier, picking up victories in 17 of its last 20 home games in Columbia. Defensively, forcing turnovers has been the strength of that particular unit, ranking third in the country in gaining 27 opponents’ miscues.
Bettors will likely back the Gamecocks due to their 6-1 ATS mark following a loss, while the Gators are 0-4 ATS as a road underdog.
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