College Basketball Picks: Florida Gators vs. Tennessee Volunteers

Florida Gators at Tennessee Volunteers
Tuesday, 2/26/13, 9:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Florida -9.5
Current Betting Line:  Florida -9
Opening Total:  125
Current Total:  124.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Florida Gators are 7-3 ATS on the road this year
The Florida Gators are 7-3 ATS on the road this year

Florida bounced back from its fourth loss of the 2012-13 college basketball season, as it  picked up a 71-54 victory over the Arkansas Razorbacks as 17.5-point home favorites last Saturday.  The Gators have been battling through some injuries recently, as they prepare to play with Michael Frazier II, who suffered a concussion last time out.  “It’s been kind of some strange stuff that’s happened,” commented Gators coach Billy Donovan commented.  The program is 16-17 against Tennessee under Donovan, including a 5-11 mark when playing in Knoxville.  Florida is 7-3 ATS on the road this year, which is hard to ignore when looking over the college basketball betting lines Tuesday night.

The Gators are one of the top teams in the country due to their defense, as they rank third nationally in giving up just 53.1 points per game, which has led directly to their plus-20.6 scoring margin.  Florida has four probable starters averaging in double figures, with senior guard Mike Rosario leading the way, scoring 13.0 points per game.  He has upped his production during Southeastern Conference play, averaging 14.2 points per game.

Tennessee is riding a five-game win streak, which happens to be its longest of the season, as it comes off a 93-85 overtime victory over the Texas A&M Aggies as 2.5-point road underdogs last Saturday.  “We just found a way to get stops and make big plays,” stated Volunteers coach Cuonzo Martin.  The Volunteers are shooting better during conference play, as they rank third in the league in knocking down 45 percent of their shots.  On 10 separate occasions, an unranked Tennessee squad has beaten a Florida squad ranked in the AP top 25.  Tennessee is 8-2 ATS as an underdog this season.

The Volunteers are averaging 87.7 points over their last three games and have scored more than 80 points in three straight regular-season SEC games for the first time since January 2000.  Tennessee is 5-7 against AP top-25 teams under Martin’s direction, which is important to consider when making your college basketball picks against the spread.

Sports bettors will likely back the Volunteers due to the underdog going 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings in this series, while the Gators are 7-15 ATS in the last 22 overall meetings.

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