Kentucky vs. (14) Florida
Time: 12:20 PM EST Sat
Spread: Fla -23
Betting Odds from Bovada
Kentucky lost an overtime two point conversion by Western Kentucky in a game in which they were stunned on their home field. Joker Phillips wouldn’t reveal what he said to his squad following the game, saying only that “That’s our business.”
Many are thinking Phillips may now be on the hot seat, after eding a 19 game Wildcat over Western win streak that dated all the way back to 2004. The fans are no longer standing behind Phillips and this week isn’t going to help his cause at all, as college football oddsmakers have set the line 23 points in the Florida Gators’ favor.
The crowd in Lexington on Saturday night was only just under 54k and it was the smallest since the final home game of the 2006 season and only a bit more than the 48k that showed up for the 2012 home opener against Kent State. Wildcat fans are giving up on Phillips, and change is likely immanent.
Willie Taggert of Western took a swipe at Kentucky and said “WKU red is the new blue.” It was a low blow, but Phillips is about to lose his job, so why not kick him while he’s down, right?
Phillips only said “I respect Willie…but I’m not going to talk about another program or have our kids run their mouth and disrespect them…”
Wildcats betting trends:
UK is 5-0 ATS in their last 5 following an SU loss, 5-0 ATS in their last 5 following an ATS win, 4-0 ATS in their last 4 after accumulating less than 100 yards rushing in previous game, 0-4 ATS in their last 4 after accumulating 280+ yards passing, 2-8 ATS in their last 10 on the road.
Florida shot up from No. 18 to No. 14 after defeating No. 23 Tennessee on their home field, by 17 points last week. Jake Driskel threw two TD passes and Troy Burton ran for two TDs and the Gators scored the final 24 points of the game. They’ve now won eight straight against the Volunteers and Gators coach Will Muschamp has been impressed with his squad, saying there is a night and day difference in the team’s toughness.
Mike Gillislee ran for 115 yards of 336 total rushing yards for the Gators, who have out rushed Tennessee in every single game of the eight gas win streak. Burton carried it for 91 yards on only three carries, and QB Driskel ran for 81 yards, too, while also passing for 219 on a 70% completion ratio.
“We put a tremendous emphasis on winning in the court…wearing down our opponent,” Muschamp said.
Burton takes a lot of snaps out of the Wildcat formation and he ran for an 80 yard run in the game. Expect a lot of big play potential from the fullback, who has the speed to continue to make long TD runs.
“We have athletes all over the field, and we know if we keep getting them the ball…eventually the defense is gong to break…” Driskel said.
As 23 point favorites, college football oddsmakers expect the Wildcat defense to break early and often.
The Outlook from my season preview remains pertinent:
Muschamp knows Gators fans are impatient, but improvement should come this season. Athlon magazine predicts a modest improvement for the Gators, with a projected 8-4 record and a winning 5-3 record in the SEC. The season will end with a real bang as the Gators travel to their biggest rival Florida State on November 24th. The LSU game is on the 6th of October, and will serve a a great measuring stick for Muschamp to see how his team stacks up against a BCS contender and conference rival.
Improvement has come, Gators fans are about to watch their team get on the precipice of entering the top 10.
Florida Betting Trends:
Gators are 8-1-1 ATS in their last 10 September games, 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 after allowing less than 100 yards rushing in previous game, 15-6-1 ATS in their last 22 after accumulating more than 200 yards rushing, 3-9 ATS in their last 12 overall, and 0-5-1 ATs in their last 6 at home.
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