Florida is hoping for a better home showing this weekend than it had last time around. The Gators gave Alabama a tough second-half challenge, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the No. 1 team in the country. Saturday’s game against Tennessee, however, should present a much more manageable challenge.
It’s been a tough start to the Josh Heupel era in Tennessee. Though the run game and defense have been solid, the team so far hasn’t been able to find an answer in the passing game despite both Joe Milton III and Hendon Hooker seeing significant playing time so far. The Volunteers are 2-1, and the loss came at home to a Pittsburgh team that lost to Western Michigan the following game.
The Gators are heavy favorites in this game, and they’re well-liked by Bill Connelly’s SP+ analytics system, in which they rank No. 8. But the SP+ is actually fairly optimistic about the Vols, and it thinks they will give Florida a closer game than some expect.
The system predicts a 34-21 win for Florida on Saturday, which would be closer than the 19.5-point spread currently listed by Tipico Sportsbook. Last year, the Gators defeated UT 31-19, but that was the closest margin under coach Dan Mullen, as UF won by 16 points and 31 points in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
SP+ gives Florida a 77% chance to win on Saturday, and it doesn’t predict that the game will hit a 63-point over/under.
Here are the full SP+ picks for the week.
😃💵 WEEK 4 SP+ PICKS 😤💪
Wisconsin 27, ND 22
A&M 30, Arkansas 20
Clemson 31 (gulp), NC St 19
ISU 27, Baylor 22
Mich St 27, Neb 24
OSU 28, K-State 25
UCLA 37, Stanford 26
Texas 34, Tech 25
USC 40, Ore St 25
67% ATS last week, which means 67% ATS for EVERY FUTURE WEEK TOO!!!1! pic.twitter.com/SOU2JjOIxx
— Bill Connelly (@ESPN_BillC) September 22, 2021
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