College Football Pick
After a couple difficult road Games for Florida, they’re back at home for most of October until playing Georgia at the end of the month. Despite the loss at Tennessee, the Gators know it’s far too early to give up on the season, especially in the unpredictable SEC East. On the other side of the field is an LSU team that already hasn’t lived up to preseason expectations as the No. 5 team in the country.
Early Monday, this Game is off the board in most places due to inuries on both sides. Betonline however, has LSU -1
When these teams met last year, it was kind of a scoring fest, which isn’t something you’d expect. En route to a 35-28 win, LSU scored 28 points in the second quarter and never looked back. It was a similar let down for Florida in what we saw against Tennessee a couple weeks ago. Now at home, the Gators will try and play a full Four quarters against an LSU team still looking for an identity under interim head coach Ed Orgeron, formerly at USC and Ole Miss.
The Tigers are loaded with talent, everyone knows that, it’s just about putting it all together. They couldn’t in a loss to Wisconsin in the opener and still didn’t in a win against Mississippi State. The loss at Auburn was the final straw for Les Miles with the offense only scoring 13 points. The ground-and-pound offensive approach just wasn’t getting it done, even with a talent like Leonard Fournette.
But how much will Orgeron actually change when Fournette is in the backfield with a limited quarterback in Danny Etling? Sure, the jury is still out on Etling, although he finished with a 0-7 record as a freshman at Purdue. In truth, his numbers aren’t much better from his time with the Boilermakers, completing close to 55% of his passes. But maybe in a different offensive system, things will be different for him. Or maybe not.
Etling gets the task of playing a Florida defense this week that has one of the better secondaries in the conference. They were beaten multiple times against the Volunteers, but Etling isn’t at the level of Joshua Dobbs. So the story remains the same for the Tigers here as it was a year ago. They’ll run through Fournette as much as possible. That worked last season when Fournette carried the ball 31 times for 180 yards and two touchdowns. With that working in LSU’s favor as well as a defensive front that held Florida to 55 total yards rushing, that was all they needed.
But there’s more hope for the Gators this time around. Back at home, they’ll be hyped to get back and show their fans why they can make the SEC title Game. LUke Del Rio is battling injury, but he should be good to go. Even so, Austin Appleby isn’t much of a drop off. Although, it would be fun to see two former Purdue QBs going head-to-head in an SEC Game.
The goal for the Gators in this Game will be to find some kind of rushing attack, which was non-existent last season. Jordan SCarlett and Mark Thompson have split most of the work so far and it’ll be up to them to average more than two yards per carry.
LSU may be more talented, but playing in Gainesville, the Gators get the edge against a Tigers team that likely won’t be led by Orgeron in the near future.
Our Pick – Triple Revenge for the Gators. Florida lost the last 3 in this series, all close Games. With the firing of Les Miles and the uncertainty at LSU, thi would seem to be the perfect time for Florida to get back in the win column in this series. Florida +1