Game of the Year for LSU Again?
One of the bigger shockers for NCAAF picks last season was when the LSU Tigers stunned then #6 Florida 37-34 in week 15 even though UF was a -24 point favorite in betting odds. That sparked a three-game losing streak for the Gators to close out the year which included a defeat to Alabama in the SEC title game and falling to Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl.
Basically, the Gators would be wise not to overlook LSU in this week 7 matchup even though they are -11 favorites on BetOnline and -11.5 at BetUS. UF was 9-0 heading into last year’s contest, and even though they have already suffered a couple of losses this season the Gators are still #20 in the AP Top 25. LSU is 3-3, and once again looking for the upset.
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Plenty of Optimism for Florida Still
The Gators are 4-2, and although they were 9-0 heading into the LSU game last season the start to 2021 shouldn’t be considered a disappointment. The total margin in the Gators’ two defeats is 9 points, which includes a 31-29 loss to then #1 Alabama and falling 20-13 at Kentucky who is up to #11 in the country currently.
Florida is a double-digit favorite for this week’s NCAAF picks as they play an LSU team that just took their own beating against Kentucky falling 42-21 last Saturday. The radar is up for Dan Mullen’s team against LSU this season, but they also don’t have Kyle Trask who threw for 474 yards in last season’s loss.
The Gators also have to go on the road to Baton Rouge this week, and they’ve played four of their six games at home this season. Florida scored a 42-20 win at USF as -29 point favorites and also lost 20-13 in Kentucky in week five as -7.5 favorites. UF had won 16 straight in Lexington prior to that defeat.
Is there still value on Florida to win this one by a dozen points for this week’s sports betting picks? The Gators do have the SEC’s #2 offense in total yards (504.2) which is also #10 in the country. Florida’s 274 ypg on the ground is #3 in the entire nation and LSU’s defense is 4th worst in the conference.
Orgeron’s Job in Jeopardy?
LSU’s 2019 championship season feels like it was about a decade ago after LSU was just 5-5 last season and off to another mediocre start in 2021 with a 3-3 record. Fans in Baton Rouge have come to expect greatness because there are already talks about coach Ed Orgeron’s job is in jeopardy if the Tigers were to lose to Florida in this spot even as +11.5 underdogs on the betting odds.
LSU is on a two-game losing streak but those defeats have come 24-19 against then #22 Auburn and then 42-21 last time out against undefeated Kentucky. Those are two good opponents, but also games LSU has become accustomed to winning in NCAAF picks over the last few years.
The Tigers’ goal on Saturday is going to be to throw the ball as Max Johnson has 17 TD to 4 INT on the season. LSU’s 296 pass yards/game rank 22nd in the country and Johnson’s 3 TDs in last year’s meeting with Florida were key to getting the win. Florida’s pass defense is 6th best in the SEC.
Florida at LSU Pick
It doesn’t seem like these betting odds should favor the Gators by double-digit points, maybe only a TD or so in this matchup between SEC foes. Florida has a knack for playing it close in these types of games and it’s not out of the realm of possibility that LSU could take this one outright.
Pick: LSU +11.5