LSU vs. Florida - 10/10/20 Early Look College Football GOY Pick, Odds, and Prediction
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LSU Tigers (0-0) at Florida Gators (0-0)
College Football: Saturday, October 10, 2020 (Florida Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium)
The Line: Florida Gators -3.5
The LSU Tigers and the Florida Gators meet Saturday, October 10 in college football action from Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.
LSU had a phenomenal campaign in 2019, going undefeated at 15-0 with an SEC Championship Game win over Georgia 37-10. The Tigers then took out Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl 63-28 and Clemson in the CFP National Championship 42-25. As for Florida, they had a great season themselves with an 11-2 overall record and a 6-2 mark in the SEC. The Gators earned an invite to the Orange Bowl, where they beat Virginia 36-28. Check back all season long for free college football picks and college football predictions at Sports Chat Place.
Let’s take a closer look at both teams and see if we can get an idea of how things might play out when the Tigers meet the Gators on October 10.
There’s really not much to complain about when it comes to LSU’s 2019 season. The Tigers were initially ranked at No. 6 overall and No. 2 in the SEC West in the preseason AP Poll, but after dispatching Alabama on November 9 LSU finally made their way to that No. 1 overall ranking. The Tigers’ schedule last year was no joke, and an undefeated campaign was a testament to how spectacular that team was. Moving on to 2020, things will be slightly different for LSU. Head coach Ed Orgeron enters his fourth full year at the helm, and he’s got to deal with a ton of turnover from last year, starting with departed QB Joe Burrow and his 60 pass TDs. Myles Brennan will take over in that spot this season; he went 24-of-40 passing for 353 yards in 2019. Having talented receivers like Ja’Marr Chase and Terrace Marshall at his disposal will certainly help, but that 2019 squad set a very, very high bar.
Over on the Florida side, they finished just one game behind Georgia in the East Division last season, caused by a 24-17 head-to-head loss versus the Bulldogs on November 2. Outside of that, the Gators’ only blemish on the 2019 campaign was a 42-28 loss at LSU in mid-October. It was a really strong season, especially when you consider the difficulty level of the SEC. In any case, 2020 brings Florida head coach Dan Mullen into his third season, and with QB Kyle Trask at the helm again the team will be gunning for a division championship. The Gators do lose a few weapons to graduation and the NFL, but still retain key playmakers like Dameon Pierce and Miami transfer Lorenzo Lingard. Defensively, big names like Jonathan Greenard and David Reese are gone, but with some experienced players in an established system the turnover shouldn’t feel too bad. Florida is primed for big things this year.
Pick: I’m going with Florida. I would have felt strange making this pick last year (and the line obviously would have been different) but 2020 seems like a season where all the stars could align for the Gators. With Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa and Jake Fromm all gone for the NFL, Trask is now the SEC’s top returning quarterback. The spotlight is on, and the stage is set to potentially see double-digit wins from this team again.
As for LSU, they’re bound to take a step back—there’s really nowhere else to go after perfection—but will still field a very strong team and will still be in contention for the national title. As an early-look pick however, I feel a little more comfortable with the Gators on paper.