NCAA Football Betting – Florida vs Alabama Preview/Pick

NCAA Football Betting – Florida vs Alabama Preview/Pick A Florida Alabama betting preview isn’t technically the BCS title game; it’s the SEC title game. However, since the matchup pits the nation’s No. 1 and No. 2 teams against each other, many football fans feel that Saturday’s game is the real national title matchup since the loser probably won’t reach the big dance. Let’s break down the biggest game of the season to date.

(1) Florida Gators vs (2) Alabama Crimson Tide

Saturday, December 5, 4:00 p.m. ET

Favorite: Florida -5.5

There’s little questioning Florida’s status as big favorite in college football betting this week. The Gators are seeking a third national title in four seasons; quarterback Tim Tebow has a shot at a second Heisman Trophy; the Gators also beat Alabama in last year’s SEC title game 31-20. The Crimson Tide are clearly the underdogs.

How much does Florida’s offense revolve around Tebow? The big quarterback had 98 more carries than any running back on the team, amassing 796 yards and 13 scores. Tebow also threw for 17 touchdowns versus just four interceptions; not only does that stat reflect his versatility, it also shows that he’s not totally alone in Florida’s scheme. Riley Cooper and Aaron Hernandez have been reliable targets for him.

Florida more than backs up Tebow with the nation’s No. 1 defense. Returning every starter from their 2008 championship season, the Gators are a force at every position. Linebacker Brandon Spikes is the leader and must be at his best against a run-heavy Alabama squad. The “D” always gives the offense chances to win, never allowing more than 20 points in a game this season.

The Crimson Tide have to hope their line and running game trump the stingy Florida defense. Mark Ingram, also a Heisman candidate, had a banner season, rushing for 1,429 yards and 12 touchdowns. His effort in last week’s Iron Bowl was a major red flag, however; he ran for just 30 yards in 16 carries. Alabama won’t have a prayer if Ingram doesn’t make plays this Saturday. Quarterback Greg McIlroy is capable; he threw for two scores last week to pick up Ingram’s slack. But Florida’s defense is not Auburn’s; it wants to force McIlroy to make plays. McIlroy is more of a caretaker than a go-to guy and can’t carry his team to victory.

Alabama’s defense will work hard to keep the game close with its top-five rush and pass defenses and ability to force turnovers. But the Gators can win in more ways. Look for Florida to key on Ingram and force Alabama into a passing shootout. That plays into the Gators’ hands. Go with Florida in your weekend football picks.

Online sportsbook pick: Florida -5.5


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