Florida basketball vs. Tennessee: Prediction, pick, line, spread, odds, watch live stream online

By Adam Silverstein
January 12, 2019
Florida basketball vs. Tennessee: Prediction, pick, line, spread, odds, watch live stream online

Wavering on respectability, Florida Gators basketball on Saturday has a chance to turn its entire season around when it hosts the No. 3 Tennessee Volunteers in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. Through Florida has put up fights against the best programs it has faced to date, it has basically lost nearly every game against better competition. And as of late, the Gators’ offense has been so terrible that it is simply not on par with the top 25 programs in the nation.

The Vols have also dominated this series all-time, though the teams have been relatively even in their last 10 meetings. What will go down on Saturday night? Let’s take a look at what you need to know and how you can watch Florida-Tennessee.

Viewing information

Date: Saturday, Jan. 12 | Time: 6 p.m. ET
Location: Stephen C. O’Connell Center — Gainesville, Florida (Capacity: 10,151)

TV: ESPN (Beth Mowins, Jimmy Dykes)
Live stream: WatchESPN.com | SiriusXM: 99/191/84 | Radio: WRUF, TuneIn

Live updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter

Tale of the tape

Florida Gators No. 3 Tennessee Vols
Head coach Mike White Rick Barnes
Record 9-5 (1-1 SEC) 13-1 (2-0 SEC)
Conference SEC SEC

Prediction and analysis

Spread: Florida +2.5 | O/U: 135

For a team that blows big leads and has struggled to score all year, this spread is a head-scratcher for Florida. In fact, Tennessee should probably be a 8-10 point favorite. The Gators do play better at home, but still, a line under three makes picking the Vols in this situation a no-brainer — especially considering UF has seen leads of 14 and 16 evaporate in consecutive games. More difficult to predict is the total considering how good a job Florida’s defense has done holding opponents far below their scoring averages. Let’s go with the over.

2018 records: ATS picks 1-0 | O/U picks 1-0

Projected starting five

PG Andrew Nembhard, freshman (6-foot-5, 191 pounds)
G KeVaughn Allen, senior (6-foot-2, 193 pounds)
G Noah Locke, freshman (6-foot-3, 205 pounds)
G/F Jalen Hudson, rs-senior (6-foot-6, 195 pounds)
F/C Kevarrius Hayes, senior (6-foot-9, 227 pounds)

Game notes

» Tennessee is 74-54 all-time against Florida, though the Gators have a 35-24 edge at home. The teams are 5-5 in their last 10 meetings with White 1-2 against UT since taking over the UF program (1-0 at home).
» It will be the first time since 2014 that the teams play twice in a single season.
» Florida’s offense may not be running on all cylinders, but its defense is ranked first in the SEC and eighth nationally (60.0 points per game). In fact, UF has already held three opponents 30 points or more below their season average and six teams 19 points or more below their averages.
» The Gators have not seen a single player score 20+ points in a game this season.
» Tennessee enters with the top offense in the SEC (86.4 points per game). It has not lost a game in regulation this season, and it’s lone defeat came against the then-No. 2 team in the nation.
» The Gators under White are 0-3 against top-five teams and 10-16 against AP Top 25 teams. Florida has not defeated a top-five team since the 2009 NCAA Tournament.

» Allen enters 16th in program history in scoring (1,449) and has an opportunity to enter the top 10 before the ending the season. He also has the best free throw percentage in program history (.871) and is sixth in three-point attempts (617) and eighth in makes (207). This will mark Allen’s 113th start, tied for sixth in program history.
» Hayes is fifth in program history with 175 blocks, one away from fourth and 11 away from third.

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