Florida at South Carolina: Game pick, prediction, odds, line, spread, time, TV, watch live stream

By Adam Silverstein
October 19, 2019
Florida at South Carolina: Game pick, prediction, odds, line, spread, time, TV, watch live stream
Football

Image Credit: Michael Nash

The annual game between the Florida Gators and South Carolina Gamecocks has ratcheted up in recent years ever since Steve Spurrier returned from his brief time in the NFL and decided to helm an SEC East rival. Prior to Spurrier taking over the Gamecocks program, the Gators had won 14 straight games in the series. Spurrier won the first Florida-South Carolina meeting he coached from the opposite sideline in 2005, and UF’s overall record in the series starting that season is just 8-6.

Considering the Gators won two national championships in that span, it’s impressive what Spurrier started and Will Muschamp — yes, obviously another former Florida coach — is continuing at the Palmetto State’s namesake university. Even this season, South Carolina is coming off a signature win over a top-five Georgia team, while No. 9 Florida enters Saturday’s game limping from a second-half beat down in Tiger Stadium to now-No. 2 LSU.

What will go down as the Gators look to rebound from their first loss of the season? Let’s find out with plenty of information, notes, analysis and a game prediction for Florida at South Carolina.

Viewing information

Date: Saturday, Oct. 19 | Time: 12 p.m. ET
Location: Williams-Brice Stadium — Columbia, South Carolina [80,250]

TV: ESPN (Dave Pasch, Greg McElroy, Tom Luginbill)
Live stream: WatchESPN.com | SiriusXM: 111/207 | Radio: WRUF, TuneIn
Live updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter

Tale of the tape

No. 9 Florida GatorsSouth Carolina Gamecocks
Head coachDan MullenWill Muschamp
Record6-1 (3-1)3-3 (2-2)
ConferenceSECSEC

Injuries and absences

Probable (1): RB Dameon Pierce (head)
Out (4): DE Jon Greenard (ankle), DE Jabari Zuniga (ankle), ATH Kadarius Toney (shoulder), DT Elijah Conliffe (leg)
Out for season (3): QB Feleipe Franks (ankle), CB C.J. McWilliams (Achilles), LB David Reese (Achilles)

Game notes

» Florida is 27-9-3 all-time against South Carolina with an 11-7-1 mark in Columbia and victories in three of the teams’ last four meetings. UF is 2-1 against the Muschamp-coached USC.
» The last two South Carolina coaches (Muschamp, Steve Spurrier) previously coached at Florida. The Gators are 8-6 against the Gamecocks since Spurrier took over the team in 2005. UF had won 14 straight games over USC prior to this phenomenon.
» The Gators began a season 6-0 for the first time since 2015. LSU ended both undefeated starts for UF in Tiger Stadium. Florida had won 10 straight games for the first time since 2011-12 and did so by a combined 339-96.
» Through its first seven games this season, UF is outscoring opponents 119-38 in the second half and 64-14 in the fourth quarter.
» The Gators is second nationally and first among Power Five teams in interceptions (12) and are ninth in sacks per game (3.71).
» Florida is 4-2 against ranked opponents under Mullen (3-2 against top 10 teams), beating three ranked teams in a single season in 2018 for the first time since 2012.
» UF is looking for its first back-to-back 10-win seasons in a decade (2008-09).
» Under Mullen, the Gators are 11-0 when scoring first, 13-0 when leading after the third quarter, 12-0 when allowing 20 points or fewer, 5-0 in games decided by fewer than 10 points and 13-0 when outrushing their opponent.
» Mullen is 4-1-1 against the spread as an underdog at UF.
» Florida has scored 24+ points in 11 straight games for the first time since doing so in 24 consecutive contests from 2007-09.
» UF has scored in 392 consecutive games, an NCAA record.
» Florida is one of only two FBS teams (Alabama) that has not lost to an opponent that finished the season with a losing record dating back to the 2008 season.

Prediction and analysis

Spread: Florida -3 | O/U: 45

This line opened at 7.5 and fell sharply down 2.5 points the night before kickoff. And that drop makes sense. Not only has South Carolina announced that Ryan Hilinski is healthy and will be starting for the Gamecocks, it looks like the Gators will once again play without two key defenders in defensive ends Jonathan Greenard and Jabari Zungia. Though Florida’s offensive improvement was apparent last week at LSU, it’s defense was completely ineffective as the pass rush disappeared with both men sidelined with ankle injuries. The Gators entered that game first nationally in interceptions and fifth nationally in sacks but did not add to its total in either category.

Still, Florida is the more talented team in this game, and asking South Carolina to knock off consecutive top-10 opponents is a tall task. Whereas last season UF followed up its loss to Georgia with another to a Missouri team that was able to run through it offensively, Saturday’s opponent does not have that kind of firepower. Plus, the Gators’ offense is running along quite nicely in Year 2 under Mullen now that redshirt junior quarterback Kyle Trask is at the helm.

Assuming Trask can hold onto the ball and not give the Gamecocks additional opportunities to score, Florida should be able to find enough holes to cover the spread and win perhaps by double digits with the total going slightly over. With a week to prepare for his depth chart hit, defensive coordinator Todd Grantham should have some solutions. This is a classic situation of Florida being undervalued coming off a loss and South Carolina being overvalued coming off an upset win.

2019 records: ATS picks 2-3-2 | O/U picks 4-3

Odds and ends

» Florida will wear orange helmets with white jerseys and white pants.

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