Kentucky vs No. 6 Florida

Kentucky vs No. 6 Florida Preview | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Written by on November 27, 2020

Sixth-ranked Florida can’t quite clinch the SEC East Division title on Saturday with a win over struggling Kentucky, but the Gators can get right on the doorstep with a victory and they are heavy favorites on the NCAAF odds. There’s decent chance this game is postponed/canceled, though.

How to Bet Kentucky at Florida NCAA Football Odds & TV Info

  • When: Saturday, noon ET
  • Where: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium
  • TV: ESPN
  • Stream: ESPN app
  • Radio:com
  • Opening NCAAF Lines: Florida -23 (total 61)

Last Meeting

In 2019, Florida erased a second half deficit and stunned the Cats, 29-21, in Lexington. Gators QB Kyle Trask – a top Heisman candidate this year, relieved an injured Feleipe Franks and rallied Florida with three fourth-quarter touchdown drives, including his go-ahead, 4-yard scoring run with 4:11 remaining. Franks was carted off with a right leg injury late in the third quarter with his team trailing 21-10. He transferred to Arkansas this offseason. Sawyer Smith accounted for all three Kentucky touchdowns with scoring passes of 26 and 13 yards sandwiched around his 2-yard run.

Florida leads Kentucky 52-18 overall and is 28-5 in Gainesville but lost the last meeting there in 2018.

Why Bet on Kentucky? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

Coach Mark Stoops said Wednesday evening that Kentucky will be without 18 players and 10 staff members due to injuries and COVID-19 contact tracing. The Wildcats will have one more test before they board a plane to Florida on Friday. The game is in danger of being postponed based on those test results.

UK (3-5) was missing about 10 players last week when it was trashed 63-3 at Alabama. UK is playing its highest-ranked back-to-back opponents since facing No. 1 Florida and No. 3 Alabama in consecutive games during the 2009 season. Kentucky was without five starters for the Alabama game: LB Jamin Davis, P Max Duffy, OG Luke Fortner, TE Justin Rigg and RB Chris Rodriguez Jr.

Terry Wilson completed 10 of 19 passing for 120 yards in the game, while Asim Rose carried 10 times for 68 yards. Alabama native Kavosiey Smoke had 26 yards on nine carries. Josh Ali caught four passes for 52 yards, while Keaton Upshaw had three catches for 44 yards. The Wildcats intercepted their 12th pass of the season, second-most in the SEC. The Cats entered the game third in the nation in INTs.

Wilson needs 70 rushing to become the 40th player in school history to reach 1,000 rushing yards. He now has 3,081 career passing yards, becoming the 14th player in school history to reach 3,000 passing yards.

The last time Kentucky traveled to “The Swamp” in 2018 it erased a 31-year losing streak in the series overall as Benny Snell, Wilson, and Josh Allen produced one of the most memorable victories in program history, 27-16. Five of the past six meetings have seen the outcome in doubt deep into the fourth quarter.

Kentucky has played 255 ranked teams in the Associated Press Poll in its history. The Cats are 45-205-5 in those games. Since 2015, the Cats are 6-9 against ranked teams. UK’s last win over a top-10 ranked team was vs. No. 10 South Carolina in 2010 in Lexington (31-28). The Cats’ last win over a top-10 ranked team on the road was a 24-20 win over No. 4 Penn State in 1976. UK’s last win over a top-10 ranked SEC team on the road was in 1964 when the Cats upset No. 1 Ole Miss in Oxford, Miss., 27-21.

Why Bet on Florida? | 2020 NCAAF Expert Analysis

The Gators (6-1) didn’t cover a big number last week in a 38-17 win at Vanderbilt. UF QB Kyle Trask, the Heisman favorite, Trask completed 26 of his 35 attempts for 383 yards and a trio of scores, snapping his SEC record of six consecutive games with at least four TD passes.

Wingback Kadarius Toney caught six balls for 107 yards and two touchdowns, tight end Kemore Gamble had six catches and two scores, with one from backup quarterback Emory Jones, while tailback Dameon Pierce rushed for 55 yards and a score. Trask did become the first quarterback in SEC to throw at least 30 touchdowns in seven games and fell one TD shy of the seven-game NCAA record, set in 2003 by Texas Tech’s B.J. Symons. UF had nine players run the ball and nine players catch passes on the way to totaling 586 yards of offense, including 173 on the ground.

Trask has 2,554 passing yards this season. Of all the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks in history, the only two with more passing yards through the first seven games of their winning season were BYU’s Ty Detmer (2,977 in 1990) and Houston’s Andre Ware (2,930 in 1989).

Florida broke the school record for consecutive 35-point outings with its ninth straight game. Seven straight 35-point games against SEC teams is also a school record. The previous records in both regards were shared by the 2008 Gators (Oct. 4-Nov. 29) and 1996 Gators (first eight games).

Junior Kyle Pitts, the nation’s top tight end, will return to play against Kentucky on Saturday after missing the past two games recovering from nasal surgery. Pitts has already caught a school-record eight touchdowns this season. He’s caught a total of 24 passes for 414 yards. Starting linebacker James Houston will return after missing the past two games for undisclosed reasons.

Game Trends

  • Wildcats are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games as an underdog.
  • Wildcats are 9-21 ATS in their last 30 games in November.
  • Gators are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 conference games.
  • Gators are 5-2 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
  • Favorite is 9-4 ATS in their last 13 meetings.

Expert Prediction

  • Florida 37, Kentucky 17

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