Florida vs. Georgia: Latest Spread Info, BCS Impact and Predictions

Darin PikeContributor IOctober 25, 2012

GAINESVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 20: Tight End Jordan Reed #11 of the Florida Gators is celebrates his touchdown in the first quarter with wide receiver Frankie Hammond #85 of the Florida Gators and tight end Clay Burton #88 of the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 20, 2012 in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

The Georgia Bulldogs may be ranked in the Top 10 but they could use all the help they can get against the Florida Gators on Saturday. They may be listed as the home team, but the neutral site game won't offer the same advantage they would get from playing in Athens, Georgia.

Florida is still looking for a marquee win.

Their victory over LSU has lost some luster in recent weeks. South Carolina is a quality win after beating Georgia, but their loss to LSU hurt their street cred. 

But none of the elite SEC East teams play Alabama this season and none face top competition from another major football conference.

Both teams are focused on this game, though, as they both have much riding on the outcome.


Where: Everbank Field, Jacksonville, Florida
When: Saturday, Oct. 27 at 3:30 p.m.
Watch: CBS
Listen: Florida Gators Radio Network (FL) and Georgia Bulldogs Radio Network (GA and part of SC)


Current Betting Lines (via Bovada and OddsShark)

Money Line: Florida -265, Georgia +225


Spread: Florida -7

Will Muschamp has turned quite a few heads in his second season with the Gators. But the team he inherited was better off than most anticipated.

Florida had a down year (8-5) in 2010, but they were 13-1 with major bowl wins the two prior years. 

There were certainly growing pains last season, and leaning on a sophomore quarterback that was learning a new offense under a new coordinator presented reasons for concern in 2012.

His players have responded, though. They play hard and have won by being more physical than their opponents.

That will be the difference in Jacksonville. Georgia will hang with Florida but ultimately come up short.


Over/Under: 46½

Both of these teams can play good defense, but there will be a little more offense in this game than the spread is indicating. 

Neither defense will get the same edge they'd have in a home game, allowing the offensive line an advantage off the snap. Florida's offense has been steadily improving, witnessed by a 44-point output against South Carolina last week.

Georgia only managed a single touchdown on the road against South Carolina but put up 99 points in wins over Tennessee and Vanderbilt at home.

Both offenses will be clicking on Saturday and the scoreboard will reflect it.

@bmart39 I'm leaning Georgia despite seeing nothing on tape or statistically that says they should beat Florida.

— Todd McShay (@McShay13) October 25, 2012


Key Injuries (via USA Today)

Florida Gators








Jelani Jenkins




Damien Jacobs




Latroy Pittman




Cody Riggs




Drew Ferris




Matt Patchan




Georgia Bulldogs 








Dallas Lee




Jarvis Jones




Dexter Morant




Abry Jones




Sterling Bailey




Brandon Burrows




Brandon Harton





BCS Implications

Florida would secure their 11th trip to the SEC Title Game since the inaugural matchup in 1992 with a win on Saturday. Of possibly more importance, it keeps them in contention to play in the National Championship Game.

Florida has done what they've needed to do so far in 2012 and Georgia is one of the few teams that can hang a loss on them. They also have Florida State looming on the schedule, but an anticipated showdown with Alabama in the SEC Title Game could determine half of the matchup for the National Championship.

Georgia is playing for a major bowl game and can still make the SEC Title game if they win out. They are currently No. 10 in the BCS standings and a win over Florida would likely secure a January payday.

Week 2 of BCS standings: 1. Alabama2. Florida3. Kansas St4. Oregon5. Notre Dame6. LSU7. Oregon St8. Oklahoma9. USC10. Georgia

— Lou Holtz (@ESPNDrLou) October 22, 2012


Keys to Florida Victory

The weight of this game will fall squarely on the shoulder of Jeff Driskel, the Gators' young quarterback.

He sounds ready for the game, as shared by an AP report on ESPN.com.

It's another big game. It's an SEC East game, and it's the Florida-Georgia game. You couldn't really ask for more.

You come to Florida to play in games like this. We're excited to start preparing and we're ready for another big week.

We know what's at stake, but we're going to prepare like we have been all year and just be ready when it comes Saturday.

Florida will win this game on the ground, but Driskel needs to be ready to keep the Bulldogs honest with his arm. Mike Gillislee will be able to roll so long as he isn't facing a stacked box.


Keys to Georgia Victory

The Bulldogs need to find some balance in this game. Their loss to South Carolina showed they can't afford to fall behind early.

Florida doesn't have the same passing threat, but Driskel will take advantage of openings.

Getting Jarvis Jones back for this game is a must. He had four sacks in the game against the Gators last season.

Jones can apply pressure to keep Florida's passing game in check and is a wrecking ball in the ground game. Georgia has to have him in the lineup. 


Florida will beat Georgia to secure a trip to the SEC Championship Game and lock up a premier bowl game.

I'm still not convinced the Gators are one of the top five teams in the country, but they will have two opportunities to prove me wrong. They aren't going to dominate the Bulldogs in the same fashion they did the Gamecocks, but the score may not be as close as my prediction.

If Jones ends up sidelined in this game the Gators should be able to run up the score.

Prediction: Florida 35, Georgia 24


Darin Pike is a writer for Bleacher Report's Breaking News Team and a Featured Columnist covering the NFL and Seattle Seahawks.