The last time Alabama played at Florida, it was a fun game for anybody except the scorekeepers as Gators won 104-98 in an offensive showcase. That was a bit of a surprise considering the previous two games in the series played at Florida went under the total.
The record will show that this is just the second true road game for No. 15 Alabama, but the Crimson Tide did play and beat Gonzaga in a game played in Seattle, which was a neutral site in name only.
Something that might be of interest to those who bet online: Five of Alabama’s six games in December were decided by less than 10 points, including a pair of one-point games. Florida had just two such games in seven contests in December.
Alabama (+450) had the third-best odds to win the SEC title coming into the season while Florida (+1000) had the seventh-best odds.
- Game: Alabama (10-3) at Florida (9-3)
- Location: Stephen C. O’Connell Center, Gainesville, Florida
- Day/Time: Wednesday, 7 p.m. ET
- Television: ESPN2
Alabama Crimson Tide at Florida Gators Betting Lines
|Alabama||+1½ (-110)||+110||149½ (-110o)|
|Florida||-1½ (-110)||-130||149½ (-110u)|
Tide Not Shy About Dialing Long Distance
Less than a week before the Alabama Crimson Tide’s signature win of the season, they played the Miami Hurricanes in a game that generated significantly less national attention than their win in early December against reigning national finalist Gonzaga.
It was against Miami when Alabama seemingly couldn’t miss especially from the perimeter, connecting on 16 of 30 shots from three-point range. That was followed by nailing 13 more three-pointers in the win against Gonzaga.
These days, Alabama certainly isn’t afraid to launch shots up from being the three-point line. The Crimson Tide have attempted more shots from three-point range than from inside the three-point line in each of the last four games.
The only problem is that those shots haven’t been falling. Alabama is shooting less than 30 percent from three-point range as it dropped games to Memphis and Davidson while defeating Jacksonville State. During that same stretch, the Crimson Tide connected on nearly 60 percent of their shots from two-point range.
Moving forward, it is worth watching Alabama’s shot selection, especially considering that four of the seven Crimson Tide players to attempt more than 20 three-pointers are shooting less than 30 percent from long distance.
With the inconsistent shooting efforts, Alabama is 0-5 against the college basketball spread in its last five, including 1-6 on the road.
Impressive Start Distant Memory for Gators
Things couldn’t have gotten off to a much better start for the Florida Gators.
Florida won seven straight games to open the season, including victories over teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference (Florida State), the Pac-12 (California) and the Big Ten (Ohio State).
Those wins were even more impressive considering that Florida State was the No. 2 pick behind Duke to win the ACC and Ohio State had the third-best odds to win the Big Ten title before the season started.
However, Florida was unable to keep the momentum going.
Four days after a three-point win over Ohio State, Florida returned home and rolled past Troy, but since then the Gators are only 3-3 and dropped both of their games to teams from Power-5 Conferences along with a mystifying 15-point loss at home to Texas Southern.
Florida was held under 70 points in four of the first five games in that stretch but showed signs of life by shooting a season-high 53.3 percent in a win over Stony Brook on Dec. 22. The Gators also pulled down 33 offensive rebounds in back-to-back games against South Florida and Stony Brook, with the 18 offensive boards against USF allowing Florida to overcome some other issues.
The Gators were supposed to open SEC play at Ole Miss on Dec. 29 but COVID-19 issues within the Florida program forced that game to be postponed. All signs are pointing to Wednesday’s game going forward as planned.
Florida has covered against the Las Vegas odds in just two of the last six games and two of the last 10 against SEC teams.
Enter Lane at Own Risk
The game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and Florida Gators features two of the Southeastern Conference’s best shot blockers. Florida’s Colin Castleton is second with 2.5 blocks per game while Alabama’s Charles Bediako is third with 1.8 blocked shots per contest so scoring in the paint might be a bit challenging.
Alabama leads the SEC in both three-pointers made and attempted.
Florida has won 15 of the last 18 games against Alabama although the Crimson Tide have covered in the last five games they played at Florida.
It has been a tough stretch for Alabama, especially against the spread, and winning on the road in the SEC is never easy. This is a chance for the Crimson Tide to show that it is one of the top contenders in the SEC, even if there won’t be much of a payout if Alabama does hand Florida a loss at home.