Free Week 1 Prediction: Minutemen vs Gators Odds
Looking for UMass Minutemen vs. Florida Gators free picks? Week 1 College football betting sees the Minutemen taking on the #25 Gators Saturday, September 3rd at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field, Gainesville, Florida. Cappers Picks provides complimentary handicapping picks all NCAA football season long so stay tuned for more FREE college football predictions.
(0-0) UMass Minutemen (0-0) vs. Florida Gators (0-0)
Date: Saturday, September 3rd
Time: 7:30 PM
Venue: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field, Gainesville, Florida
NCAA Football Spread: Florida -35.5
NCAA Betting Total: 50.0
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A 35 point spread with a 50 point total tells you one thing: oddsmakers are not expecting UMass to score much. Practically, not at all.
Both teams will look different from last year as UMass brings back just 9 starters and Florida only brings back 11.
That will impact each team much differently though as Florida’s depth is made up of all FBS quality players. UMass can’t necessarily say the same.
UMass is also replacing their starting quarterback – which could make things ugly. Ross Comis is expected to start for the Minutemen and he’ll be tasked with a road game in Gainesville against one of the best defenses in the country. It should be a memorable first start.
So, the Minutemen didn’t regress from their 2014 3-9 campaign last season. But, they didn’t progress either. UMass has won three games in two straight seasons after going 1-11 in 2013.
Comis attempted just 21 passes last season but beat out Virginia Tech transfer Andrew Ford for the starting position. Comis will replace Blake Frohnapfel in UMass’s first season as an independent after three seasons in the MAC.
The Minutemen do bring back their top rusher in Marquis Young. Young ran for 960 yards and 7 touchdowns last season and will be relied on even more so in his sophomore season.
It should be challenging early on as UMass has to replace their top 2 offensive linemen. It will be baptism by fire for the newcomers on the line as Florida’s front seven is one of the most athletic in the country.
A new schedule as an independent could present opportunities for UMass to pick up wins and improve. At Florida in Week 1, the Minutemen will be wishing they were still in the MAC though.
Every year there are bottom of the pack FBS teams that shock a top tier team early on whether it is an actual upset or just in the first few quarters before falling apart.
This won’t be one of those games though as the Minutemen lack the talent and experience to stick with the Gators – even for a half.
Luke Del Rio has been named the starting quarterback for the Florida Gators – at least for Week 1.
Since Tim Tebow left Gainesville, the Gators have gone through a series of quarterbacks that have lacked the completeness to take the Gators back to the top. Some of their quarterbacks had shining moments but none completed a full season of consistency.
Del Rio has no real experience with Florida being his third school – Alabama and Oregon State prior. But, the Gators hope Del Rio can bring the consistency that Will Grier had in the early part of last season before getting suspended.
Year after year, the Gators put a highly athletic defense on the field. They always have to replace NFL draft picks and continue to do it.
They make it easier on themselves though as their schedule is frequently loaded with weak FBS or FCS teams in the beginning.
Expect the Gators front seven to neutralize Young and UMass’s running game and force the Minutemen to throw. Comis will be a solid QB for UMass but will definitely struggle in Week 1.
I would expect him to turn the ball over a few times in his first career start.
NCAA Football Handicapping Trends
- UMass is 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games overall
- Under is 7-3 in Florida’s last 10 games overall
- Florida is 5-8 ATS in their last 13 non-conference games
Free Week 1 NCAA Football Prediction
“The Swamp” is an intimidating place to play for any team and UMass is certainly not used to playing in any hostile environments after leaving the MAC. Add to that the fact that UMass has to replace 13 starters including their QB and this could be very ugly.
50 is a lot of points for Florida to put up on their own as I don’t expect UMass to score much – if at all.
I like this game to stay under and I love Florida to cover the 1st half.
4* Free NCAA Betting Pick: Game total under 50.0
UMass may score but don’t expect it to be against Florida’s first stringers. As Comis settles himself down a bit, he may be able to get something going late in the second half for the Minutemen.
BONUS: Florida to cover the 1st half
Week 1 Free Score Prediction: Florida 37 – Massachusetts 7
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