Tennessee vs Florida Odds, Picks and Predictions: Vols Deliver a Blow to the Gators

The Volunteers are surging up the rankings and will look to win their fifth game in a row when they play host to an SEC rival. Find out why we're ultimately backing the Vols to keep their win streak going tonight in our Tennessee vs. Florida betting picks.

Last Updated: Feb 1, 2023 2:25 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Santiago Vescovi Tennessee Volunteers NCAAB
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Another installment of one of the best rivalries in the SEC gets going again when Tennessee heads south to take on Florida. 

You could argue that this one is one of the best Tennessee teams we've seen in quite some time. There was some disappointment in the home loss to Kentucky, but the Vols haven't lost since then. It's why they have since climbed to No. 2 in the AP Rankings.

The Gators have had mixed results under first-year head coach Todd Golden. Before their recent double-digit loss at Kansas State, Florida had gotten into a bit of a groove with two straight conference wins. However, some of that good play was undone by an awful first half in Manhattan, from which the team never recovered. 

What's the best bet for tonight's matchup? Find out in our college basketball picks and predictions for Tennessee vs. Florida on February 1.

Tennessee vs Florida best odds

Tennessee vs Florida picks and predictions

A conference favorite in a rivalry game on the road screams to take the underdog, but I have to go in a different direction here.

There's an argument to make for this Tennessee team as the National Champion favorite. I don't know if I can look past Rick Barnes' postseason record to lay a bet on them to win it, but the data is there. The Vols have just three losses on the season — one of which occurred in November — and have a historically elite defensive unit. They enter February allowing just .786 points per possession, and since 1997, only one team has finished with a defense that allowed less than .80 points per possession.

Florida has some looming positive regression, but facing Tennessee isn't exactly where you'd expect that regression to occur. Todd Golden knows offense. He routinely put up great numbers with San Francisco before coming to Florida, but I wonder if he has the personnel here.

The problem in this matchup is that every team tries to get quick points against the Vols because they are nearly impossible to score against in the halfcourt. To score on the Vols regularly, you need to have sensational shooters who can play at different areas of the floor. That's simply something the Gators really lack. 

On the other end, Tennessee can do enough scoring to cover and win. The Gators struggle to defend in the post and that's music to UT's ears. Both Uros Plasvic and Olivier Nkamhoua shoot over 60% from the field on post-ups, and either one of them should be able to dominate in the paint.

It's all Vols tonight. They are the better team and have a great matchup on the offensive end. 

My best bet: Tennessee -5 (-110 at bet365)

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Tennessee vs Florida spread analysis

We're rolling with the Vols tonight. The rivalry aspect of this game is giving you a bargain price, but I can't pass up this opportunity. Tennessee will enter this game with the second-best margin of victory in college basketball, as the program is currently winning games by an average of 22 points.

In addition, the Vols are playing some of the best basketball they have played all year, buoyed by that impressive win against Texas. In a season filled with shocks, an upset here would still be appalling. 

Tennessee vs Florida Over/Under analysis

My numbers force me to play the Florida team total Under 63.5 (-110) at BetRivers. I'll put a full unit on it. 

As I talked about at length, I don't see how the Gators score regularly in the halfcourt against Tennessee. Getting this number above 60 feels like a gift.

Before the Texas game, the Vols had given up 60+ points just twice in the new year. Those both came against teams that play with more tempo and have more talent than Florida. This defense is on a historic pace, and I expect the unit to be as good as ever tonight against an SEC rival.

Florida has a limited amount of offensive execution to exploit Tennesse, and there's a reason why the Gators have averaged less than a point per possession this season. 

Tennessee vs Florida betting trend to know

The favorite is 10-4 ATS in the last 14 meetings between these two schools. Find more college basketball betting trends for Tennessee vs. Florida.

Tennessee vs Florida game info

Location: Exactech Arena at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center, Gainesville, FL
Date: Wednesday, February 1, 2023
Tip-off: 7:00 p.m. ET

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