One of the biggest SEC matchups of 2015 is set for this Saturday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. No.8 Florida visits No.6 LSU as first-place teams in the SEC East and SEC West face off.
Florida is one of the biggest surprises in college football this season. They’ve gone 6-0 after starting the season unranked, while the Gators picked up a marquee win over then-No.3 Ole Miss two weeks ago. LSU has moved up eight spots in the AP Top 25 Poll since the start of the season, and they have two wins over teams that were ranked at the time of their matchups.
LSU is a seven-point favorite at home at Las Vegas sportsbooks. The over/under is 45.5 points on the day before the game, according to vegasinsider.com.
The Tigers will get back a few starters on Saturday against the Gators. Safety Jalen Mills hasn’t played at all this season because of an ankle injury, but he’s finally ready to make his return. The senior had played in 13 games in each of his first three seasons, recording six career interceptions. Tight end Dillon Gordon and defensive end Tashawn Bower will also be back on the field for LSU.
The team will be without starting fullback John David Moore, who could be out until November with a thigh injury. Even without Moore blocking for him last week, Leonard Fournette still managed to rush for 158 yards on 20 carries. The Heisman Trophy candidate is averaging 204.4 rushing yards per game. Florida is 12th in the nation against the run, allowing 99.2 yards on the ground per game.
The Gators will be missing their most important player, but not because of injury. Quarterback Will Grier was suspended for using a banned substance, and backup Treon Harris will start in his place. Harris completed 19-of-27 pass attempts in the first two games, but he hasn’t thrown a pass since he was suspended for Florida’s Sept. 26 game against Tennessee for violating team rules.
Florida isn’t dealing with many injuries, and they could be getting two players back on Saturday. Tight end C’yontai Lewis and linebacker Jeremi Powell are listed as probable and expected to return. Lewis has caught three passes on the year, two of which went for touchdowns. Powell gives the team depth at linebacker, and he has one tackle for a loss in 2015.
ESPN will broadcast the game at 7 p.m. ET. A free live stream is available online with WatchESPN.