Kentucky Wildcats vs. Florida Gators Picks, Predictions, Odds

The Kentucky Wildcats and the Florida Gators open their conference schedules Saturday at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Fla. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET, and the game can be viewed on ESPN.

Updated on 09/22/2023
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The Wildcats and Gators renew acquaintances in The Swamp on Saturday, and after years of frustration, suddenly a trip to Florida isn't as dreadful as it once was for Kentucky.

Kentucky lost 31 consecutive meetings from Nov. 1987 to Sept. 2017 before finally breaking through for a 27-16 win in Gainesville on Sept. 8, 2018. In one of those 31 straight losses, I attended with a buddy of mine who is a Kentucky fan, and his dad, who is a die-hard Big Blue fan. The date was Sept. 10, 1994, and Florida trounced Kentucky 73-7. I didn't have a dog in the fight that day, but they were each super disappointed in the outcome. I remember my buddy's dad driving, and I'd say something like, "Hey, watch your speed. You're going 73", etc. I am surprised they didn't make me get out and walk down Interstate 75.

The Wildcats have leveled the playing field significantly in this series of late, winning two of the past four meetings, their most success against the Gators since a 4-2 straight from Nov. 1974 to Nov. 1979. Even with those two wins in the past four seasons, Kentucky has just seven wins against Florida dating back to 1957, so perhaps Wildcats basketball coach John Calipari is right - this is still mostly a basketball school.

Kentucky was a bit sluggish out of the gate against Miami-Ohio last week, tied 7-7 after one quarter, while leading just 13-10 at half. However, the Wildcats got it going in the final 30 minutes, outscoring the Redhawks 24-3, pulling away for the 37-13 win and cover of the 16-point spread. The early woes didn't help OVER bettors, though, as the UNDER (54.5) connected still.

Florida was in a dogfight with Utah, previously ranked No. 7 in the nation. The Gators and Utes had a seesaw battle all afternoon, with Florida leading 14-13 at halftime. The Utes took the lead 19-14 in the third quarter, the Gators re-gained the lead 22-19 early in the fourth, the Utes responded with a TD run to make it 26-22, and the Gators finished it off with a TD run by QB Anthony Richardson. It was an entertaining game, helping head coach Billy Napier win his debut on the Florida sideline.

Score Prediction: Florida 31, Kentucky 26
Best Bet: OVER 52.5 (-110)


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Date: Saturday, Sept. 10, 2022
Matchup: SEC
Venue: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium
Location: Gainesville, Florida
Time-TV: ESPN, 7:00 p.m. ET


The Wildcats received a tremendous performance from QB Will Levis in the opener against Miami-Ohio, as he completed 21-of-32 passes for 303 yards, three touchdowns and one interception while hooking up with WR Tayvion Robinson six times for 136 yards. Kentucky was even in turnover margin, while recording three sacks. The O-line allowed four sacks, and that's a concern heading into The Swamp, against a front seven much larger than last week's MAC opponent.

With last week's cover, Kentucky is 3-0-1 ATS in the past four games overall dating back to last season, while going 4-1 ATS in the past five games in the month of September. The Wildcats have also stacked covers, going 4-1-1 ATS in the past six after covering the spread.

As far as the total is concerned, the UNDER is 15-6 in the past 21 games on the road for the Wildcats, while going 23-11 in the past 34 SEC contests.

In this series, Kentucky is actually 4-0-1 ATS in the past five meetings, with two outright victories. The underdog is also 4-0-1 ATS in the past five, which was Kentucky every time. The road team is 1-4-1 ATS in the previous six in the series, so that doesn't bode well for UK.

Florida QB Anthony Richardson had 3 rush TDs vs. Utah in Week 1. (Getty Images)


Richardson turned a lot of heads last weekend against the Utes in a big-time performance, and the talking heads on television started tossing around the 'H' word - Heisman. It's way, way, way too early to even talk about that kind of stuff yet, although the hype machine will only grow if he can replicate last week's numbers in the SEC opener. Richardson completed 17-of-24 passes for 168 yards, no touchdowns and no interceptions, while running for a team-high 106 yards and three scores. There were even some Cam Newton comparison flying around. I wonder if Richardson wears capri pants and scarves? Anyway...

Florida is just 1-7 ATS across the past eight games overall dating back to last season, but that's misleading, and a reason why you shouldn't take too many trends seriously. That lone cover was last week over Utah, and that's a heck of a lot more important than the seven games it didn't cover at the end of last season under another coaching staff.

For totals, the UNDER is 5-2 in the past seven at home, and 5-2 in the past seven SEC games. Again, there has been change up top, so those stats aren't terribly meaningful. The best thing to look at, albeit a small sample size, is a win as underdog, a cover and an OVER result last weekend against a top-10 team.


  • Kentucky is 4-1 ATS in the past five September games.
  • Florida is 1-4 ATS in the past five home games.
  • Florida is 0-4 ATS in the past four SEC games.
  • Florida is 9-4 ATS in the past 13 September games.
  • UNDER is 15-6 in the past 21 road games for Kentucky.
  • UNDER is 23-11 in the past 34 SEC games for Kentucky.
  • UNDER is 5-2 in the past seven home games for Florida.
  • UNDER is 5-2 in the past seven SEC games for Florida.
  • Kentucky is 4-0-1 ATS in the past five meetings.
  • Underdog is 4-0-1 ATS in the past five meetings.