CFB Week 4 Preview & Betting Odds: Florida vs. Alabama

This Saturday, the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Florida Gators will meet for the first time since 2011 (3:30 p.m. Eastern on CBS), when Alabama won going away 38-10 and went on the win the national championship.  Florida is coming off a dismal 2013 season, but is off to a 2-0 start this year.

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This Saturday, the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Florida Gators will meet for the first time since 2011 (3:30 p.m. Eastern on CBS), when Alabama won going away 38-10 and went on the win the national championship.  Florida is coming off a dismal 2013 season, but is off to a 2-0 start this year.

For the Gators, this road trip will provide a gauge for the team’s progress.  Head coach Will Muschamp’s team is fresh off a rugged triple-overtime win over Kentucky.

“There’s going to be games like that when you play in our conference, and you’ve got to find ways to win those games,” Muschamp said.  “Our guys found a way to win the game.  That’s a huge positive, and it shows some resiliency and fighting through adversity.”

The marquee matchup in this one will be between Alabama wide receiver Amari Cooper and Florida cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III, both among the nation’s best at their respective positions.  Cooper leads the country with 33 receptions and is third in receiving yards (454).

“I’m excited for the matchup,” said Hargreaves. “Everybody knows what’s coming.  Obviously, I’m going to be covering him.  I’m excited for it.”

Alabama coach Nick Saban is aware however, that it can’t be all Amari Cooper on offense.  “We need to get more people involved offensively,” he said.

The Crimson Tide will be facing a much-improved Florida offense that ranks in the top 25 in passing, rushing and scoring offense.  Much of that improvement is due to receiver Demarcus Robinson, running back Matt Jones and quarterback Jeff Driskel, who has only one interception this season.

Robinson in particular, had a superb game against Kentucky, with 216 yards receiving and two touchdowns.  “He’s a tough matchup just because he’s got really good vertical speed,” said Muschamp.  “He can run through contact.  He’s stronger.”

Alabama is the current favorite at -14.  The over/under is at 51.