Saturday Selections: Week 3 SEC Picks Against the Spread

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Sep 6, 2014; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Jeff Driskel (6) drops back to throw the ball against the Eastern Michigan Eagles during the second half at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Florida Gators defeated the Eastern Michigan Eagles 65-0. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Kentucky at Florida (-18.5), 6:30pm CT, SEC Network

This is one of the most intriguing matchups of the week in the SEC. It is a conference game first of all, which is always important, but more so it is a contest between two teams that appear to be much improved in 2014.

Kentucky blasted Tennessee-Martin in Week 1, and got off to a strong start last Saturday against Ohio before holding on 20-3. The defense that was one of the worst in the SEC last season has allowed an average of 8.5 points per game this year. Plus, the offense has shown explosive playmaking ability that was completely absent in 2013.

Along the same lines, Florida opened the season (finally) with a 65-0 win over Eastern Michigan. The Gators looked just as good on defense as we thought they would, and they were perhaps even better than expected under new offensive coordinator Kurt Roper. Regardless of the opponent, it has been quite a while since we saw an offensive outburst like that in Gainesville.

The Gators are a trendy pick to win the SEC East, especially now that South Carolina has stumbled out of the starting blocks this season. Kentucky on the other hand, has received nearly zero credit for their strong start. The Wildcats look like a bowl team so far this season, and will give Florida fits Saturday. Despite JoJo Kemp’s prediction, they may not win, but it will be close.

Florida 31, Kentucky 24