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Virginia Opens as a Small Dog Against Florida After First-Round Scare

After surviving a first-round scare against UNC Wilmington and drawing a matchup with Florida in the Round of 32, the fifth-seeded Virginia Cavaliers and their NCAA-best scoring defense opened as the slight betting underdogs. Florida has struggled to beat teams from the ACC of late and comes into this game losing three of its last five games.

SHARK BITES
  • Florida is 6-0 SU and ATS in its last 6 games as a favorite of 1.5 or less.
  • Virginia is 2-6 ATS in its last 8 games against teams with winning records.
  • The Gators are 24-3 as the favored team this season.

For a while, it looked like Virginia was in serious trouble Thursday and it took 76 points – the most they’ve scored in a win since January – to get by a team they were favored to beat by 7.5 points. The Cavaliers haven’t been the underdog very often this season but with a 3-1 ATS record in games they weren’t favored to win, they’re not a bad bet when given points.

Neither of these teams is what you’d call on fire but both have impressive pedigrees in the tournament. The Gators, who won the tournament back to back in ’06 and ’07, don’t have any standout players but feature a well-rounded attack and a decent offensive set that ranks 54th in the nation in scoring.

Florida could be let down, however, by its less than terrific shooting. Virginia has limited opponents to a 39.59 field-goal percentage so far this season and the Gators rank 109th in shooting efficiency.

Virginia Cavaliers vs Florida Gators Matchup

Team Betting Records & Power Rankings

The Florida Gators are 25-8 so far on the season, and 19-13 ATS vs the number. The Virginia Cavaliers, meanwhile, are 23-10 and 19-13 ATS. OVER/UNDER bettors have seen Florida go 14-18 and the Virginia Cavaliers go 13-19 on betting totals.

The Odds Shark Power Rankings have the Florida Gators at No. 19 and the Virginia Cavaliers at No. 86 heading into this college basketball betting matchup.

Statistical Matchup

Rating these schools in several key categories is important for handicappers and Florida has the nation's No. 54-rated offensive output, at 78.33 PPG. The visiting Virginia Cavaliers defense ranks No. 1 allowing on average 56.09 PPG. The Gators FG% has averaged 45.07% so far, less than the Florida Cavaliers marksmen have achieved on the year, 46.52% per game.

Recent Outings Betting Recap

The Cavaliers grabbed a 76-71 win over the Seahawks on Thursday, behind a 24-point effort from London Perrantes at Amway Center.

Devin Robinson scored 24 points leading the Gators to a 80-65 victory over East Tennessee State at Amway Center on Thursday.

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