Florida vs LSU Preview

Date: October 15, 2022
Time: 7:00 p.m. EST
Network: ESPN
Records: Florida Gators (4-2) vs LSU Tigers (4-2)
Location: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, Florida
Spread: Florida -2.5
Over/Under: 50.5
Pick: Florida 31 – LSU 27

Florida vs LSU Preview

Florida comes into this game as a two and a half point favorite at home. The Gators and Tigers both enter at 4-2. LSU is coming off a 40-13 loss to Tennessee, while Florida is coming off a 24-17 victory against Missouri. The game will be a test of strength vs strength and weakness vs weakness, and it could very well come down to the end.

LSU Tigers

Offensive Stats

Points Per Game (Rank): 25.2 (83)
Total Yards Per Game: 404.6 (55)
Passing YPG: 243.6 (62)
Rushing YPG: 161.0 (54)
Points Per Play: 0.326 (91)
Yards Per Play: 5.2 (79)
3rd Down Conversion %: 43.48 (38)
4th Down Conversion %: 50.00 (68)
Red Zone Scoring %: 78.95 (78)

Rush Play %: 47.80 (88)
Yards Per Carry: 4.4 (55)
Runs Per Game: 37.0 (53)

Pass Play %: 52.20 (44)
Completion %: 67.21 (20)
Yards Per Pass: 6.7 (93)
Passes Per Game: 36.6 (26)
Interception %: 0.55 (6)
QB Sack %: 9.41 (115)

Defensive Stats

Points Per Game (Rank): 19.4 (22)
Total Yards Per Game: 341.8 (28)
Passing YPG: 219.4 (43)
Rushing YPG: 122.4 (32)
Points Per Play: 0.297 (31)
Yards Per Play: 5.2 (46)
3rd Down Conversion %: 38.89 (65)
4th Down Conversion %: 50.00 (46)
Red Zone Scoring %: 78.57 (38)

Rush Play %: 50.76 (59)
Yards Per Carry: 3.7 (41)
Runs Per Game: 33.2 (32)

Pass Play %: 49.24 (73)
Completion %: 57.05 (31)
Yards Per Pass: 7.4 (70)
Passes Per Game: 29.8 (43)
Interception %: 2.01 (83)
QB Sack %: 7.45 (28)

Advanced Stats

F+ is a combination of FEI and SP+. SP+ is an opponent and tempo adjusted efficiency metric while FEI is a neutral field scoring differential per-possession metric. F+ is broken down into Offensive F+ (OF+) and Defensive F+ (DF+). All five of the metrics are from Football Outsiders. PFF’s Point Spread Rating is PFF’s power rankings.

F+: 1.00 (19)
FEI: 0.54 (16)
SP+: 12.4 (25)
OF+: 0.77 (27)
DF+: 1.16 (17)

PFF: 7.1 (35)

LSU Tigers Team Breakdown

The LSU Tigers are lead by transfer quarterback Jayden Daniels, formerly of Arizona State. Daniels posses a significant threat to a Gators defense that has struggled with mobile quarterbacks. The Tigers are extremely talented at receiver as well. The weaknesses of the offense sit on their running backs and their offensive line, which is being made worse by injuries.

LSU has an extensive history of defensive back play, but this team is actually led by their defensive line. Ali Gaye and B.J. Ojulari on the edge and Jaquelin Roy and Mekhi Wingo on the interior. Mike Jones Jr. leads the linebacker core, with key freshman Harold Perkins getting key snaps. The linebackers will have to do a good job of containing and tackling, and will be relied upon to stop Anthony Richardson’s scrambles. While the secondary is not up to the usual LSU standards, they are an experienced group with multiple transfers, including Mekhi Garner who played under Billy Napier last season at Louisiana.

LSU Tigers Keys To Victory

  1. Stop the Run
  2. Protect the Quarterback
  3. Limit Turnovers
  4. Get the Tight Ends Involved

Florida Gators

Offensive Stats

Points Per Game (Rank): 26.6 (70)
Total Yards Per Game: 390.8 (71)
Passing YPG: 188.4 (107)
Rushing YPG: 202.4 (24)
Points Per Play: 0.430 (39)
Yards Per Play: 6.3 (20)
3rd Down Conversion %: 38.71 (67)
4th Down Conversion %: 75.00 (15)
Red Zone Scoring %: 82.35 (67)

Rush Play %: 54.69 (45)
Yards Per Carry: 6.0 (6)
Runs Per Game: 33.8 (87)

Pass Play %: 45.31 (87)
Completion %: 53.68 (113)
Yards Per Pass: 6.9 (84)
Passes Per Game: 27.2 (102)
Interception %: 4.41 (115)
QB Sack %: 2.86 (16)

Defensive Stats

Points Per Game (Rank): 27.0 (63)
Total Yards Per Game: 423.8 (95)
Passing YPG: 220.6 (49)
Rushing YPG: 203.2 (117)
Points Per Play: 0.378 (62)
Yards Per Play: 5.9 (98)
3rd Down Conversion %: 52.24 (125)
4th Down Conversion %: 28.57 (14)
Red Zone Scoring %: 80.00 (42)

Rush Play %: 57.42 (117)
Yards Per Carry: 5.0 (131)
Runs Per Game: 41.0 (108)

Pass Play %: 42.58 (15)
Completion %: 64.08 (90)
Yards Per Pass: 7.8 (83)
Passes Per Game: 28.4 (29)
Interception %: 4.23 (16)
QB Sack %: 6.58 (45)


F+: 0.68 (37)
FEI: 0.32 (38)
SP+: 9.6 (35)
OF+: 0.77 (26)
DF+: 0.45 (41)

PFF: 7.0 (36)

Florida Gators Team Breakdown

Running Game
Florida vs LSU
Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Gators come into this game as one of the most efficient running games in the country. Montrell Johnson will be getting his first start at Florida. Johnson is averaging 8.0 yards per carry (YPC) entering the game. Trevor Etienne is listed as second string for the first time this season. The 4-star freshman from Louisiana is currently averaging 6.7 YPC.

Nay’quan Wright will be the third running back for the first time this season, but will continue to rotate through. Wright is much less effective on the ground than Johnson and Etienne, averaging just 4.0 YPC, but he provides a lot of value in the passing game. Wright has played less recently even while starting, getting just 8 snaps against Missouri last week. Anthony Richardson will be looked upon to provide explosive plays to the offense when he runs, especially against an LSU defense that plays a decent amount of man coverage.

Passing Game

In the passing game, the Gators have been very up and down this season. Richardson has been the main reason why, as he has yet to find much consistency. He has a 55.9% completion percentage and is averaging 8.2 yards per attempt. According to PFF, his adjusted completion percentage is 64.8%. Ideally, it would be above 70%. Richardson has a 70.7 PFF grade on the season, with 8 big time throws, which they describe as “a pass with excellent ball location and timing, generally thrown further down the field and/or into a tighter window” according to PFF’s Steve Palazzolo and Sam Monson. He also has 9 turnover-worthy throws.

For the Gators receiving wise, Justin Shorter leads the team in yards with 334 yards on 15 catches, averaging an impressive 22.3 yards per reception. Xzavier Henderson leads the team with receptions with 23 for just 210 yards. Ricky Pearsall leads the team in touchdown receptions with just two, but has added one on the ground. He has 14 catches for 254 yards for 18.1 yards per reception.

Florida Gators Keys To Victory

  1. Get 3rd Down Stops
  2. Run The Ball
  3. Pressure and Contain the Quarterback
  4. Win the Turnover Battle

Florida vs LSU Recruiting Notes

This game is a major official and unofficial visit weekend for the Gators. They have a lot of high value 2023 and 2024 targets visiting and will look to impress. Florida has decided to make this weekend a big recruiting weekend because of the bye week next week, which will allow for coaches to spend more time with recruits after the game on Sunday and even Monday. It is easily the biggest recruiting weekend of the year for the Gators.

2023 Official Visitors

The Gators are welcoming four official visitors according to On3 and Gators Online’s Donavon Keiser. Newly committed safety Bryce Thornton, and quarterback commit Marcus Stokes are two of them. A pair of 5-star teammates make up the other two, in defensive tackle James Smith and edge rusher Qua Russaw.

2023 Unofficial Visitors

5-Star running back and Alabama commit Richard Young will be attending the game for the second time this season, according to 247Sports and Swamp247’s Blake Alderman. 4-star defensive tackle Jordan Hall will be in attendance, as will 4-star defensive tackle and UCF commit John Walker. South Carolina commit Xzavier McCloud will be visiting as well. Georgia Tech graduate transfer linebacker Demetrius Knight will be there, as well Gainesville receiver 4-star Jaren Hamilton. Both Knight and Hamilton have not received offers from this coaching staff.

2023 Commits Visiting

Sports Illustrated’s Conner Clarke has the Gator’s hosting 11 current 2023 commits on unofficial visits for Florida vs LSU. The three stars are wide receivers Creed Whittemore and Tyree Patterson, as well as interior offensive lineman Knijeah Harris from IMG Academy. Recently committed four-star cornerback Dijon Johnson will be in attendance, as will cornerback Sharif Denson. Safety Jordan Castell and linebacker Jaden Robinson will be there. Three four-star defensive linemen will be in attendance with TJ Searcy, Kamran James, and Kelby Collins. Collins is currently Florida’s highest ranked commit on the On3 consensus. Top 100 wide receiver Aidan Mizell will be at the game as well.

2024 Visitors

There are a ton of high-quality 2024 visitors that will be in attendance. 247Sports 5-star quarterback DJ Lagway leads the list of names. Other 5-stars in attendance include top cornerback and number two overall recruit Desmond Ricks, legacy recruit edge rusher Elijah Rushing, and wide receivers and teammates Jeremiah Smith and Josiah Trader.

2024 running back commit Chauncey Bowens is among the four-stars in attendance for 2024. Running back Stacy Gage will be there, as will offensive tackle Daniel Calhoun. Florida State commit Jordan Pride, a safety is expected to be there, as is safety Jordan Johnson-Rubell. Edge rusher Ernest Willor is expected to be there, as are linebacker Kristopher Jones and cornerback TyShun White.

There are a couple three-stars expected to be in attendance for 2024. One is defensive lineman Kendall Jackson. The other is safety Christian Peterson, who does not currently have an offer from Florida.

2025 Prospects

247Sports Consensus 5-star receivers Caleb Cunningham and Jamie Ffrench are expected to be in attendance for Florida vs LSU, as is four star receiver Koby Howard. Tight end Ethan Barbour is expected to be there, as well as athlete Vernell Brown III and linebacker Gavin Nix. Quarterback Tramell Jones Jr is expected to be in attendance. On3 expects edge rusher Armondo Blount to be there as well.

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