Outback Bowl Betting - Meyer Looks For One Last Postseason Win In Outback Bowl

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by - 1/1/2011 10:03 AM Share

Two of the most recognized head coaches in college football betting will lead their programs against one another in this year's Outback Bowl on New Year's Day, when Urban Meyer's Florida Gators clash with Joe Paterno's Penn State Nittany Lions. Both teams suffered down years, each registering a 7-5 record including a 4-4 mark in conference play.

•Outback Bowl
•Florida Gators @ Penn State Nittany Lions
•Saturday January 1, 2011 - 1:00 PM ET
•Online Sports Betting Odds: Florida - 7
Despite the fact that Paterno has coached for 45 seasons, it's the 46-year-old Meyer that will be calling it quits following the Outback Bowl. Health concerns forced him to consider the option after he nearly retired a year ago, and he ultimately decided to make this his final game.

Outback Bowl Betting Preview: Florida
Meyer's program wasn't nearly as successful in the Gators' first season without NFL betting quarterback Tim Tebow, who moved on to the Denver Broncos following a Heisman trophy and national championship two years ago. The embattled head coach held on to his position for the 2010 season despite initially announcing his resignation last December after he was rushed to hospital, but decided to go one more year.

Meyer will need his offense to step up big time to enjoy his swan song after they struggled towards the end of the year, with an average of just 251 yards per game over the final two, including six turnovers in losses to the South Carolina Gamecocks and Florida State Seminoles. Injuries have ravaged the Gators' depth defensively with cornerback Janoris Jenkins and defensive tackles Lawrence Marsh and Terron Sanders all out, so the onus will be on quarterback John Brantley and the offense to keep this one close.

Outback Bowl Betting Preview: Penn State
The Nittany Lions will need to step up defensively to counter the speed and finesse of Meyer's spread offense, and Paterno has likely played plenty of tape from Florida's losses to the Gamecocks and Seminoles. Penn State will need to overcome any defensive deficiencies with an offense that finished ninth in the Big Ten with 24.6 points per game. Quarterback Matt McGloin will need to step up as much as anyone after he replaced Robert Bolden at midseason and looked solid the rest of the way. Senior running back Evan Royster averaged close to five yards per carry during the regular season with six touchdowns, and will need to make the most of his touches.

The Match Up: Florida vs. Penn State

The Gators have beaten Penn State in both of their New Year's Day meetings, and there is reason to think they can make it three in a row. Meyer is 6-1 all-time in postseason games, including four BCS victories, and there isn't a better way for the head coach to go out then with a big football betting win at the Outback Bowl. Florida will win, but it will be closer than many people are projecting it will be.

Outback Bowl Betting Pick: Penn State


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