Birmingham Bowl Spread, Predictions & TV Info - East Carolina Pirates vs Florida Gators

Birmingham Bowl Spread, Predictions & TV Info – East Carolina Pirates vs Florida Gators

The Florida Gators and the East Carolina Pirates face off in the Birmingham Bowl in the city that is the bowl’s namesake on Saturday, January 3, at 12 PM ET on ESPN. While this isn’t the January bowl game either team was hoping to be in when the season started back in August, its a win both squads can close the season with.

Birmingham Bowl
East Carolina Pirates vs Florida Gators
Date: Jan. 03, 2015 
Start Time: 1 p.m. ET 
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Stadium: Legion Field
TV Info: ESPN
Stream Info: WatchESPN.com
Radio:  East Carolina vs Florida
Point Spread: Gators -6.5
Game Total: 56

Birmingham Bowl Spread, Predictions & TV Info – East Carolina Pirates vs Florida Gators

While the Florida Gators should be happy that they are even playing in a bowl game this year, the East Carolina Pirates will be looking to make a statement by beating a blue-chip SEC team.

Florida’s offense looked horrible for much of the season and it cost head-coach Will Muschamp his job, but the defense was strong enough to get the Gators to a bowl game. East Carolina, on the other hand, has been one of the most exciting teams in college football at times. This combo will make this bowl game palatable.

[Join Sportbet.com today or view for our great bonuses]

East Carolina will win the Birmingham Bowl if

Win the turnover battle and put some points on the board!

If the East Carolina Pirates want to win the 2015 Birmingham Bowl, then they’re going to need to win the turnover battle and put some points on the board against the defensive-minded Gators.

The Pirates lost three of their final five games and lost the turnover battle in a big way in two of those contests as they were a whopping -5 against Temple and -2 against Central Florida in their season-ending loss to the Knights.

East Carolina will also need to harass freshman quarterback Treon Harris in this contest. Harris has thrown for 633 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions and run for another 240 yards and two scores since taking over as starter five games ago, but the young signal-caller also has his share of drama coming into this contest after being charged with a second-degree misdemeanor on Dec. 13

Florida will win the Birmingham Bowl if

They can stop the combination of Shane Carden and Justin Hardy – and score the ball!

I don’t say this lightly. Things didn’t go according to plan for the Florida Gators in 2014. After all, they only won six games and Will Muschamp is no longer the head coach. Regardless, they made a bowl game (unlike last year), even though it is the Birmingham Bowl.

Florida ranked ninth in the country in total defense and they’ll have to be at their very best to stop the nation’s No. 1 quarterback-receiver combination in Carden and Hardy.

Shane Carden won the American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Year award after completing 65 percent of his passes for 4, 309 yards with 28 touchdowns and just eight interceptions.

Carden has hooked up with Hardy for a whopping 27 career touchdowns – the most among active duos. Hardy caught 110 passes this season for 1,334 yards and nine scores. Carden averages 359.1 passing yards per game and has racked up five 400-yard games this season

Who will win the Birmingham Bowl?

58 percent of the betting public like the Florida Gators to cover the spread – and I guess if ECU can lose to a pitiful team like Temple – then they can lose to anyone. Still, something tells me the Pirates are going to bring their collective ‘A’ game to cover the spread against the Gators at the very least.

East Carolina is 5-0 ATS in their last five non-conference games and 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games following an SU loss.

Florida is 10-4 ATS in its last 14 neutral site games, but the Gators are also 2-6 ATS in their last eight games following an ATS win.

The Pirates cover the bowl game betting line – and push the Gators really hard for the outright win!

Against The Spread Birmingham Bowl Pick: East Carolina +6.5 Points