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Highlights from #Gators basketball media day

Florida-topper By Mike McCall

Florida football got you bummed out? Allow the basketball team to provide a little distraction. The Gators held their media day today, and here are a few of the most interesting storylines (to me, anyway).

-Expectations are high again

Florida will enter this season surrounded by the highest expectations since the 04s left town with all those championship rings, and rightly so. The Gators return all five starters and add McDonald's All-American Patric Young to a squad that made it to the NCAA Tournament (losing its first-round game to BYU in double overtime).  

But UF coach Billy Donovan is doing his best to knock down the hype. Here's what he said today:

"You know the perception is, in today’s environment in basketball, where you have a team that went to the NCAA tournament and returns all five starters, the expectations and the perception is that you’re going to be really, really good. This is a team that needed a 75-foot shot from (forward) Chandler Parsons against North Carolina State. That needed a game-winning shot by Chandler against South Carolina. That needed a game-winning shot by Erving Walker at Alabama to get into the tournament. So the reality is that this group really hasn’t done a lot. This group really hasn’t accomplished a whole lot.”

Compare that to Parsons, who said the feeling heading into this year is "totally different" from 2009:

"I think our goals are a lot higher this year. Not getting to the NCAA Tournament my first two years, last year we were just like we have to get there. I think we are just worried about this Friday and getting our chemistry right, getting all the plays down and just coming together and becoming the best team we can.”

How good can they be? Parsons says he feels they have a team to make a run at a national title.

-Kenny Boynton says he's back with a refined shooting technique

The Pompano Beach native led the Gators in scoring as a freshman (14 ppg), but at times, he and backcourt partner Erving Walker struggled with shooting. Boynton finished the year at 37.6 percent, hitting 29.4 percent of his three-point attempts.

Here are some of Boynton's shooting lines from UF's final 14 games:

2-11 in loss to Tennessee
2-9 in win vs Miss St.
3-9 in loss to Xavier
2-7 in win vs Auburn
2-12 in win vs Ole Miss
2-15 in loss to Vanderbilt

Then, he went off for a combined 50 points in the Gators' last two contests, his first back-to-back 20-point games in four months. During the offseason, Boynton said he flew to Los Angeles to work with a shooting coach familiar with Donovan, and he's happy with his results so far, saying his mid-range shooting is much more consistent.

“Basically, I am releasing it more in front of my head where as last year I never knew when it was going to go in, I was just shooting it. Now I know when it is optimal and how long it is going. I think it is a better shot now.” 

Patric Young -Patric Young is a beast

The 6-foot-9, 225-pound freshman from Jacksonville looks like the kind of guy Urban Meyer would like to suit up on the football field. He'll see playing time at forward and center this year, and Donovan said he wants Young to focus more on rebounding and defense than scoring.

That's fine by Young, who said that's the role he wants to play.

"That's basically what I'm known for, is being a real physical guy who's going to come in there and do the dirty work," Young said. "I love contact, I do love contact. That's just what I think basketball is, it's a contact sport. So why not go out there and hit everybody?"

That doesn't mean he won't be a factor on offense. His strength (he says he's the strongest on the team) will be an asset inside.

"[Teammates] call me Karl Malone and Dwight Howard," Young said. "They tell me I need to stop lifting weights and do more stretching."

"I can probably bench [Erving Walker] once and just throw him out of the building."

Young is proving to be a quotable fellow, so expect to see a lot of ink spilled in his honor. And he made a splash shortly before leaving media day, taking an alley-oop and throwing it down with one hand. As one reporter said after the dunk, "I haven't seen that around here in a while."

-New players will make practices more productive

Last year, there weren't really any players to challenge Vernon Macklin or Boynton and Walker in practice. That's not the case anymore.Mike-rosario-200-021009

Macklin has to deal with Young, and the guards will be pushed by Rutgers transfer Mike Rosario, a  McDonald's All-American in high school. Rosario will have to sit out this season, but he's already having an impact on the starting guards in workouts.

"My main goal this year is to get stronger -- that's one of my weaknesses -- and just to work on my game, get better and make my teammates better," Rosario said. "I want to try to help the young guys out with my experience, help the freshmen get to where they have to go. I feel like that's my responsibility this year."

Boynton said Rosario's presence means he has to play better defense in practices, as Rosario can spot up from just about anywhere. He put on a brief shooting clinic for reporters Wednesday.

-Agents are on Billy D's mind, too

Agents have been a hot topic in college football this season, but they're a problem for basketball coaches as well. Donovan spoke about the issue Wednesday, saying the main problem is that during the offseason, college players want to keep preparing for professional careers, and because they can't do that with their college coaches, they have to go other places where agents could be lurking.

"I'd say it's probably as bad (as in football)," Donovan said. "It's amazing because I think in a lot of ways you see a lot of this pop up right now and a lot of people act like they can't believe it happens. It's been going on for a long, long time. I don't think there's anything to necessarily do about it in the sport of basketball until the Players' Association who's in charge of the agents, the NCAA and David Stern, if they could all somehow come together and resolve it."


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Another over-rated, over ranked GAtor team...

Given up on the football season already & turning to BB. Appears you"ve seen the light.

Is there a caption on that photo of Urban and Billy? How about, "Guess who is the bigger douchebag?"

When the Gators have two losses at this time of the season, many Gator fans do move on. Unlike the U, we don't accept mediocrity. Now if you Cane fans want to dish our BB program - Go for it...at least we have one that has won two NCs (back to back) and made the final 4 two other times. U can't say squat about that or your program. Btw-good luck with Kenny the stiff from our scrap pile.

The canes nation is strong. I guarantee a packed house for UNC after we win a close one at Duke.

Go 'canes!

Gator34, Gator fans don't accept mediocrity so they bail on their team? They also don't accept loyalty or confidence, apparently.

BTW, you may want to analyze the history of Gator football. Mediocrity was the norm, not the exception. And it is going to go back to the norm so get used to it.

Typical Gatard unfounded arrogance. Start the clock on when Billy D quits.......again.

Posted by: National Presser

The rest of the home Gator games will be sell outs. How bout dem canes? (((((crickets))))

Mediocrity be us. We be mediocrity. That's not me talking, Gatard trash. That is your legacy.

Apparently Gators live in Cane heads. Are the Cane teams so pitiful that blatant displays of envy for the Gator teams on this board are all they got? Sad, but amusing. Canetards used to annoy me somewhat, but now I just feel sorry for them.

Anyway, Gator basketball should be very exiting this year. A run at not just the NCAA tournament, but also the SEC title is very realistic. Donovan has built quite a team and finally has some depth. Tennessee and Kentucky will be looking up in the SEC East.

This is a UF blog and youre the 1 that brought up Miami
Worry more about the Gators instead of other teams
Dont you have text messages to send out or something?

Hurricane fans make me laugh. I suppose they are angry and insecure because they take after Randy Shannon. Win an ACC title lately?

Remember 'Canes, 2 National Championships are greater than 0!

Just like Gatard trash: history begins in 2005. Sorry, Gatard trash. You wallow in the past five years because it is all you have.

The last 2 bloggers bring up Miami.
Nice going you 2
Since when did this stop being a Gator blog?
I was hoping to come here and be updated on those Urbie "core values"

DUI means nothing to Urb
Underage drinking means nothing to Urb and now abuse to woman means nothing to Urb
Being a member of a gang and having those pictures all over the net means nothing to Urb
A real class act


Just like Gatard trash: history begins in 2005. Sorry, Gatard trash. You wallow in the past five years because it is all you have.

Posted by: National Presser | October 15, 2010 at 06:27 PM

The irony of a Cane fan saying this to any Gator fan WOULD be highly amusing if any Cane fan could understand why it is ironic.

Joe:

Thank you for all you did on while covering the Gators, I bookmarked and visited this site daily for the past three years because of the excellent work you always did.

Funny how these Cane fans paint you as a UF schill, while some Gaotr fans accused you of not espousing the message one conjures after imbibing large quantities of orange and blue koolaide. That's as good a sign as any that you did you're job very well.

That you were given the Heat beat after their prolific offseasn speaks volumes to your abilities. Good luck with that, hope it goes as well for you as I'm sure it will.

And the good thing is, in terms of college football, you can now let everyone know the team you hate most in the college football world is the University of Alabama!

Regards,

Brantley suuuucks. Gatard offense is really high-powered. I mean, they are ranked ahead of Vandy in the SEC. Wow.

The past 3 years? Naaaaahhhhh. Couldn't be. The Gators really look good post-Teblow.

Now, what was that about the return to your mediocre past? It always reverts to the mean.

You suck Gatard trash.

Douche in Pinecrest - SUCKIN' IT. I'M COMIN' TO CRAP IN YOUR KITCHEN.

WHERE ARE YOU, Blog Pig?

Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Because your players suck and your coach is a nutjob and your offense belongs in the Magic Kingdom.

Gatards suuuuuuck.

We are terrible--meyer is a joke!

We are going to lose at least 4 games this season and next year it's going to be worse.

When timmy left so did our football program.

ESPN U showed that numbnuts rainey stumbling around the sideline...what an embarrassement.

Fire meyer and hire gruden.

We have no playmakers. Our O-line is horrible. These "top" recruits suck.

I will no longer drink the Meyer Kool Aid that was due solely to Timmy. Without him, our crap team and even worse coaching is exposed.

Bring back the Zooker. He'll, maybe Douche in Pinecrest -COACHIN' IT could coach. He is as much a douchebag as Meyer.

Fire Meyer. Fire that buck-toothed inbred Foley. Our offense is now worst in the SEC. We suck. No playmakers.

www.fireurban.com.

Hey, fellow Gatards, at least we still have Appy State on the schedule but first we will have to endure the Georgia beatdown.

Final record: 6-6.

I guess we will return to our mediocre past. It is our destiny.

The Gators had to beg fans to come show up to see that?
Have faith FU fans, you get your woman killer back so you can stop using that excuse now
My Fighting Irish are going to destroy you in the bowl game this year

my fellow gators fans - how sad is it when your team loses three straight

This place sure goes silent when the not so mighty Gators start showing who they really are

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

UFelony exposed as a raging dumpster fire lit up for all to see.

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

Ranked #4 to start the season, not ranked at all once they played 1 real team and two freebies they choked away at home.

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

The Swamp has a two game losing streak!

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

Herrree pig pig pig, soooey! Nah, he's gone like his team's national title hopes. Off to his next Klan meeting I guess.

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

2-3 in the weak SEC East? wowzers!

LOL
LMAO
ROTFL

how many times did you all watch florida's o line fail to pick up the blitz and pouncey not even block anyone? i saw quite a few instances where he was just moving his feet looking for someone to block while brantley got raked. heres a thought mr grade oit a champion, how about make some adjustments on the line and take a defender out next to you so your fellow guards can pick up the blitz. how about brantley running more? please let brantley run more... its the only way we get our true talent at qb who is trey burton. addazio needs to step down to avoid being fired. no one graded out a champion this game. period

Pouncey took that $ from his brother so he doesnt care anymore
Its over and it shows

"By Mike McCall

Florida football got you bummed out?"

Nope, it has been entertaining watching the overrated Gators fall from 4th to, well, oblivion, just like their trolls.

They deserve EVERY SINGLE THING coming there way.

This was your HOMECOMING GAME?

No way!

LAUGHING MY ARSE OFF!!!

The mighty gators (tee-hee) lost to the cow bell people...at home! Are you f'ing kidding me?

They got beat by a team that doesn't have the forward pass in their offense...are you f'ing kidding me?

Brantley, you remember him, the heisman guy, can't throw an accurate pass over 5 yards.

Their running backs look like a bunch of munchkins who are scared out of their minds any time they touch the ball.

Crazy urban will NOT last the season...no way...no how!

3 straight loses--2 of those losses in the scary swamp...what a joke!

I implore all canes fans to be polite and wave to the gators as we go by headed to the top and them headed for their normal place--the cellar!

PS: Georgia is going to demolish the mighty gators (tee-hee)!!!

You are right! That was their homecoming game that they couldn't sell-out and had to call boosters to ask them to purchase large lots of tickets. It just keeps getting better and better as they get worse and worse.

Happy homecoming gators--flags will be flying at half mast at trailer parks all over north florida.

That bald spot on the back of Oscars head is expanding weekly. Rainey looked like he was having a blast with those 2 cell phones on the sidelines. That explains why those woman in the stands were crying

mike, we need a new subject and it better start off with some kind of breaking news about florida undergoing coaching changes. i ask everyone visit the website firesteveaddazio.com and read the article about the trolley situation. good points made from that story, however, that was presented after lsu loss

steve addazio is to florida football, what an iceberg is to the titanic

Pathetic football team with all those 5 star recruits,love it!

Don't blame Addazio because your players suck, your coach is a nutjob and your campus is a trailerpark.

Where is DOUCHE IN PINECREST - RUBBIN' IT?

Is he still lovin' it? Maybe he will lose that dopey ID.

"Gator Nation" exposed as the fraud we always knew it was. Empty stands, booing your players, turning on your coaches.

There is no Gator Nation. It was a hoax. Like Kaiser Sozhe.

First Meyer quit, now Jo?? Talk about the rat's jumping off the ship, UF is in a complete free fall right now!

I can't wait to hear the spin from Addazio on this fiasco!

P.S. "D" Bag was blowing up our blogs until about 7:15pm last night and then he suddenly quit! I wonder...

He suddenly quit! You mean like the Gators did as soon as Oscar said he quit then the next day he came back exposing himself as a liar. Now hes letting a woman killer back on the team that will take spots from guys that have practiced hard everyday for playing time but oh no, Oscar would rather that woman killer back

GO DAWGS! Send Meyer into retirement.

He will quit in you again.

Oscar cried during a homecoming game. This guy is just begging for a way to get out of his contract and end up in the UFL with his boyfriend the clipboard holder

the. goo
t

I'm a huge fan of patric,he's such a great player

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