« HOOPS: Extra Effort | Main | HOOPS: How to win at Rupp (and what it means) »

HOOPS: No. 3 Gators, No. 14 Wildcats tangle in SEC Saturday showcase

 

GAINESVILLE -- In advance of Saturday’s marquee matchup, No. 3 Florida coach Billy Donovan called No. 14 Kentucky “top to bottom the most talented team in the country.”

The Gators -- the lone undefeated team in Southeastern Conference play -- take on the Wildcats in Rupp Arena tomorrow night in primetime (9 p.m., ESPN College GameDay).

Kentucky starts five of the top nine freshmen in ESPN’s 2013 prospect rankings, led by double-double machine Julius Randle (15.8 ppg, 9.9 rebs) and the Harrison twins (Aaron, Andrew).

Florida’s coach downplayed the youth versus experience (UF starts four seniors) angle though, saying, “Those guys have played a lot of basketball against a lot of good players. Right now, everybody’s got about 24-25 games under their belt. Those guys certainly, all their guys have logged an enormous amount of minutes. They’ve grown, too. I don’t look at it like that. Maybe it’s different at the first game of the year. Right now at this point in time, you’ve got a very experienced team in terms of roles, responsibilities and what they’re going through.”

The Gators have dropped eight of 10 against John Calipari’s McDonald’s All-American factory Wildcats and haven’t won in (rowdy) Rupp Arena since 2007.

UF senior center Patric Young admitted, “We let one slip out of our hands last year (61-57). It would be really special to finally get one and not go my whole career not winning there.”

While expounding on Kentucky's talent, Donovan also acknowledged he is wary of UK’s size and rebounding prowess, calling it the “ultimate test” and “extremely important in the outcome in the game.”

“It’s an impressive stat. They get it back a little bit more than 41% of their missed shots,” Donovan said. “They do a great job on the glass. … Kentucky’s depth in terms of two guys on the bench with the same level of length and size and physical strength, it makes them a good rebounding team.”

Florida, in the midst of a 16-game winning streak and just one victory shy of matching a school record, hopes its staunch defense (No. 1 scoring defense) can contain Kentucky’s explosive offense (No. 2 in scoring). A win (very likely) wraps up the SEC regular-season title for the Gators and keeps them in line for a potential No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. 

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReSimonton

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

In Billy we trust!

No one cares, go cattttssss

Kentucky! Another team with top recruiting and not much to show for it.

Canes! Another team with…….absolutely nothing but a fan base who doesn't know when to shut up!

Gatordumb, no life or common sense, please continue

does anybody know what the candy canes are ranked right now? it's all about the U(nranked).

Sid talking about no life?? That's about as funny as it gets!

U r u, .333 U.

Basketball is a number 1 sport you dolt. just because your 2nd class school sucks at it, don't blame it on the ROWDY REPTILES! GO GATORS!!!

Great win at Rupp. This team is really special and may well go all the way. Billy D is a master.
Please excuse the sorry cane Moron who keeps posting here he doesn't know there is basketball going on they don't know hoops in the stinky Gables.
Don't do football either, the only team in the nation that won 9 games and is not ranked and not even close to being ranked. The nation knows anyone can win 9 games playing the scheule they do.
Canes at 9 wins and Gators at 4 wins are the same, unranked and irrelevant. Short lived for the Gators but a way of life for the sorry canes.
We will be back winning in football before the canes ever sniff an ACC ship game or become in any way in play for the playoffs.
In basketball we are who we are, one of the best teams in the country year in and out.

Oliver...football is THE #1 sport....there is not more than #1 unless you are one of those " every one gets a ribbon " guys. Loser.

Jlo, you open with the vandals....you MAY be back to winning before we sniff an ACC championship, but all you have to do is win 1 game this season to claim that. You cant even argue being in the sec is tough playing the east pansies and 1 hard game in the west....which you seem to drop every year. Undefeated feels soooooo good, but U wouldnt understand. Never will. Brag when you have an undisputed NC. Cant wait til sept....you know them vandals are watching georgia south C.C. film laughing saing " we gots next"! You have so many wrongs in your post, its gonna take me a while to correct them all. But , I usually get it done.

Using your math 9=4? We beat U and U lost to us, so unfortunately that makes us the better team. We didnt tie and your nOline made our defense look great. If we are the sorry Canes, what does that make u and the few teams U did beat last year? Better start harassing the vandals because they are coming soon. Didnt work with THE U but your an idiot , so wouldnt hurt trying.

Anyone could win 9 witb our schedule? Not the gators. Man you are wrong on so many levels. Im gonna need a degree in special ed to keep trying to teach you things. Dont know football? What? 5 BABY! We know more than your state funded 9=4 institution. dUmb F.uck! Even my wife laughs at your posts.

Ok, back to jlo...dont know basketball? Your kind of right there. I do know we won the ACC last year and thats beating most of the best teams in country. And thats just our conference. ACC,ACC,ACC....LOL!

C'mon, give me more to pick apart.... its fun for me.

39-6

Rubber, I dont understand why you keep posting that meaningless score? If thats all you have, why even waste the time posting? At least jlo has substance to his lies and insinuations.

The least you can do is defend your .333 record like jlo. " " but we have to play the seceasy and fsu,Miami,and georgia southern". See ,its easy.
Well at least you should go 5-7 this season with that easy ooc schedule for 2014.

Easy OOC schedule? They have to play #1 ACC FSU. Thats a guaranteed lose. They have one EVERY year. I guess gatorfans are the ones that came up with those stupid sayings, " you cant win them all". Or " you win some ,you lose some".

now that i think about it, 39-6 is NOT a meaningless score, but really sums up how overrated and crappy the U(nranked) truly is. I promise I will shut up now and focus on my own team's problems and hope we can win a bowl game and NOT get our asses kicked!

"You cant even argue being in the sec is tough playing the east pansies and 1 hard game in the west...."

I will get to your stupid statement in a moment but first let me be the first to express pity on you choosing to spend your whole Sunday afternoon until early evening posting manure on this blog. A truly sad excuse for a human being.
One sad sack that is oblivious to facts as well.
The SEC east had 2 teams ranked higher than any ACC team save FSU. Georgia was ranked higher that Coastal champ Duke.
Gators will play both Bama and LSU out of the west next year. The same LSU team the sorry canes and Golden Coward refused to kick off the season with.
So again it is shown you are talking out of your stinking arse with no semblance of reality.
A 9 win cane team is equivalent to a 4 win SEC team like UF, both get you no where. Now a 9 win SEC team will always be ranked. Crying and lying won't change that.
You bring up the 2013 cane team that won the ACC as some big accomplishment. Shows how little you have going for you that you have to grasp at every trivial thing and hype it up.
In basketball a "one and done" refers to a great player that plays college as a freshman and leaves for the NBA after just one year. Like Brad Beal did last year. In Miami a "one and done" describes the whole basketball team that had one year of success, one year winning the ACC championship, one year of making it into the dance, mind you limited success since they didn't win anything else and were bounced off prior to the final four, one year in the penthouse(by UM standards) and then.............done, not even an NIT bid. Irrelevant before their one year and irrelevant after.
No basketball at all.
No baseball success since 2008.
No football success in well over a decade.
Nothing else going on.
No wonder you Morons come here.

jls14234 you hit the nail squarely on the head!
GO GATORS! We'll be back in 2014 without trying to win in the toughest league with QB3. Now that says a lot about the GATOR NATION!

Oliver
Who or what is QB3?
I think we will definitively do better in football in 2014 and must say that every single team out there is "trying to win".
Please explain.

Jlo hit no nail....already explained the stuff he spews but like all gator fans, the never learn. At least he learns....slowly....but he can learn. I dont know how long it takes yall to put together a few sentences but it took me about 20 miThat stripsack nOline is gonna get muschamp fired.nutes out of my whole sunday to correct jlo and olley.
Yea, yall might.....MIGHT....get 5 wins with three easy noname ooc games, but with "deer in the headlights" muschamp, who knows. If that nOline isn't fixed driskell is gonna get damaged again and yohr new tebow will get much of the same. Love that new qb recruits stats. Lets see how he does with his oline blocking each other and the other one getting run over.

Jlo is very comedic with his pie in the sky predictions of gator football, you say you play Bama and LSU next year well there is two guaranteed losses and another is the vandals. Jlo will exclaim we were injured, we were young on the noline, driskell is a failure AGAIN and on and on and on. His dribble is quite sad but what could be expected from gator bait.

jls14234 QB3 = 3rd string quarterback (Skyler Mornhinweg)

Jls14234 panties eats her young.

Oliver, now I get what you were saying.
In fact you could argue that Skyler was the 4th string QB. Murphy had always been 3rd string and Brissett was the second string who left us in a lurch when he decided to transfer in the off season.
We had a lot of things go wrong last year kind of the perfect storm of Murphy's law. It is highly unlikely that we will get a repeat of all that bad karma any time soon.
This is obvious to anyone with half a brain and that is why the top ranked recruits came in droves from other schools like Tabor , Hollis, and Harris did.
Go Gators!!

good point on Brissett jls14234. I agree, if the Gators can stay healthy and not loose 1/2 their starters next season, they can be very competitive and in the mix for a championship.

Ollie Trojan, you are smoking the drapes, gator in the mix for a NC, bawahhhhaaa

no jack nuts..SEC...but yeah that too...of BTW...39-6

The comments to this entry are closed.