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Florida-UCLA meet (again for the first time for the last time) in Sweet 16

La-sp-florida-vs-ucla-20140316(Courtesy latimes.com)

GAINESVILLE -- For the fourth time since 2006, Florida and UCLA will battle in the NCAA Tournament. 

The top-seeded Gators (33-2) and fourth-seeded Bruins (28-8) will square off Thursday (9;45 p.m., CBS) in the South Regional Semifinals in Memphis, Tenn. (FedEx Forum) with a chance to advance to the Elite Eight. 

UCLA -- Pac-12 Tournament champions -- demolished 12th-seeded Stephen F. Austin 77-60 on Sunday night, advancing to its first regional semifinals since 2008. 

But Florida has been nothing but heartbreak for college basketball's most historic program. 

The Gators, winners of a nation's-best 28 straight, trumped the Bruins in all three tournament match-ups -- highlighted by Florida's back-to-back wins in the 2006 NCAA Championship game (73-57) and 2007 Final Four (77-66). 

Florida also topped UCLA 73-65 in the Round of 32 in 2011. 

The Bruins are led by first-year coach Steve Alford, who bolted New Mexico to replace the fired Ben Howland during the offseason.

UCLA is an electric offensive team (81.7 points per game, No. 12 AdjO according to KenPom.com) powered by sensational sophomores Jordan Adams (17.4 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 2.7 spg) and Kyle Anderson (14.7 ppg, 6.6 apg), but the Bruins must hope the fourth time's a charm to finally top No. 1 Florida and its ferocious  defense.

More tomorrow, but first the clip teased in the headline. 

Enjoy. 

 

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