UCLA: Florida Gators

Florida's balance overwhelms UCLA

March, 28, 2014
Mar 28
4:20
AM PT

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Scottie Wilbekin couldn't find his shot. Patric Young was out of rhythm, off-kilter, a half-step slow on rebounds and rotations. Casey Prather was unusually muted.

There were eight minutes left in Florida's fourth straight Sweet 16 game, and the Gators' three best players -- the 2013-14 SEC player of the year, a center with 147 games and 3,555 minutes on his legs, and its leading scorer and surprise All-American candidate, respectively -- were flailing. Young and Prather had each picked up their fourth fouls, and were stuck on the bench. Wilbekin was 2-of-10 from the field.

Worse yet, UCLA was rolling. Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson were pushing the pace, getting easy buckets, finding open teammates, playing the same beautiful brand of offense that led UCLA to its 28 wins in Steve Alford's first season. With six minutes left, Florida's lead was cut to 3.

So Prather -- chugging through an off night, stuck watching from the sideline, eight minutes away from maybe ending his career -- must have been at least a little bit panicked.

"No," Prather said. "Not at all."

To continue reading this story, click here.

Previewing the South Region Sweet 16

March, 26, 2014
Mar 26
5:00
PM PT
A look around the South Region ...

FLORIDA vs. UCLA

What to watch: An offense-defense matchup for the ages. The Gators are one of the nation's two or three best defenses. They enter Thursday's game ranked No. 2 in adjusted defensive efficiency (and sixth in pure points allowed per possession). UCLA is one of the nation's best, most efficient, most finesse offenses. The Bruins don't rebound their own misses or draw fouls, but they shoot so well that they usually don't need to.

Who to watch: UCLA guards Jordan Adams and Kyle Anderson are two of the nation's best players, and they may be the two most talented players on the court in Thursday's game. But the Gators have some talent of their own and are one of the few teams capable of throwing multiple matchups and looks (Scottie Wilbekin, Casey Prather, Will Yeguete, even Patric Young) at Adams and Anderson for 40 minutes.

Why watch: Can anyone stop Florida's march to the Final Four? With Kansas at No. 2 and Syracuse No. 3, the Gators' regional could have been as daunting as any other team's. Now it's up to the Bruins to halt Florida's machinelike run -- or leave it up to Dayton or Stanford on Saturday night.

STANFORD vs. DAYTON

What to watch: Statistically speaking, the two least likely Sweet 16 participants are also the most well-matched: Each team's offensive and defensive adjusted efficiency ranks overlap with the other. But that tells only part of the story. Dayton is a physical and athletic but largely perimeter-oriented team, while Stanford uses its size to hunker down and prevent easy baskets on the defensive end. Can the Flyers shoot over the top?

Who to watch: Dayton's guards and wings have earned the lion's share of praise in the lead-up to this game, and rightfully so -- Vee Sanford, Jordan Sibert, Dyshawn Pierre and Devin Oliver make the Flyers go. Which is why it will be so crucial that Stanford gets a good game out of point guard Chasson Randle on both ends of the floor.

Why watch: Neither of these teams is a true mid-major, and neither is exactly an underdog, either. Dayton is a basketball-obsessed town with a dedicated fan base, and Stanford is, well, Stanford. But basketball-wise, these are still the two teams making the most surprising runs of the tournament to date, and now at least one of them will reach the Elite Eight. That's March at its best, right?

Early Offer: Signing day is here 

February, 5, 2014
Feb 5
5:30
AM PT
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today’s offerings: The Class of 2014 will go down as one of the wildest recruiting rides in recent memory. With so many players switching commitments and some elite prospects still left on the board, here are five things to keep an eye on heading into recruiting’s biggest day.

Does Bama have the best class ever?

Recruit breakdown: Adoree' Jackson 

February, 4, 2014
Feb 4
9:00
AM PT
video This is part of a series on the nation's top uncommitted recruits leading up to signing day. Click here for the full series.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

A wild week for the West's best 

January, 31, 2014
Jan 31
11:00
AM PT
video
Plenty of attention will be paid to the West on signing day, as four of the region's top eight recruits are set to announce their commitments on Wednesday. That number -- which includes the top-ranked uncommitted prospect in Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra) -- dwarfs that of the top eight prospects in any of the other regions.

But before each makes a huge statement on signing day, all made some noise this week, as this region and the Pac-12 conference sets up for a very interesting day on Feb. 5.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Early Offer: Rose opens doors for MSU 

January, 16, 2014
Jan 16
5:30
AM PT
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today’s offerings: Michigan State has never recruited top-10 classes but has produced on the field, but now more doors might open for it with the Rose Bowl victory; Kansas State’s loss is about to be UCLA’s gain; and it’s been a good few days for the Florida Gators’ 2014 class.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Early Offer: Sharpe pushes decision back 

November, 21, 2013
11/21/13
2:30
AM PT
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: No. 2 offensive tackle David Sharpe was scheduled to announce his decision Thursday, but there’s been a delay; and it’s been a wild, wild week for fans of Pac 12 schools with USC in the national recruiting spotlight and UCLA and California making recruiting waves.


To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

Early Offer: Baylor's offense loaded 

October, 8, 2013
10/08/13
5:30
AM PT
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: If you think Baylor’s offense is explosive now, just wait until the 2014 class makes it to campus; USC enters the mix for four-star QB Brad Kaaya; and a longtime Auburn linebacker commitment is going to take all five of his official visits.

To continue reading this article you must be an Insider

SPONSORED HEADLINES

2013 TEAM LEADERS

PASSINGATTCOMPYDSTD
B. Hundley369248307124
RUSHINGCARYDSAVGTD
B. Hundley1607484.711
P. Perkins1345734.36
RECEIVINGRECYDSAVGTD
S. Evans4770915.19
D. Fuller4347111.04
TEAMRUSHPASSTOTAL
Offense196.6251.6448.2
TEAMPFPAMARGIN
Scoring36.524.112.4