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Green, Brewer power Gators' rout of Alabama State

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Billy Donovan has coached some pretty good teams at Florida. Until now, none of them had started like this.

Taurean Green scored 18 points, Corey Brewer added 17 and the 11th-ranked Gators beat Alabama State 87-60 on Monday night to give the program its best start in more two decades.

Unranked in the preseason poll, Florida is 6-0 for the first time in Donovan's 10 years. Florida last started 6-0 in 1984-85.

"What does it mean? Not a whole lot to me," Donovan said. "What it really shows is the lack of basketball tradition here at the University of Florida. There's only two teams that started 7-0. That's mind-boggling.

"It's nice to do something that hasn't been done in 21 years. But it does not move you any closer to the goals you have," he said.

After losing their top three scorers and having four sophomores and a junior in the starting lineup, the Gators have been one of the biggest surprises in the country.

"We're excited to start 6-0, but we're not working to start 6-0," said forward Al Horford, who had 12 points and 11 rebounds for his second double-double of the season. "We want to keep it going all year."

Alabama State (1-5) hardly proved to be much of an obstacle.

Florida was bigger, faster and deeper than the Hornets. The Gators shot 65 percent from the field, had a 34-24 rebounding advantage, blocked nine shots and had six steals.

Lee Humphrey scored 13 points for Florida, while Brewer added seven rebounds and a game-high five assists.

The Gators opened the game with a 10-0 run, maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the first half and then pulled away.

"I don't think we were intimidated," Alabama State coach Lewis Jackson said. "Early on in the game we were just trying to hurry the ball and push the ball to make them run, but I don't think intimidation was a factor."

Green was 10-of-10 from the free-throw line and has made 24 in a row. He was 14-of-14 in the second half Friday night against Florida State.

"That's pretty impressive," Donovan said. "He has a good understanding of how to get fouled."

LaMarquis Blake led the Hornets with 16 points, and Cedric Mitchell added 13. Leading scorer Akeim Claborn, who entered the game averaging 16.2 points, finished with six after spending much of the night in foul trouble.

The Gators started 5-0 three other times under Donovan: 1997, 1998 and 2003. But in those years, the sixth opponent offered much more of a hurdle than Alabama State.

The Hornets have been one of the better teams in the Southwestern Athletic Conference the last five years but are a far cry from Texas (1997), Duke (1998) and Maryland (2003) -- the teams that ended Florida's other fast starts under Donovan.

Florida improved to 36-4 overall in November under Donovan, including 22-0 at home.

"There's something special about this team," said Green, who was celebrating his 20th birthday. "We're all together, all on the same page. We click on the court and off the court. We have good chemistry. Hopefully, we can keep it together."

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