SIX BITS: LSU, Macklin, gym, NCAA honors, Tebow

By Adam Silverstein
January 16, 2010

**PLEASE NOTE: OGGOA is undergoing a server switch that began Friday night at 9 p.m. (EST). Should you have any errors, everything will be fixed and back to normal shortly. Thank you for your patience and for reading OGGOA!**

1 » Florida Gators basketball (11-5, 0-2 SEC) is looking to rebound from losing five of its last eight games as it takes on the LSU Tigers (9-7, 0-2 SEC) Saturday at 8 p.m. at home in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center. The game will air live on FSN. Both teams are winless in Southeastern Conference action this season, and the Gators have not defeated the Tigers since March 11, 2006. Florida trails the all-time series 60-37.

2 » Two things must happen for the Gators to get back to prominence, the team must regain its swagger and redshirt junior center Vernon Macklin needs to stay out of foul trouble. If this was not obvious enough from watching the team play its last two games, both The Gainesville Sun and The Florida Times-Union are happy to break it down for you. “He’s just got to be smarter with what plays he puts himself into and what plays he doesn’t,” head coach Billy Donovan said. The Florida coach also expanded on some of the team’s recent difficulties to the Miami Herald‘s Joseph Goodman. “The loss of eight really, really good players over the last three years has probably been more of an impact on us,” Donovan said. “I think our team would look a little bit different with Nick out there right now; our team last year would have looked a little bit different even with Maurice out there.” Even so, Donovan is not opposed to bringing in one-and-done players in the future to give the team enough talent to make the March Madness run it so desperately has been waiting for since back-to-back National Championships. Donovan is also trying to give the team a much-needed wake-up call.

Four BITS on gymnastics, Tim Tebow and other Gators sports after the jump!

3 » No. 8 Gators gymnastics (1-1, 1-0 SEC) is not a team used to losing, so falling 196.25-195.275 to the then-No. 9 Oklahoma Sooners in its first match of the season in Norman, OK, was a surprise. Though the team is young, it rebounded quickly in its home opener, squeaking by the No. 7 Arkansas Razorbacks (1-1, 0-1 SEC) 196.575-195.925 Friday night in the O’Connell Center. Though Florida fell four spots in the rankings after its loss to Oklahoma, this is going to be a team to watch all spring.

4 » Former Gators quarterback Tim Tebow and golfer Deb Richard took home awards at the 2010 NCAA Honors Celebration held on Friday. Tebow was named a NCAA Top VIII Award winner, an honor bestowed to only eight senior student-athletes in the nation regardless of gender or sport. The NCAA Silver Anniversary Award was given to Richard, one of six former NCAA student-athletes who were honored for their successful collegiate careers and ability to excel in their chosen profession after graduation. Richard was a member of a the team that led Florida to its first NCAA women’s golf National Championship in 1985.

5 » Speaking of Tebow, he and his mother Pam will be featured in an advertisement during Super Bowl XLIV paid for by the global non-profit Christian organization Focus on the Family. The ad’s theme is “Celebrate Family, Celebrate Life,” and it will be promoting a pro-life message by focusing on the Tebows’ personal story. Focus on the Family’s published mission is to “strengthen, defend and celebrate the institution of the traditional family and to highlight the unique and irreplaceable role that it plays in God’s larger story of redemption.”

6 » Florida’s club hockey team is about to compete for its first Thrasher Cup in 12 years of the tournament at the Savannah Civic Center this weekend. They will square-off in the tournament against Florida State, Georgia and Georgia Tech for the title. Check out this article from the Savannah Morning News for more information. Gators swimming & diving, men’s and women’s tennis and track & field are all in action this weekend competing in a variety of different events. OGGOA will have a recap of each team’s performance once their competitions are complete.

3 Comments

  1. To my loyal commenters – anyone whose commented after 8:30 p.m. on Friday (including myself) had their comments erased with the server switch. Every article is now safe to resume commenting on. Sorry for the issues, but we had to do a quick server switch. This will be explained tomorrow.

  2. Mr2Bits says:

    Alright, I’m back. Whew. We get some new supped up web servers so this puppy quits crashing?

  3. Mr2Bits – Site hasn’t crashed since we broke the news about the Florida Gators special uniforms for the FSU jersey. I will detail the reasons for a server switch in a post tomorrow. Only good things.

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