Gameday: No. 15 Florida Gators vs. Florida State

By Adam Silverstein
November 29, 2013

Location: Stephen C. O’Connell Center – Gainesville, FL [Capacity: 11,548]
Time: 7:30 p.m. EST

TV: ESPN2 (Mike Crispino, Len Elmore)
SiriusXM: 108/200 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]
Online Video: WatchESPN.com | Mobile Video: WatchESPN app
Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter

(13/15) FLORIDA GATORS FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES
Head Coach: Billy Donovan Head Coach: Leonard Hamilton
Record: 5-1 Record: 5-1
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Atlantic Coast
Roster | Schedule Roster | Schedule

Odds: Florida -8 | O/U 138

PRE-GAME READING MATERIAL

» Story: PG Scottie Wilbekin stepped up on Monday – in more ways than one
» Notebook: Updates on Florida’s injuries, Harris’s suspension and UF-FSU scheduling

HISTORY / STREAKS / STATS

» Florida has won four-straight against Florida State and lead the all-time series 42-22 (including 11-6 under Donovan). UF is 20-6 against FSU at home (6-1 under Donovan).
» The Gators have won 19-straight games at home in the O’Dome and 20 in a row against non-conference opponents.
» Should UF defeat FSU on Saturday, its senior class (2010) would be just the second in school history to never lose to its in-state rivals (2009).
» Florida is 4-3 against top-25 ranked opponents dating back to last season with all three losses coming away from its home court.
» The Gators are 59-8 since the beginning of the 2011-12 season when holding opponent under 71 points in a game.
» Florida is 0-7 dating back to last season in games decided by single digits.
» UF’s defense has started off allowing just 59.3 points per game through five contests, making it the stingiest in the SEC. Five-straight opponents have failed to reach 61 points against the Gators.
» Donovan is looking for his 16th consecutive 20-win season. Florida has him ranked sixth all-time in that category behind only Dean Smith, Lute Olson, Mike Krzyzewski, Tubby Smith and Jim Boeheim.
» Senior forward Casey Prather is just the third player under Donovan to score 27 or more points three times in a single season (Teddy Dupay, Nick Calahtes) and has already done so just six games into the 2013-14 campaign.

Read the rest of the Florida-Florida State gameday preview…after the break!

WHAT’S AT STAKE / PLAYER TO WATCH

FLORIDA
Dealing with injuries and suspensions all season, Florida is a bit closer full strength and will be facing its second major test of the season on Friday. It will be the first of four incredibly difficult games the Gators will participate in over the next couple of weeks as UF is scheduled to face No. 13 UConn on Dec. 2, No. 2 Kansas on Dec. 10 and No. 21 Memphis on Dec. 17. It is unlikely that Florida will be able to sweep that four-game stretch, so every single win against a quality opponent counts and that is exactly what the Gators need to pull off while extending their win streak over the Noles to five games.

» Senior center Patric Young (#4) struggled through Florida’s first five games but had his best appearance of the season on Monday while going 5-for-9 for 13 points in just 16 minutes. Young hit 3-of-5 free throws, grabbed three rebounds and also chipped in with a block and two steals. He is currently averaging a career-low (as a starter) 5.2 boards and is hitting just 48.9 percent of his shots (also a career-worst average). He will be counted to have a big game – at least defensively – against a tough competitor.

FLORIDA STATE
There is no question that the Seminoles should be insulted that they were not placed in the latest iterations of the top 25 on Monday. After thwarting No. 10 VCU 85-67 last week, FSU fell 82-80 to No. 14 Michigan – but it took overtime for the Wolverines to pull out the victory. Florida State is a quality team headed for the NCAA Tournament but certainly looking for its second signature non-conference victory of the young season.

» Senior F Okaro White (#10) has been beasting for the Noles in the early going, averaging career-highs of 14.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 1.5 blocks and 1.3 dimes. He is also hitting a career-best 58.5 percent of his shots and netting 82.1 percent of his free throws. Opposite of Young, White had his worst game of the season in FSU’s last appearance on the court, hitting just 3-of-11 shots and scoring only six points in 25 minutes. Will he bounce back or can Young hold him down for one more game? Decide how he will impact the game when you’re choosing from the best sports betting sites.

CLIMBING THE CHARTS

Young is one of three true seniors on the roster but is the only one moving his way up many of Florida’s all-time lists. He has played in 116 career games and will only add to his totals as the season progresses. Young (939) is also just 61 points away from becoming the 50th player in school history to reach 1,000.

Blocked Shots
1. Dwayne Schintzius – 272
6. Eugene McDowell – 150
7. Patric Young – 127

Field Goal Percentage (minimum 500 attempts)
1. Dwayne Davis – .641
4. Eugene McDowell – .597
5. Patric Young – .588
5. Al Horford – .588

Dunks (unofficial statistic)
1. Dwayne Davis – 168
5. Joakim Noah – 130
6. Patric Young – 118

Wins at an SEC school
1. Adolph Rupp (Kentucky) – 875
2. Dale Brown (LSU) – 448
3. Billy Donovan (Florida) – 420

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