Location: McKale Center – Tucson, AZ [Capacity: 14,538]
Time: 10:00 p.m. EDT
TV: ESPN/ESPNHD (Dave Pasch, Miles Simon)
SiriusXM: 91 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]
Online Video: WatchESPN.com | Mobile Video: WatchESPN app
Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter and SportsYapper app
|No. 5 FLORIDA GATORS||No. 8 ARIZONA WILDCATS|
|Head Coach: Billy Donovan||Head Coach: Sean Miller|
|Record: 7-0||Record: 7-0|
|Conference: Southeastern||Conference: Pacific-12|
|Roster | Schedule||Roster | Schedule|
Odds: Florida -1.5 | O/U 134.5
HISTORY / STREAKS / STATS
» Florida is 2-1 all-time against Arizona and 2-0 under Donovan. UF has won eight-straight games against Pac-12 opponents and are 11-9 all-time against the conference including 8-2 under Donovan. UA has lost three-straight games to SEC foes.
» This is the first time that two top-10 teams will meet in the McKale Center since 2004.
» Four of the Gators’ regular starters are averaging double figures.
» Florida has held five of its seven opponents to 49 points or fewer. The Gators have only given up 26+ points in a single half twice in 14 total halves this campaign.
» UF dominated in its season opener, holding Alabama State to just nine first-half points and setting a school record in the shot clock era for fewest allowed in a half.
» Florida is 32-1 since the beginning of the 2011-12 season when holding opponents under 71 points in a game.
» The Gators were just 3-5 against top-25 opponents last season with all five losses coming to top-three teams. UF is currently scheduled to take on seven top-25 opponents as part of the 2012-13 campaign and is already 1-0 in such games.
» Florida is second nationally in scoring defense (48.3 points), third in scoring margin (+25.3 points) and seventh in field goal percentage defense (.349).
» The Gators are second nationally in fouling, committing 13.1 per game, and 134th nationally in assists, dishing just 13.7 per game.
» Arizona ranks 10th in rebound margin (+11.4), while Florida checks in at 13th (+10.7) in that category nationally.
» The Wildcats get most of their offense from three starters that combine for 39.3 points and 9.4 assists per game. All three shoot better than 37.5 percent from beyond the arc.
» Arizona has four players that average 4.4-6.7 rebounds per game each.
Read the rest of the Florida-Arizona preview…more after the break!
LAST TIME OUT
Florida and Arizona put together a great wire-to-wire game last season with the teams finding themselves tied at 66 at the end of regulation after Solomon Hill received a questionable foul on a missed three-pointer and drained a trio of free throws with four seconds remaining. The Gators outscored the Wildcats 12-6 in the lone overtime period to pick up a hard-fought 78-72 victory at home in Gainesville, FL. Patric Young led the way for UF with a huge 25-point, 10-rebound double-double and did a great job of keeping his team in the contest with his energy and athleticism. Erving Walker scored the first basket in overtime (Florida never trailed from that point forward) and finished with 14 points on the evening.
WHAT’S AT STAKE / PLAYER TO WATCH
Concluding a tough three-game non-conference stretch with its second true road game of the season, Florida is looking to sweep Arizona in the home-and-home series that began last year. The Gators have blown out nearly every opponent so far this year but will be faced with a tough, young Wildcats team that has the benefit of playing at home. A victory for Florida would give the team a legit shot at finishing its non-conference schedule undefeated, something that has not been accomplished by the Gators since the 2005-06 season.
» Senior guard Kenny Boynton (#1) will be tested all night long in the backcourt as he goes up against a pair of guards that combine to score 27 points and dish 6.3 assists per game. Boynton will have some help in this endeavor but will still have to play a great defensive game. His opposition is also stout defensively, so Boynton is going to need to find his shot early or at least remain patient until it begins falling later in the game and not force too much.
Like the visitors, Arizona is undefeated on the season and trouncing opponents, winning games by an average of 20.4 points. The Wildcats have had some closer contests than the Gators have experienced but will still be facing their toughest test of the season when Florida rolls into the McKale Center. Arizona is shooting 40.5 percent from beyond the arc and is as well-rounded of a team as UF is likely to face all season long. The Wildcats hope to register a marquee victory before also having the opportunity to finish their non-conference slate without a defeat.
» Sophomore G Nick Johnson (#13) is one of two starting guards that has had an impressive start for Arizona. Johnson leads the Wildcats in points (13.6), assists (3.7) and steals (2.7) per game all while playing great defense and shutting down his opponent’s best backcourt player. He is one of two shooters that the Gators will need to contain throughout the game in order to have a shot at pulling off the road victory.
CLIMBING THE CHARTS
Boynton is in his fourth year entrenched as a starter for the Gators. He is quickly making his way up many of Florida’s all-time lists and is already first in school history in three-point field goal attempts (799). He currently leads the SEC in career points (1,690) and three-pointers (276) among active players.
1. Ronnie Williams – 2,090 points
4. Erving Walker – 1,777 points
5. Kenny Boynton – 1,690 points
1. Erving Walker – 4,358
5. Ronnie Williams – 3,898
6. Kenny Boynton – 3,718
1. Andrew DeClerq – 128
5. Erving Walker – 113
6. Kenny Boynton – 112
1. Lee Humphrey – 288
2. Erving Walker – 285
3. Kenny Boynton – 276
Field goal attempts
1. Stacey Poole – 1,578
4. Dwayne Schintzius – 1,407
5. Kenny Boynton – 1,378
Boynton is also approaching the top 10 in games played (15 away), field goals made (21 away) free throws made (38 away) and assists (59 away).