Location: Stephen C. O’Connell Center – Gainesville, Florida [Capacity: 11,548]
Time: 7:00 p.m. EST
SiriusXM: 84 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]
Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter
|FLORIDA GATORS||LSU TIGERS|
|Head Coach: Billy Donovan||Head Coach: Johnny Jones|
|Record: 10-7 (3-1 SEC)||Record: 13-4 (2-2 SEC)|
|Conference: Southeastern||Conference: Southeastern|
Odds: Florida -10
STILL NOT READY FOR PRIME TIME
Forward Chris Walker, despite joining the Gators during the mid-way point of his first season and being suspended for the first two games of the 2014-15 campaign, has played in 33 games at Florida. He may have been listed as a sophomore before this season began, but his first full year of actually being a college basketball has just passed.
And the results, at least to this point, indicate that Walker is far from the phenom many expected the day he committed to the Gators. In fact, he more closely resembles former UF center Patric Young, a freakish athlete who has a long way to go to be a capable college starter, let alone an NBA player.
“I just know I need to improve,” Walker said Monday. “I just need to come in every day and be focused and just work hard.”
Averaging just 16.3 minutes per game this season, Walker is doing little right. He only hits 48.6 percent of his field goals – despite being positioned around the basket – and is a team-worst 37.0 percent from the free throw line (he’s only drawn 27 fouls and made 10 gimmies in 245 minutes of court action). Walker is rebounding at a high rate with an average of 4.2 per game, and his ability to block shots has helped the Gators’ defense, though his inability to be reliable on pick-and-rolls and other sets has been a hindrance.