Fastbreak: SEC-worst Missouri embarrasses Florida 64-52 in Columbia

If the Florida Gators on the roster Tuesday had any respect for head coach Billy Donovan, they certainly did not show it. Florida (13-15, 6-9 SEC) was embarrassed once again this season as the worst team in the Southeastern Conference, losers of 13-straight games, upended the Gators 64-52.

The Missouri Tigers (8-20, 2-13 SEC) dominated the visitors over the latter 20 minutes of Tuesday’s contest, outscoring Florida 37-21 in the second half while ending the game on a 24-5 run at Mizzou Arena in Columbia, Missouri.

Donovan had no choice but to sit back and watch as his team struggled on both ends of the court, combining poor shooting in every facet of the game with lacking effort on defense and terrible decision making throughout the contest.

“We really made a lot of, really a lot of poor choices, things that — to be quite honest — left me scratching my head,” Donovan said. “We had Kasey Hill reaching across the out of bounds line for a technical foul, an Eli Carter foul before the ball ever came in bounds while the game was obviously in reach, a Devin Robinson foul. Our fouling enabled them to get to the free throw line. With 13 minutes to go we’re in the bonus and we never really could take advantage of it. For us, we got to the free throw line 23 times, which is drastically more than we normally go, but certainly hard to win when you go 9-for-23. Even when we did get there, we weren’t able to capitalize. We just didn’t make enough smart basketball plays in the game.” breaks down Tuesday’s action with nine quick-hitters:

It was over when: Missouri guard Namon Wright bombed in a three-pointer with 4:16 remaining, pushing the hosts ahead by six and putting Florida in a deficit that it was unable to overcome. Wright, who averaged 5.4 points on 32 percent shooting entering Tuesday’s game, scored a career-high 28 points on 10-of-13 shooting, hitting 6-of-8 treys. The Tigers only increased their lead from there. “We didn’t really have anybody [who could cover him],” Donovan said. “Give him credit. He really got it going, shot the ball very well. Tonight, he was a hard match-up for us. We really didn’t have anybody who could stop him.”

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Gameday: Florida Gators at Missouri Tigers – Billy Donovan goes for win No. 500 with lacking team

Location: Mizzou Arena – Columbia, Missouri [Capacity: 15,061]
Time: 9:00 p.m. EST

TV: SEC Network (Matt Stewart, Darrin Horn)
Streaming Video: | Mobile Video: Watch ESPN app

SiriusXM: 119/191 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]

Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter

Head Coach: Billy Donovan Head Coach: Kim Anderson
Record: 13-14 (6-8 SEC) Record: 7-20 (1-13 SEC)
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Southeastern

Odds: Florida -7


Likely the last game Florida will be favored in this season, the Gators have a chance to get back in the winning column while providing Donovan with his all-important 500th victory on Tuesday night. Donovan, 49, who will be coaching in his 703rd game, has an opportunity to become the second-youngest coach to 500 wins, only behind the legendary Bobby Knight.

Asked on Monday to look back on his career and achievements – including two national championships and four appearances in the Final Four – Donovan deflected the praise (as usual) and gave a lot of credit to those that have been with him along the way.

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Missouri upsets Florida as Gators collapse late

Another close game, another upset loss for the No. 4/5 Florida Gators, which blew double-digit leads in both halves before falling 63-60 to the Missouri Tigers on Tuesday evening at Mizzou Arena in Columbia, MO.

Florida (21-4, 11-2 SEC) fell to 0-3 in games decided by three points or less this season while Missouri (19-7, 8-5 SEC) remained undefeated at home and now boasts a 15-0 record on its court (7-0 in league play).

The Gators held a game-high 13-point lead on the Tigers with 10:41 left in the game but committed six fouls and five turnovers over the duration of the contest while allowing Mizzou to pull off the come-from-behind upset.

Forward Laurence Bowers, whose absence was felt in Missouri’s 31-point loss at Florida on Jan. 19, led all scorers with 17 points on 8-of-17 shooting. He also grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds and proved to be a big-time problem for the Gators in the paint.

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Gameday: No. 4/5 Florida Gators at Missouri

Location: Mizzou Arena – Columbia, MO [Capacity: 15,061]
Time: 9:00 p.m. EST

TV: ESPN/ESPNHD (Brad Nessler, Jimmy Dykes, Holly Rowe)
SiriusXM: 91 | Radio: Gator Radio Network [Affiliates]
Online Video: | Mobile Video: WatchESPN app
Live Updates: @OnlyGators on Twitter and SportsYapper app

Head Coach: Billy Donovan Head Coach: Frank Haith
Record: 21-3 (11-1 SEC) Record: 18-7 (7-5 SEC)
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Southeastern
Roster | Schedule Roster | Schedule

Odds: Florida -5 | O/U 138.5


» Florida and Missouri played for the first time ever on Jan. 19 with UF picking up an 83-52 victory in the inaugural meeting in Gainesville, FL.
» Mizzou is undefeated at home this season (14-0) and beating SEC opponents in Mizzou Arena by an average of 14 points per game.
» Four Gators starters are averaging double figures in scoring. The Tigers have six players that score in double digits, all of whom play more than 24 minutes per game.
» Florida is 46-3 since the beginning of the 2011-12 season when holding opponents under 71 points in a game (20-2 in 2012-13).
» Missouri has scored at least 71 points in three-straight games and four of its last five.
» The Gators are 4-1 against top-25 opponents this season after going 3-5 against ranked adversaries last season with all five losses coming to top-three teams.
» UF is outscoring SEC opponents by an average of +22.8 points per game.
» Florida senior forward Erik Murphy (.500) and freshman guard Michael Frazier II (.506) are chasing school history and looking to become the most proficient single-season three-point shooter ever at UF (Kenyan Weaks – .508).
» The Gators are second nationally in scoring margin (+21.7), third in scoring defense (52.6), sixth in field goal percentage (.497) and field goal defense (.371), eighth in three-point shooting (8.9 per game) and assist-turnover ratio (1.42), 13th in assists (16.3), 16th in three-point percentage (.395) and 17th in rebound margin (+7.1).
» Florida is also sixth nationally in fouling, committing 14.0 per game.
» The Tigers are fourth nationally in rebound margin (+10.2), 20th in free throw percentage (.750) and 21st in scoring offense (76.5).

Read the rest of the Florida-Missouri preview with much more after the break!
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