“He had a hip pointer and he was out for 10 days. That’s just mind-boggling to me. Ten days for a hip pointer? My daughter could work through that!”
In case you were wondering how frustrated Florida Gators head coach Billy Donovan was with now-redshirt senior guard Mike Rosario one year ago, his thoughts on one of Rosario’s numerous injuries last season pretty much sums it up.
For a player who led his original team, Rutgers, in scoring each of the two years he played in his home state (16.5 points per game), Rosario was expected to be an immediate scoring threat for Florida and a player who would ensure that the Gators never had a lapse putting points up on the scoreboard.
Instead, Rosario was a model of inconsistency in his first year at UF, which led to him playing just 14.4 minutes per game and averaging only 6.6 points (though he did shoot a career-best 43 percent from the field). It was his inability to be dependable off the court and in practice that hurt him the most because when Rosario did see time and played responsibly by not making mental errors, he proved that he could be effective.
“His biggest issue and number one issue is inconsistently,” said Donovan while referring to Rosario as a redshirt junior. “Not only on the court, everywhere he’s inconsistent. He’s not responsible. He doesn’t take care. Last year the guy missed 25 practices and five games. Just to give you an idea, Erving Walker in four years missed one practice. Kenny Boynton missed one practice in three years. And neither one of those two guys missed a game. This guy missed five games in one year – and 25 practices!
“I think he needs to understand the responsibility he has to school, class, [being] on time, doing the things he needs to do and is supposed to do. And then on the court, practicing, playing the right way. If he does those things, I think he puts himself in a position with his ability to allow me to play him more as a coach and get out of it what he wants to get out of it.
“For Mike, there was maybe this expectation of, ‘I haven’t practiced in 10 days, but I had a really good practice before the day we’re playing. Why am I not playing?’ There are 12 guys that are practicing every day. You’ve missed a bunch of practice. You’re not playing. Any time you’re putting my credibility as a coach with the other 12 guys in jeopardy, you’re going to lose that battle.”
The good news for Rosario is that he appears to have done a 180 in terms of where his head is at heading into his final collegiate season.
Read the rest of this story on Mike Rosario…after the break!
Continue Reading » Has Mike Rosario turned a corner? Time will tell.