Gameday: (5) Florida Gators at (8) Arizona

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!
Continue Reading » Gameday: (5) Florida Gators at (8) Arizona

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No. 12 Florida Gators vs. Arizona Wildcats

Location: Stephen C. O’Connell Center – Gainesville, FL [Capacity: 12,000]
Time: 7:00 p.m. (ET)

TV: ESPN/ESPNHD
SiriusXM: 91
Online Video: ESPN3.com
Live Updates: @OnlyGators

(12) FLORIDA GATORS ARIZONA WILDCATS
Head Coach: Billy Donovan Head Coach: Sean Miller
Record: 5-2 Record: 6-2
Conference: Southeastern Conference: Pac-12
Roster | Schedule Roster | Schedule

Odds: Florida -11; O/U 145

HOMEWORK

Need to catch up on the Gators before the big game? No problem. OGGOA has been here all season long compiling a ton of information so you can do your homework on the team before its next exam Wednesday night at 7 p.m.

Allen’s Alley: Previewing the 2011-12 Gators | The Countdown: 35-23, 15-1

Donovan on Rosario and Arizona | Room for improvement | Syracuse post-game

HISTORY and STREAKS

» Florida and Arizona are tied 1-1 in the all-time series with both contests played on neutral courts. Wednesday’s game is the beginning of a home-and-home series between the two schools as UF will play at UA next season.
» The Gators are 7-2 under Donovan against Pac-12 teams; the Wildcats are the first men’s basketball team from their conference to ever play at the O’Dome.
» Florida has won seven consecutive games against teams in the Pac-12.
» Arizona is 13-23 all-time against SEC teams.
» The Gators have made a three in 653 consecutive games dating back to Jan. 1992.
» UF has connected on 10 or more treys in all six of seven games this season, failing to do so only on the road against Syracuse. Hitting double-digit threes in six-straight games is the longest streak under Donovan.
» Florida has outrebounded six of seven opponents this season.
» The Gators are ranked No. 4 in scoring offense (87.6 points), No. 11 in scoring margin (21.3 points), No. 11 in assists (17.9), No. 15 in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.40) and No. 2 in three-pointers (11.6 per game) nationally as of Dec. 4. Florida is also 77th in turnovers (12.7) and 284th in free throw shooting (62.1 percent).
» UF has the second-best winning percentage against ranked opponents (.546) among SEC teams dating back to 1999-2000.
» Arizona upset No. 1 overall seed Duke in the Elite Eight of the 2011 NCAA Tournament.
» The Gators are the first ranked opponent the Wildcats have played this season.
» Arizona last played in the state of Florida in March 2009.

LAST TIME OUT

Florida and Arizona last met in on Nov. 28, 2003 at the MassMutual Classic in Springfield, MA with both teams ranked in the top 10. The Gators defeated the Wildcats 78-77 behind 27 points from Matt Walsh, who went 5-for-8 from downtown (all in the second half). David Lee posted a double-double, Anthony Roberson registered 15 points and Bonell Colas hit a game-winning layup with 7.3 seconds left thanks to a deft inbounds pass by Christian Drejer. UA was led by Chris Rogers (career-high 17 points) and Channing Frye (double-double).

INJURY/ABSENCE REPORT

FLORIDA
» Active: Junior forward Erik Murphy (knee)

ARIZONA
» Inactive: Freshman guard Josiah Turner (suspension)

PLAYERS TO KEEP AN EYE ON

FLORIDA
» Senior point guard Erving Walker (#11)…who is the longest tenured player on the team having appeared in 114 consecutive games with 53-straight starts. A shoot-first player much of his career, Walker has been tasked with distributing the ball and managing the game this year. He is the SEC’s active leader in minutes (3,398) and treys (231) but also ranks second in points (1,429), assists (414) and steals (132) as well as third in free throws (350). Walker is No. 6 on the school’s all-time scoring list, No. 8 in free throws made, No. 5 in threes made and No. 4 in treys attempted (604).
» Junior guard Kenny Boynton (#1)…who is a dynamic scorer and just the second starter returning from a year ago. Boynton is working on his consistency this season and is already shooting better than he has throughout his career (51.1 percent from the field and 47.3 percent from downtown). He is the best defender on the Gators and is often put on the opponent’s best backcourt playmaker. Boynton currently ranks fifth in the SEC among active players in points (1,134) and fourth in three-pointers (178).
» Freshman G Bradley Beal (#23)…who is starting at the three for Florida fresh out of high school. Beal was the 2011 Gatorade National Player of the Year, one of the top five players in the country, and is arguably the most talented player to sign with the Gators since Donovan took over. He is averaging 15.6 points and 7.9 rebounds while shooting 46.8 percent from the field and 69.4 percent from the line (second best on the team).
» Sophomore center Patric Young (#4)…who joins the starting lineup this year after being the primary frontcourt reserve as a freshman. Young saw action in all 37 games as a freshman, averaging 3.4 points and 3.8 rebounds in limited action. He opened the season with consecutive double-doubles and is posting averages of 9.6 points, 7.3 boards and 1.7 blocks per game.
» Redshirt junior G Mike Rosario (#3)…who is finally playing for Florida after transferring out of Rutgers and sitting out the 2010-11 season. Rosario scored more than 1,000 points in two seasons with his former team and averaged 16.7 points per game during his sophomore year. He is the Gators’ de facto sixth man and is seeing 18.1 minutes of court time each game, averaging 10.6 points while shooting 49.1 percent from the floor and 45.9 percent from beyond the arc.

ARIZONA
» F Solomon Hill (#44)…who is the reigning Pac-12 Player of the Week due to averaging a team-high 12.4 points per game and second-best 7.8 rebounds while shooting 48.4 percent. Hill has posted double-digit points in six-straight games.
» F Jesse Perry (#33)…who is averaging 31.1 minutes per game and has grabbed 73 rebounds on the season with 20 coming on the offensive glass. He’s blocked two shots in three games this season and has only fouled out of one game.
» G Kyle Fogg (#21)…who is third on the team in minutes (29.0) but second in scoring with 11 points per game. Fogg hits 41.4 percent of his threes and shoots an efficient 81.3 percent from the line.

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