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February 1, 2014

Gators play against 'standard' in route



Florida played itself Saturday afternoon and came away with a 69-36 victory. By now, you can copy and paste the rest of the numbers: 13 consecutive victories, an ongoing school-record 27th home victory in a row, now tied for the best start in school history at 19-2.

The Gators didn't actually play against themselves, obviously. That's a minor technicality. Texas A&M was in town, a team headed in the exact opposite direction as Florida after its fifth consecutive loss and overmatched from the time it went through pregame layup lines.

But in theory

"It doesn't matter who we're playing," sophomore guard Michael Frazier II said after a 20-point, seven-rebound day. "We're playing against the standard that we have at Florida. It's not about the team that's in the other jersey."

Makes sense given the overall state of today's Southeastern Conference. Maybe most noteworthy is the Gators pulled off Saturday's laugher without sustaining their best game throughout. Sure, defensively it was there. But Florida managed a 17-point halftime lead while shooting 1 of 12 from beyond the arc.

The Gators made up for it by dominating the glass. Texas A&M was out-rebounded by 30 and out-shot by nearly 16 percent on what was not a particularly ideal shooting day by Florida at 41.1 percent and 5 of 25 from 3-point range.

Statistics can be scribbled all over Saturday's game. The Aggies failed to score 20 points in either half and missed more shots (40) than they scored points. Their 36 points were tied for the lowest by a UF SEC opponent since 1950, and it took two late 3-point baskets against a lineup of three walk-ons to pull that off. Texas A&M hasn't scored so few points since 1955 against Oklahoma City, 30 years before the shot clock.

Don't expect Billy Donovan to play along.

"I don't think the stat sheet tells the whole story here," he said. "They missed a lot of shots. They missed a lot of shots around the basket. They missed a lot of jump shots. They had some decent looks that didn't go down. From an offensive standpoint, I thought both teams struggled to even make good looks."

Florida's top emphasis has been defense all season and the Gators lead the SEC in the category, a ranking that will only be padded by Saturday's historic low. The competition may not be there for Florida but the in-house standard will only rise if you listen to players and Donovan.

"Our league is not the best. I'd say the Big 10 or the Big 12, those two are really good leagues," senior center Patric Young said. "It's easy to say to go out there and be like, 'We've just got to do a few more things here. Just run the clock out. We'll win the game.' But to be great, to hold a team to 36 points, that's striving for greatness. That's fighting human nature. That's something we need to hold ourselves to every single night."

-- ETC. --

- Sophomore guard DeVon Walker did not play Saturday while dealing with a hip-pointer injury.

"I was only going to use him if we really needed him," Donovan said.

- For the first time this season, senior forward Casey Prather did not reach double-digits in points. There's a caveat. Prather did not start the game after missing Friday's practice with soreness in his ankle after twisting it Thursday night against Mississippi State.

Prather played 21 minutes and made 3 of 5 shots from the field. An added free throw game him seven points.


Official Basketball Box Score
Texas A&M vs Florida
2/1/14 4 p.m. at Stephen C. O'Connell Center

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
VISITORS: Texas A&M 12-9, 3-5 SEC
                          TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS
## Player Name            FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN
14 Kourtney Roberson... f  3-7    0-0    1-2    3  4  7   3   7  0  0  0  0  16
24 Antwan Space........ f  1-3    1-2    0-0    0  3  3   3   3  0  1  0  0  20
02 Shawn Smith......... g  1-7    0-2    1-2    0  1  1   1   3  0  1  0  1  27
05 Jordan Green........ g  0-2    0-1    0-0    1  1  2   1   0  1  1  0  0  19
21 Alex Caruso......... g  1-3    0-0    0-1    1  2  3   5   2  3  3  0  1  24
04 Tavario Miller......    2-4    0-0    0-0    0  2  2   4   4  0  0  0  1  13
10 Blake McDonald......    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  1  0  0  0   5
12 Fabyon Harris.......    1-5    1-3    0-1    0  1  1   2   3  0  1  0  0  24
15 Davonte Fitzgerald..    2-9    1-6    0-0    0  4  4   3   5  0  1  1  0  15
23 Jamal Jones.........    2-11   1-6    2-2    0  2  2   0   7  1  1  0  0  24
25 Kyle Dobbins........    0-1    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  0  0  0  0   1
34 Payton Thomas.......    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  0  0  0  0  0+
45 Dylan Johns.........    1-2    0-0    0-1    0  0  0   0   2  0  1  0  0  12
   TEAM................                            2  2
   Totals..............   14-54   4-20   4-9    5 22 27  22  36  6 10  1  3 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half:  7-23 30.4%   2nd Half:  7-31 22.6%   Game: 25.9%  DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  2-7  28.6%   2nd Half:  2-13 15.4%   Game: 20.0%   REBS
F Throw % 1st Half:  1-4  25.0%   2nd Half:  3-5  60.0%   Game: 44.4%    0


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
HOME TEAM: Florida 19-2, 8-0 SEC
                          TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS
## Player Name            FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN
15 Yeguete, Will....... f  2-5    0-1    1-2    3  7 10   1   5  0  2  0  1  23
04 Young, Patric....... c  2-2    0-0    5-8    4 10 14   2   9  0  2  2  0  23
00 Hill, Kasey......... g  1-5    0-1    2-5    0  3  3   5   4  2  2  0  2  25
05 Wilbekin, Scottie... g  3-8    2-6    0-0    0  4  4   2   8  3  1  0  0  29
20 Frazier, Michael.... g  6-15   3-11   6-8    4  4  8   1  21  1  1  0  1  33
10 Finney-Smith, Dorian    4-12   0-4    3-4    3  6  9   1  11  2  1  2  1  31
11 Edwards, Lexx.......    0-0    0-0    0-0    0  1  1   0   0  0  0  0  0   3
24 Prather, Casey......    3-5    0-0    1-2    0  1  1   1   7  1  2  0  0  21
30 Kurtz, Jacob........    2-2    0-0    0-0    0  1  1   0   4  1  1  0  0   6
42 Donovan, Billy......    0-2    0-2    0-0    0  2  2   0   0  0  0  0  0   6
   TEAM................                         3  1  4
   Totals..............   23-56   5-25  18-29  17 40 57  13  69 10 12  4  5 200

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 12-30 40.0%   2nd Half: 11-26 42.3%   Game: 41.1%  DEADB
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  1-12  8.3%   2nd Half:  4-13 30.8%   Game: 20.0%   REBS
F Throw % 1st Half:  9-12 75.0%   2nd Half:  9-17 52.9%   Game: 62.1%    5


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Officials: Doug Shows, Glenn Tuitt, James Barker
Technical fouls: Texas A&M-None. Florida-None.
Attendance: 12426
Score by Periods                1st  2nd   Total
Texas A&M.....................   17   19  -   36
Florida.......................   34   35  -   69
Texas A&M #21 fouls out  at 04:48

Points in the paint-TAMU 12,UF 32. Points off turnovers-TAMU 7,UF 11.
2nd chance points-TAMU 2,UF 25. Fast break points-TAMU 2,UF 4.
Bench points-TAMU 21,UF 22. Score tied-1 time. Lead changed-0 times.
Last FG-TAMU 2nd-00:24, UF 2nd-01:06.
Largest lead-TAMU None, UF by 38 2nd-04:47.


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