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March 4, 2014

Gator Gameday: No. 1 Florida vs. South Carolina



GAME DAY LINKS: Seniors embrace final chance | UF-USC Game Day Thread

No. 1 Florida at South Carolina
Tuesday, March 4, 2014 - 7:00 p.m. EST
TV: ESPNU / RADIO: Gator IMG Sports Radio Network, Sirius 93/XM 199
South Carolina Gamecocks (11-18, 4-12 Southeastern Conference)
Streak: Won 1
Last Game: Defeated No. 25 Kentucky 72-67
PROBABLE STARTERS
POS. NAME (STATS) YR. HT. WT.
G Brenton Williams (led Gamecocks with 24 points in win against Kentucky) Sr. 5-11 172
G Sindarius Thornwell (shooting 21.4 percent from the field in his last four games) Fr. 6-5 206
F Michael Carrera (Venezuelan had 25 rebounds over a two-game span late last month) So. 6-5 214
F Mindaugas Kacinas (zero rebounds, one steal, four fouls in 16 minutes against Kentucky) So. 6-7 210
F Demetrius Henry (Miami native has fouled out six times this season) Fr. 6-9 215

Nebraska CornhuskersFlorida Gators (27-2, 16-0 SEC)
Streak: Won 21
Last Game: Defeated LSU 79-61
PROBABLE STARTERS
POS. NAME (STATS) YR. HT. WT.
G Scottie Wilbekin (second in SEC in assist-turnover ratio at 2.1) Sr. 6-2 176
G Michael Frazier II (only Marshall Henderson has made more 3s in the SEC) So. 6-4 199
F Casey Prather (bounced back from a 1 for 5 Vandy game with 14 against LSU) Sr. 6-6 212
F Will Yeguete (called for 17 fouls in last five games) Sr. 6-8 230
C Patric Young (played fewer than 25 minutes for the eighth time in SEC play Saturday) Sr. 6-9 240




Don't foul Brenton Williams
1

If you took one thing away from South Carolina's upset of Kentucky Saturday, it's probably that the senior guard can take advantage of charity when it's offered. Of William's 24 points, 15 came at the free-throw line. He has missed five free throws all season, leading the SEC in free-throw percentage. In fact, 23.4 percent of his points on the year are coming from free throws. Guard him tight, because he's also the Gamecocks' best scorer, but don't foul him.
Press and pressure
2

Florida opened SEC play against South Carolina back on Jan. 8 and displayed the defense that would help propel the Gators to their ensuing conference success. The Gamecocks committed 21 turnovers that day, run off the floor and unable to get the ball up the court during a 21-point first half. Tonight should be no different.
Stay healthy
1

South Carolina is the worst team in the SEC and what it did against Kentucky is more proof of the state the Wildcats are in right now than some kind of surprising Gamecocks surge. This is a team that lost its two previous games by a combined 24 points to Auburn and Georgia. Simply put, Florida should have no trouble winning this game. That said, the Gators are playing a team with nothing to lose and can't let one night damage the future.

Billy Donovan on approaching the subject of 18-0 in SEC play:

"There's still things out there in front of our team. There's still things out there. I think going into this last game against LSU, these guys putting their footprints on our program is a good thing. ... think those guys would like to take on those challenges and certainly for us the biggest challenge and all that stuff doesn't make a difference if we don't play well against South Carolina tomorrow night."
Prather on if USC's upset of UK sparked interest:

"We knew they were a good team from the first time we played them. We don't go into games taking teams lightly. We already were kind of aware of it whether they beat Kentucky or not."



Florida 68-52: This will be another test of how defensive the Gators are of letdown-type games. A six-day break is right around the corner and a meeting with their biggest rival is Saturday. Columbia will have an added buzz with the No. 1 team in town. Then again, we've seen this narrative play out too many times this year and it has always ended with Florida on top. No reason to believe any different tonight.




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