Posted: 9:48 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2013
All eyes were on Gainesville, Tuesday, as the 19th ranked Florida Gators took down Andrew Wiggins and 13th ranked Kansas. Coming into the game, the Gators were yet to be tested by a legitimate Final Four contender, but scrappy defense and efficient shooting helped the Gators hand the Jayhawks their second straight loss, after Kansas was heartbroken on a last second buzzer-beater at Colorado December 7th.
A slow start didn't phase Florida as the Gator defense ignited the team to a 21-0 run and 36-21 lead after the first half. Scottie Wilbekin may have played his best game as a Gator, as he led the way with 18 points, 4 steals and 6 assists. The cherry on top may have been Patric Young's intensity and focus in the paint. Gator fans have been searching for answers after Young's inconsistent junior campaign, but Young answered with 12 points and 6 rebounds. Young displayed a variety offensive moves in the post, dominance on the boards, and was the centerpiece of the defense. Dorian Finney-Smith, off the bench, also had a big game with a solid 15 points and 5 rebounds.
Andrew Wiggins, the number one overall player in last years recruiting cycle, did not disappoint. Wiggins led Kansas with 26 points and 11 rebounds, but was contained enough for the Gators to take advantage of Kansas' offensive imbalance. Kansas committed 23 turnovers (16 of which were in the first half) and shot a measly 44.2 percent from the field.
The Gators look forward to hosting 16th ranked Memphis before beginning SEC play on January 8th vs South Carolina. With an already impressive resume, one can only wonder what this Florida team can accomplish with an experienced Pat Young, polished Scottie Wilbekin, and improved Kasey Hill.