Even with two McDonald’s All-Americans already signed, Florida coach Billy Donovan has remained active in rounding out the Class of 2013.
According to SNY.com’s Adam Zagoria, Donovan watched five-star 2013 power forward Julius Randle work out this week in Texas. Randle is coming back from a foot injury that has sidelined him for most of his senior high school basketball season.
Donovan developed a strong relationship with the 6-foot-9 Randle last summer, when he selected and coached him for the US 18-under team that won a gold medal in the FIBA Americans championship last June in Brazil. Randle has Florida in his final six with Kenutcky, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma and North Carolina State. He is expected to make his decision in the spring.
On Thursday, 2013 UF signees Kasey Hill and Chris Walker both were named to the McDonald’s All-American team. Hill, a dynamic 6-foot-1 point guard, has openly lobbied for Randle to join him at UF. “We can run the pick-and-pop, the pick-and-roll,” Hill told SNY.tv last January. “It would be a perfect fit for us.”
— Donovan had a teachable moment with Florida freshman guard Michael Frazier during the Kentucky game. He was upset with Frazier after he threw up a bad shot early in the shot clock late in the first half against the Wildcats. It resulted in the floor being unbalanced for the Gators at the defensive end of the floor, and Kentucky forward Kyle Wiltjer took advantage by making an open 3-point attempt in transition. “It’s almost like a four-point swing, so to speak, so maybe you go into the half up 16 or 17, instead you go into the half up 13,” Donovan said. “So he just needs to understand it wasn’t a shot-clock situation, if the clock is down to six seconds and he’s caught with the ball, that’s something different, but to drive it like that is just something he needs to learn from.” But Donovan said the one play doesn’t discount the maturity that the 6-foot-4 Frazier has shown in games in practice. “Michael has played very well this year,” Donovan said. “I’ve got a lot of confidence in him, and as I talked about Kentucky’s freshmen, there’s going to be some ups and downs. He’s going to have to go through some real high points, obviously he started the Mississippi State game, he gave us a great boost knocking down his first three 3s, he went to the Marquette game and knocked down five 3s. But as a freshman, he’s going to have his ups and downs.”