With the recent indefinite suspension of Florida point guard Scottie Wilbekin, it would be easy to assume Braxton Ogbueze is kicking himself.
After all, had Ogbueze stayed at Florida for his sophomore season, he could have been in line to compete for the starting point guard job to start the 2013-14 season.
But according to Ogbueze’s older bother, Klem, Braxton is doing just fine.
“He doesn’t regret it,” Klem Ogbueze said. “He’s looking forward, not back. As a family, we look forward.”
Ogbueze left UF at the end of his freshman season due to lack of playing time and has ended up closer to home at UNC Charlotte. A Charlotte, N.C., native, Ogbueze played sparingly behind Wilbekin and Kenny Boynton at point guard as a freshman. The 6-foot-1, 182-pound Ogbueze appeared in 23 games, averaging 0.8 points and 0.6 rebounds in five minutes per game. His assist-to-turnover ratio was 7 to 10.
Klem Ogbueze said he doesn’t think Wilbekin’s suspension would have made a difference for his brother’s chances at UF coming into this season. Wilbekin also was suspended for the first two regular season games of 2012-13 for an unspecified violation of team rules.
“When Scottie got busted last year, Braxton still didn’t get an opportunity,” Klem Ogbueze said. “Maybe (incoming freshman) Kasey Hill will get his chance.”
Klem Ogbueze said his brother will definitely sit out next season per NCAA Division I transfer rules and will use the time to try to get stronger. He thinks UNC Charlotte is the right fit for Braxton.
“He’s excited to have the opportunity to play for a coaching staff that believes in him,” Klem Ogbueze said. “UNC Charlotte is not a program like Florida, but they have some pieces needed to be successful. They are going to push Braxton to where he wants to be as a player and in the classroom.”
– In unveiling the 2013-14 projected athletic department budget, Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley said that the $50 million renovation to the O’Connell Center will begin next summer. The UF board of trustees has kicked in $10 million for the project, with the rest of the money being raised through private donations. “The center has served the university well,” Foley said. “But it is a 32-year-old building and needs to be renovated.”
– According to a list compiled by D1Scource.com, Florida coach Billy Donovan is ranked 15th out of 351 schools in longest coaching tenure at one school (17 years, 2 months). Who tops the list? Jim Boeheim, who has been at Syracuse since 1976.
– ESPN.com ranked Florida 11th in its top 20 schools that produce the best players for the NBA.
– On the subject of NBA Gators, former UF standouts Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards) and Chandler Parsons (Houston Rockets) have been invited to Team USA’s minicamp this summer.