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Gator basketball news – delivered Brockway style

New UF commit Johnson projects as face-up power forward

There was no doubting the athleticism. When former Ripley (West Virginia) High basketball coach Evan Faulkner began working with newest UF commitment Chase Johnson two years ago, he could see his ability to run the floor, rebound and finish in transition. “He was a 6-(foot)-6 kid who was just starting to realize his future,” said Faulkner, now a graduate basketball assistant at the University of Pikeville in Pikeville, Ky. “A high-major athlete.” But Faulkner said Johnson demonstrated a strict work… Read More »

Preseason magazines high on Gators

The optimism for Florida basketball in its second season under coach Mike White is greater than it was at this time a year ago. Two major college basketball magazines have picked the Gators second in the SEC behind Kentucky, while a third picked Florida to finish third in the conference behind Kentucky and Texas A&M. The reason for high hopes? Florida returns four starters from a season ago and added graduate transfer 6-6 swingman Canyon Barry, who averaged 19 points… Read More »

O’Dome renovation remains on schedule

As Florida unveiled plans for $100 million in improvements in facilities last week, work on the interior renovation of the O’Connell Center is continuing to make progress. The O’Dome’s $64.5 million interior makeover remains on target to be completed by mid-December, according to Florida associate athletic director of internal operations Chip Howard. “Brasfield & Gorre are doing an outstanding job across the street,” Howard said.  “We meet with them all the time, a couple times a week. They continue to… Read More »

Murphy gets 6th year, will play at Northeastern

Former Florida forward Alex Murphy has been granted a sixth year by the NCAA and will play next season at Northeastern. The NCAA approved Murphy’s sixth year on Wednesday, ending a four-month long process in which the former Duke and Florida player had to produce medical records from both schools. Murphy dealt with a head injury during his first season at Duke, and sat out the majority of last season at UF due to a torn plantar fascia he suffered… Read More »

“Repeat After Us” a nice drive down memory lane

Florida’s 2006 and 2007 national championship teams shared a special bond rarely, if ever, seen in college basketball. The documentary “Repeat After Us”, which debuts Tuesday night at 9 p.m. on SEC Network, chronicles that bond from its origins through the journey of back-to-back national titles. Directed by Jonathan Hock, the documentary includes interviews from former Florida coach Billy Donovan, starters Joakim Noah, Al Horford, Corey Brewer, Lee Humphrey and Taurean Green and key reserve Chris Richard. The most interesting… Read More »

Florida to open at Arkansas in SEC play

Florida will start and end SEC basketball play on the road this season. The Gators will open conference play Dec. 29 at Arkansas (7 p.m. SEC Network) and finish up at Vanderbilt on March 4 (2 p.m., ESPN or ESPN2) according to the league schedule, which was released Tuesday. In between, Florida will play nine of its 16 conference games at the newly renovated Exactech Arena at the O’Connell Center. Florida’s SEC home opener is Jan. 3 against Ole Miss… Read More »

UF 2017 commits in Top 100

ESPN unveiled its most recent recruiting rankings for the 2017 class on Wednesday. The good news? A pair of current Gator commits made the top 100. Point guard Shai Alexnander (6-5, 175 pounds) is ranked 44th in the nation in ESPN’s Top 100, while swingman DeAundrae Ballard (6-6, 195 pounds) is ranked 65th. Florida coach Mike White’s second recruiting class is shaping up to be stronger than his first, provided the commits keep their word and sign in November. The… Read More »

Four-star PFs visiting UF the same weekend

Florida picked an ideal weekend to host a pair of top power forward prospects in the Class of 2017 Four-star forwards Xavier Tillman and Lance Thomas will both take official visits to UF the weekend of Sept. 9-11. That coincides with UF’s 2006-07 basketball national title reunion. The back-to-back national title teams will be honored during UF’s football game against Kentucky on Sept. 10. Tillman (6-foot-8, 230 pounds), a four-star prospect from Grand Rapids, Mich., has Florida in his final… Read More »

Gators getting visit from 2017 big man

Florida has lined up an official visit from a 2017 four-star big man over Labor Day Weekend. According to Rivals.com’s Russ Wood, 6-foot-9, 220-pound center Ejike Obinna will visit the UF the weekend of its football opener against Massachusetts on Sept. 3. Per 24.7.com, Obinna is the 16th ranked center in the Class of 2016 and 160th overall prospect. A Virginia Academy standout from Ashburn, Va., Obinna also has offers from Vanderbilt, Oklahoma, Clemson and Virginia Tech. The Gators are… Read More »

Next act for Corey Brewer, 04s — giving back

Corey Brewer was part of the best teams in Florida basketball history — back-to-back national title squads in 2006 and 2007 that won based on values of sharing the basketball and working together on both ends of the floor to achieve a common goal. So it stands to reason that the key players from those Gator teams would become philanthropic. Brewer is back in Gainesville this week for his seventh annual Back 2 Back Youth Basketball camp, with proceeds in… Read More »