Gameday - UF vs. Arkansas


Published: Friday, January 16, 2009 at 5:08 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 16, 2009 at 5:08 p.m.

Arkansas (12-3, 0-2 SEC) at Florida (15-2, 2-0 SEC)

Tipoff: 2 p.m.

Site: O'Connell Center, Gainesville

Local Radio: AM-850

Local TV: Fox

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH

1. Kadji off the bench

Which Kenny Kadji will show up? The Kadji that had just two points and two rebounds in nine minutes against Ole Miss? Or the Kadji that was more active inside with 11 points and eight rebounds in 16 minutes against Auburn? Florida will need the latter from the freshman center because at 6-foot-10 and 240 pounds, he's the only player on the roster physically capable of matching up against Arkansas big men Michael Washington and Michael Sanchez.

2. Controlling the boards

Arkansas grabs 13.1 offensive rebounds in the league, fifth-best in the league. Florida showed signs of improvement rebounding the basketball against Auburn, but will face a more physical Arkansas frontline this afternoon. "They do it with length and strength around the basket, attacking the glass and they’re going to be in on the basket," Donovan said. "So that's going to be really important for us to try to contain."

3. Taking care of the ball

Florida was uncharacteristically sloppy against Auburn, turning the ball over 17 times. The Gators have surprisingly been more careful with the ball on the break than in their halfcourt offense. Florida will need to make crisp passes and avoid mental lapses that nearly cost the team a win in the second half Wednesday night.

4. Freshman jitters

Arkansas will start three freshmen (Sanchez is a redshirt freshman) in an arena that's considered one of the tougher places to play in the SEC. The crowd at the O'Connell Center could play a factor if the Hogs get off to a rocky start. Arkansas point guard Courtney Forston, a league freshman of the year candidate, turned the ball over four times in his first SEC road game Wednesday at Ole Miss.

5. Perimeter presence

After making eight of its first 10 3-pointers in SEC play, Florida has fallen into a shooting funk. The Gators have made just seven of their last 42 3-point attempts. Forwards Chandler Parsons and Dan Werner missed several wide-open looks against Auburn. Both will need to knock down more shots for Florida to stay with Arkansas for 40 minutes.

FLORIDA

(10-0 home, 1-1 away, 4-1 neutral)

33 Nick Calathes

Position: Guard

Year: Sophomore

Height/weight: 6-6/194

Hometown/Last school: Casselberry/Lake Howell

Stats: 17.1 ppg, 6.6 apg

15 Walter Hodge

Position: Guard

Year: Senior

Height/weight: 6-0/170

Hometown/Last school: Guyanabo, P.R./Florida Air Academy

Stats: 8.0 ppg, 2.3 apg

25 Chandler Parsons

Position: Forward

Year: Sophomore

Height/weight: 6-9/213

Hometown/Last school: Casselberry/Lake Howell

Stats: 8.6 ppg, 5.4 rpg

21 Dan Werner

Position: Forward

Year: Junior

Height/weight: 6-8/230

Hometown/Last school: Middletown, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy

Stats: 9.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg

23 Alex Tyus

Position: Center

Year: Sophomore

Height/weight: 6-8/220

Hometown/Last school: St. Louis, Mo./Harmony Community

Stats: 12.8 ppg, 6.5 rpg

Florida bench

No. Name, Pos. Yr. HT/WT

1 Eloy Vargras F Fr. 6-10/215 1.3 ppg, 1.3 rpg

3 Ray Shipman G Fr. 6-5/212 4.5 ppg, 2.6 rpg

4 Kyle McClanahan G Fr. 6-1/185 0.8 ppg, 0.4 rpg

11 Erving Walker G Fr. 5-8/161 8.7 ppg, 2.6 apg

24 Allan Chaney F Fr. 6-8/231 4.2 ppg, 2.4 rpg

30 Kenny Kadji C Fr. 6-10/245 5.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg

Florida coach

Billy Donovan (300-117 in 13 seasons at Florida, 335-137 in 15 seasons overall)

ARKANSAS

(10-1 home, 1-2 road, 1-0 neutral)

4 Courtney Fortson

Position: Guard

Year: Freshman

Height/weight: 5-11/180

Hometown/Last school: Montgomery, Ala./The Patterson School

Stats: 15.0 ppg, 6.5 apg

14 Stefan Welsh

Position: Guard

Year: Junior

Height/weight: 6-3/185

Hometown/Last school: Newport News, Va./Hargrave Military Academy

Stats: 13.1 ppg, 3.8 rpg

15 Rotnei Clarke

Position: Guard

Year: Freshman

Height/weight: 6-0/184

Hometown/Last school: Claremore, Okla./Verdigris

Stats: 11.5 ppg, 1.8 rpg

31 Michael Sanchez

Position: Forward

Year: Redshirt Freshman

Height/weight: 6-8/236

Hometown/Last school: Springdale, Ark./Har-Ber

Stats: 6.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg

00 Michael Washington

Position: Center

Year: Junior

Height/weight: 6-9/239

Hometown/Last school: McGehee, Ark./Genesis One Christian

Stats: 17.1 ppg, 10.5 rpg

Arkansas bench

No. Name, Pos. Yr. HT/WT

1 Jason Henry F Fr. 6-6/189 7.9 ppg. 3.6 rpg

2 Nick Mason G Fr. 5-10/160 0.0 ppg, 0.0 rpg

5 Montrell McDonald F Jr. 6-5/181 4.5 ppg, 5.3 rpg

10 Marcus Monk F Sr. 6-6/220 3.7 ppg, 2.9 rpg

11 Brandon Moore F Fr. 6-9/215 2.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg

12 Marcus Britt G Jr. 6-3/198 3.7 ppg, 1.8 rpg

21 John Paul Noland G Fr. 6-3/185 0.0 ppg, 1.0 rpg

25 Stephen Cox G Jr. 6-3/201 0.1 ppg, 0.6 rpg

44 Andre Clark F RFr. 6-9/218 2.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg

Arkansas coach

John Pelphrey (35-15 in two seasons at Arkansas, 114-82 in seven seasons overall)

STATISTICAL COMPARISON

Florida Category Arkansas

78.8 Points Per Game 78.7

64.2 Opp points per game 68.8

.492 Field goal pct. .458

.425 Opp field goal pct. .416

.348 3-point FG pct. .349

.339 Opp 3-point FG pct. .341

.682 Free throw pct. .650

+2.0 Rebound margin +7.3

7.5 3-pointers per game 6.3

6.4 Opp 3-pointers per game 7.8

3.0 Blocks per game 3.3

9.4 Steals per game 7.4

17.9 Assists per game 14.0

16.8 Turnovers per game 15.4

SEC SCHEDULE

Saturday's Games

Alabama at Auburn, 2 p.m.

Arkansas at Florida (Fox), 2 p.m.

LSU at Ole Miss (Fox), 4 p.m.

South Carolina at Tennessee (FSN), 6 p.m.

Vanderbilt at Mississippi State (FSN), 8 p.m.

Sunday's Game

Kentucky at Georgia (Fox), noon

Tuesday's Game

Tennessee at Vanderbilt (ESPN), 9 p.m.

Wednesday's Games

Florida at South Carolina (FSN), 7 p.m.

Ole Miss at Alabama, 8 p.m.

Mississippi State at LSU, 8 p.m.

Auburn at Kentucky (FSN), 9 p.m.

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