Rosario eyes increased role with UF
Published: Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 6:18 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 6:18 p.m.
Florida guard Mike Rosario entered his senior season with a goal of being more consistent.
Favorite movie: He Got Game
Dwight Howard will do — for the Lakers this year: “He's going to provide a big presence in the middle of the paint. That's something the Lakers needed, someone physical to move guys out of the way.”
“That's something that coach speaks about every day with his players, coming in and having the same mindset of working hard every day and being a consistent person,” Rosario said. “And that's in all areas, on the court and off the court.”
“I felt that I've been doing a great job of that the last two months.”
That consistency has paid off. Rosario will begin the 2012-13 season as a starter, after spending his junior season coming off the bench. How consistent Rosario stays on and off the court will determine how long he keeps the starting job.
“He has a better understanding level of the expectation here on him,” Florida coach Billy Donovan said.
Rosario was UF's leading scorer off the bench last season (6.6 ppg) but also missed five games due to back and hip problems. He came into the season fully healthy and in shape.
“I'm 110-percent healthy,” Rosario said. “It feels great because when you're healthy, the work shows on the court.”
This season, Rosario has big shoes to fill. As the third guard in a three-guard starting lineup, Rosario is replacing Bradley Beal, who left after one season because he was a projected NBA lottery pick. As expected, Beal went third overall to the Washington Wizards in last June's draft.
Beal averaged 14.8 points last season. Rosario has similar scoring ability, having averaged 16.7 points as a sophomore at Rutgers.
But Beal also was UF's leading rebounder at 6.7 per game. Rosario doesn't have to put up such gaudy rebounds, but he'll need to become more consistent on defense and crash the boards from time-to-time for UF's three-guard lineup to work effectively.
“I'm undersized playing (small forward),” Rosario said. “But that's something I've been trying to do every day in practice, rebound more and trying to get loose balls, trying to play that role.”
Reader comments posted to this article may be published in our print edition. All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.