UF's junior center to run post

Florida Gators center Patric Young poses for a photo during basketball media day on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012 in Gainesville, Fla.

Matt Stamey/Staff photographer
Published: Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 11:55 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 11:55 a.m.

Florida junior center Patric Young heard plenty of suggestions during the offseason. Most of them centered around expanding his offensive game.


Patric Young

Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 249
Favorite Movie: Taken 2
Dwight Howard is going to do — Lakers this year: “He'll be defensive player of the year again. He will lead the Lakers to the NBA championship games, but they won't beat the Heat.”

But Florida coach Billy Donovan had different advice for Young. Rather than adding post moves, Donovan wanted the chiseled big man to focus on getting into the best shape of his life.

The reason? By running the court more consistently, Young could ensure getting deep post position each and every time down the floor.

“I know nobody can stop me if I'm really determined to get that position in the post,” Young said. “When I do get it, just making a simple move and if they cut that off I don't need five or six other moves, I just need one counter move. And I know I'm explosive enough as a big man that no one is going to block my shot.”

Young had an up-and-down first season as a starter for the Gators last season. He posted doubles-doubles in his first two games, including a 13-point, 12-rebound effort over former Ohio State center Jared Sullinger. But nagging foot tendinitis bothered Young from January until the end of the season. He posted just two more double-doubles the rest of the season and finished the year averaging 10.2 points and 6.4 rebounds.

Young said he didn't work specifically on rebounding during the offseason, but thinks the conditioning will help him get to more balls outside of his area.

“That goes back to the conditioning part Coach Donovan has been stressing,” Young said. “If I can be able to push through the times when I'm tired … and can keep that consistently, it will just help our team so much more.

“The key is doing it every single time. The guy may stay with you five, six, seven times but as the game keeps going on and it's time for you to push through that fatigue and have that willpower, he's going to break.”

A three-week bout with mono kept Young sidelined during individual workouts in September, but teammates say he is back to 100 percent.

“He's a beast,” Florida junior point guard Scottie Wilbekin said. “He'll always be a beast for us.”

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