Gators a No. 3 seed in NCAAs


Florida center Patric Young takes a charge on Ole Miss forward Murphy Holloway during the first half of the SEC Tournament final at Bridgestone Arena on Sunday in Nashville, Tenn.

Matt Stamey/Staff photographer
Published: Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 5:35 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 5:35 p.m.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Winning the Southeastern Conference regular-season title turned out to be enough for Florida to earn a strong seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Florida will open play in Austin, Texas, as the No. 3 seed in the South Region against 14-seed Northwestern State.

Northwestern State (23-8) earned an automatic bid by beating Sam Houston State in the Southland Conference championships.

The No. 13 Gators (26-7) could face some familiar faces down the road. Opposite Florida's bracket in Austin is six-seed UCLA against 11-seed Minnesota. The Gators have beaten UCLA three times in the NCAA Tournament (2006 finals, 2007 Final Four, 2011 round of 32). Minnesota, meanwhile, is coached by former Kentucky coach Tubby Smith.

Georgetown is the No. 2 seed in the South Region and Kansas is the No. 1 seed. Florida played a half against Georgetown in its season-opener on the USS Bataan in Jacksonville, but the game was called with UF up 27-23 at halftime due to condensation on the floor.

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