Billy D on Barber

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When Florida faces Auburn tonight in a must-win game for NCAA Tournament hopes, a key will be keeping Auburn senior Korvotney Barber off the glass.

Barber, tied for second in the SEC in rebounding at 9.3 per game, overcomes his size (6-foot-7) with his tenacity, leaping ability and instincts around the backboards.

Could he have been a Gator? Florida coach Billy Donovan acknowledged there was mild interest from Barber, a Manchester, Ga., native. But it didn’t go very far.

“I don’t know what kind of interest he necessarily had,” Donovan said. “There’s a lot of guys we recruit and it didn’t necessarily go very far. It wasn’t like he came on campus and visited. But I really liked him out of high school and thought he had a chance to be a terrific player.”

Barber also had some interest in Kentucky, but wound up at Auburn instead. Imagine Kentucky with a frontline of Barber and Patrick Patterson, with Jodie Meeks at shooting guard. That would be a pretty tough team to beat.