Florida coach Billy Donovan said Wednesday that his oldest son, William, will play basketball next season at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.
William Donovan, a senior 6-foot-1 guard at St. Francis High in Gainesville, earned Gainesville Sun honorable mention all-area honors last season after averaging 11.4 points per game. Like his dad, the younger Donovan is a long-range shooter. He made 78 of 204 3-point attempts last season.
“It’s a great school,” Donovan said. “Their coach, Steve Howes, came down to watch him play last season. He’s a great guy.
“Of course, being in Washington, D.C., it’s going to be a little bit longer of a trip for mom and dad. But I’m really happy with the choice he made.”
Men’s basketball is one of 21 Division III athletic programs at Catholic, a school with an enrollment of more than 6,000 students. The school has been visited twice by reigning Popes. John Paul II visited on Oct. 7, 1979 and Benedict XVI visited on April 16, 2008.
Catholic also has a strong men’s basketball tradition. The Cardinals reached the Division III Sweet 16 five straight seasons (1998-2002) and won the 2001 D-III national championship.
Donovan said his son did not approach him about walking on at Florida.
“I think he just wanted to forge his own identity,” Donovan said.
Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl’s son, Steven, is a junior walk-on with the Vols. Former Kentucky coach Tubby Smith has had two of his sons play for him in previous seasons with Kentucky and Georgia.