Billy Donovan said following Tuesday night’s 79-66 win over Florida Atlantic that his team’s basketball IQ needed to get “a whole lot better.”
Making better decisions was the focus in practices this week heading into Sunday night’s matchup in Tallahassee with Florida State.
Donovan pointed out that his returning players have a combined asssit-to-turnover ratio of 57 to 56 through the first five games of the season.
“That’s way too much for a veteran group,” Donovan said.
Donovan said the coaching staff has charted shot selection early this season and that the Gators were hoisting too many challenged, ill-advised shots.
“We need to make better decisions with the ball,” Donovan said. “Shot selection decisions, passing decisions, offensive decisions. We need to have a better understanding of what our identity is and how we are trying to play and what we are trying to do offensively.”
* Donovan said that junior center Vernon Macklin will continue to play through his knee problems. Donovan said he met with Macklin and Florida trainer Dave “Duke” Werner this week. “(Vernon) doesn’t feel like he needs to rest,” Donovan said. “He practiced the entire day (Thursday), but that was coming off a day off. We’ll see where he’s at (Friday). I think with our frontcourt depth we’re going to go with where he’s at and see how he does.”
* Donovan said he feels like freshman center Patric Young looks more comfortable after some court awareness and fouling issues earlier this season. Young has committed just two fouls over his last three games after committing six in his first two games. “I think Patric is getting better and I’m also pleased that we were able to get more minutes for (freshman) Will Yeguete,” Donovan. Yeguete had six rebounds in nine minutes against FAU. For the season, Yeguete is averaging 5.8 rebounds in 10.3 minutes per game.
* Senior forward Chandler Parsons admitted he was “a little frustrated” when he went scoreless in the first half Tuesday night against FAU. Donovan pulled Parsons midway through the first half when he tried to go coast-to-coast after grabbing a rebound and drew an offensive foul. “I felt like I wasn’t in the flow of the offense,” Parsons said. “It was me not cutting hard, not screening enough. It was more me not playing the way I should play.”
* Parsons said he doesn’t wonder what would have happened if he kept his commitment to Florida State. As a sophomore in high school, Parsons made a verbal pledge to current FSU coach Leonard Hamilton. “I’m so glad I came here (to Florida),” Parsons said. “I was young and I made an immature decision. Nick (former Gator guard Nick Calathes) had committed to Florida and a couple of other kids I knew had committed as sophomores so I felt like I needed to do the same thing.” Parsons said Hamilton was understanding when he re-opened his recruitment. “There are no hard feelings,” Parsons said.