Even with two McDonald’s All-Americans already signed, Florida coach Billy Donovan has remained active in rounding out the Class of 2013.
According to SNY.com’s Adam Zagoria, Donovan watched five-star 2013 power forward Julius Randle work out this week in Texas. Randle is coming back from a foot injury that has sidelined him for most of his senior high school basketball season.
Donovan developed a strong relationship with the 6-foot-9 Randle last summer, when he selected and coached him for the US 18-under team that won a gold medal in the FIBA Americans championship last June in Brazil. Randle has Florida in his final six with Kenutcky, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma and North Carolina State. He is expected to make his decision in the spring.
On Thursday, 2013 UF signees Kasey Hill and Chris Walker both were named to the McDonald’s All-American team. Hill, a dynamic 6-foot-1 point guard, has openly lobbied for Randle to join him at UF. “We can run the pick-and-pop, the pick-and-roll,” Hill told SNY.tv last January. “It would be a perfect fit for us.”
— Donovan had a teachable moment with Florida freshman guard Michael Frazier during the Kentucky game. He was upset with Frazier after he threw up a bad shot early in the shot clock late in the first half against the Wildcats. It resulted in the floor being unbalanced for the Gators at the defensive end of the floor, and Kentucky forward Kyle Wiltjer took advantage by making an open 3-point attempt in transition. “It’s almost like a four-point swing, so to speak, so maybe you go into the half up 16 or 17, instead you go into the half up 13,” Donovan said. “So he just needs to understand it wasn’t a shot-clock situation, if the clock is down to six seconds and he’s caught with the ball, that’s something different, but to drive it like that is just something he needs to learn from.” But Donovan said the one play doesn’t discount the maturity that the 6-foot-4 Frazier has shown in games in practice. “Michael has played very well this year,” Donovan said. “I’ve got a lot of confidence in him, and as I talked about Kentucky’s freshmen, there’s going to be some ups and downs. He’s going to have to go through some real high points, obviously he started the Mississippi State game, he gave us a great boost knocking down his first three 3s, he went to the Marquette game and knocked down five 3s. But as a freshman, he’s going to have his ups and downs.”
So glad Frazier did his sr year at Montverde.
getting Randle would be huge for this team.. the gators will be just as good next year if not better. With Kasey Hill replacing Boynton and Walker replacing Murphy, Frazier picking up where Rosario left off and hopefully P.Young will stay another year and the two really good transfers plus the returning players… that’s going to be one scary good team next year.
The squad looks tough. Getting Randle next year would make us NC favorites for sure. Go Gators!
Thanks for the update Kevin! I was wondering though, how is Randle even able to consider Kentucky when it appears they are headed into over-signing for next year??? With the news of all these 5-star players going there(6 committed now, i believe) and only 2 seniors, how does Kentucky expect to sign all these players and get Randle as well??? Even if Noel leaves(And now he may not), and Proythress(the only other player who might) they are still going to be over the limit….What is your take, sir? Thanks!
Other than Kansas & U.K., I can’t imagine WHY this kid would even consider the other programs. Florida has been to to 3 FINAL FOURS in HIS LIFETIME, and 4 in total, with the last 2 years, in the ‘ELITE 8′. So, I am kinda’ feeling Steve Spurrier’ish with Randle, if you wanna’ be GATOR, ”COME ON!” If not….”OH WELL, SEE YA!”
Final thought, the Gator’s need Frazier II to continue to learn the game situations, like Coach ‘D’ said, because this guy has some serious skills, & when the game slows down and the light turns-on for him (esp. on ‘D’) look out!!! GO GATORS!
It would be great to add Randle to this class. And Donovan has had so much success in developing forwards for the NBA, for long NBA careers. This young man would be the perfect addition to this class, and we need to refill that spot
KU would be the absolute best choice for Randle. He would get better prepared for the NBA by attending KU!