Hurley: Carter would benefit from Billy D’s coaching


Legendary St. Anthony’s (N.J.) basketball coach Bob Hurley Sr. witnessed how Florida coach Billy Donovan molded Mike Rosario into a productive team player.

And Hurley said Monday he thinks Donovan could do the same for Rutgers transfer Eli Carter, if given the opportunity. Carter, who is mulling between Florida and Maryland, arrived in Gainesville on Sunday and visited the Florida campus on Monday.

“Billy could certainly tighten up his game,” Hurley said. “When you play for a losing team, there is a different approach when it comes to shot selection compared to when you are part of a team with more talent around you. You don’t have to take on that responsibility. Eli can do more by doing less (shooting).”

Like Rosario, Hurley coached Carter at St. Anthony’s, watching the 6-foot-2 guard grow into a player who averaged just eight points per game as a sophomore to a standout who signed a letter of intent to play at Rutgers out of high school.

“Billy would like coaching him,” said Hurley, who described Carter’s personality as quiet. “He was a late bloomer for us. He loves basketball. He was in the gym all the time.”

Carter averaged 14.9 points per game as a sophomore at Rutgers before his season ended in mid-February with a broken leg.

“I think you get someone who can put it on the floor,” Hurley said. “He can get his own shot. He can get to the basket. He draws a lot of contact. He’s a little bit of a streaky shooter, but he has range (out the 3-point line).”

Carter shot 32 percent from 3-point range as a sophomore after shooting 35.3 percent as a freshman. But Hurley thinks that Carter could be productive with better shot selection in Donovan’s ball-screen offense.

“He can turn the corner,” Hurley said. “He can get by people. I think with (Scottie) Wilbekin, Mike (Rosario) and (Kenny) Boynton, I don’t think any of those guys could create (offense) off the dribble like Eli.”

Hurley said he hasn’t seen Carter work out since the broken leg, but has talked with his father weekly since the injury.

“I know that the cast just came off,” Hurley said. “I don’t see it as something that would set him back.”

Update: According to CBS/WFAN’s Jon Rothstein, Carter has canceled his visit to Maryland.



  1. I’m not as quick to label Braxton a non-factor. He could very well be the starting point guard after next season with Scottie a senior and Kasey an one and done. Carter is a 2 guard with an assist to t/o ratio of 2.1 to 2.8. And while we would love to have Carter on the team, I am looking forward to Frazier getting more minutes and settling in next year.

  2. Braxton’s problem isn’t with his physical abilities. My bet is he was underachieving on Billy’s Third Demand: Know what we are doing. When he learns how to play Billy Ball, Braxton will be a factor. But I will still take Eli, if he wants to play at UF.

  3. You can never have enough quality talent on your team and that is what Coach Hurley, a coaching legend in his own right, produces. It is very good for Florida that Billy has a connection with Coach Hurley and his players.
    Would love to see Eli on the team next year and qualified to play right away!!

  4. He will pick the gators.. next years team will be top 5 team.. people keep talking about Kentucky and how they will roll through the SEC and the country.. but the gators won’t back down and I think if Eli Carter joins us and doesn’t have to sit out a year.. we would be right up there and even if he doesn’t join the gators or he has to sit a year.. next years team will still be very deep and very very talented. Go Gators!

  5. Personally i think hes a gator !!!!! I think whats best for Eli is that he sits, lets his leg heal, and learn the offense in the redshirt year. Then in the 2014-2015 season we would have an elite and seasoned team with a deep bench