Beyond the arc: 3 takeaways from UF’s win over Pittsburgh


Some observations following UF’s 61-45 win over Pittsburgh.

— After committing an average of 18 fouls in wins over Kentucky and Albany, Florida played with tremendous discipline on defense against Pittsburgh. Florida committed just 2 fouls in the first half and 7 for the game. The Gators didn’t commit their first foul in the second half until the 10:56 mark. That allowed Pittsburgh to stay off the free throw line and not get easy points.

— Florida coach Billy Donovan basically shortened his rotation to seven players for the Pittsburgh game. Freshman forward Chris Walker played just two minutes and returned to the bench after being beaten on a pick-and-roll play, and sophomore guard DeVon Walker did not play due to a coach’s decision. DeVon Walker struggled in the Albany game with 0 points and a silly foul on the press in 7 minutes.

— Florida senior forward Casey Prather has been inconsistent on the defensive end of the floor all season, but was effective in the Pittsburgh game with 3 steals and 6 rebounds. If the 6-foot-6 Prather can play that kind of defense the remainder of the way, it can only enhance UF’s chances of breaking through and reaching the Final Four for the first time since 2007.