Beyond the arc: 3 takeaways from UF’s loss to UNC


Some thoughts following Florida’s 75-64 loss to North Carolina at the Battle 4 Atlantis on Friday night:

— Call Florida the gang that can’t shoot straight. The Gators were 26.1 percent from the 3-point line in the Battle 4 Atlantis (19-73). It would be easy to blame the backdrop at Imeprial Arena, but Florida is shooting just 29.5 percent from 3-point range for the season (36-122). I can’t remember a Florida team under Billy Donovan that shot the ball so poorly to start the season.

— After  16-point game against Georgetown, junior forward Dorian Finney-Smith had a rough final two games at the Battle4Atlantis Tournament. Finney-Smith was a combined 5 of 19 from the floor in a win over UAB and a loss to North Carolina. Give Finney-Smith credit for playing with a broken hand, but his play needs to improve for Florida to have any chance of turning things around moving forward.

— Chris Walker had one of those Bonifay moments, lofting an ill-advised 3-point attempt that clanged off the back iron in the first half, just because. This is a problem when you have a player who feels it’s appropriate to let one fly when his team is struggling just to try to show off his versatility to impress NBA draft scouts. Walker showed some fight at the end of the game with an offensive rebound and putback that cut North Carolina’s lead to 69-62, but his performance (4 points, 4 rebounds and 2 turnovers in 18 minutes) was again uneven. It’s going to be hard for UF’s coaching staff to continue to trust Walker if he hoists inappropriate shots. And trust translates to minutes on the court.