Beyond the arc: 3 takeaways from UF’s 104-54 win over N.C. A&T


Some observations following UF’s 104-54 win over North Carolina A&T:

— A big catalyst to UF’s win over North Carolina A&T was the combined play of point guards Kasey Hill and Chris Chiozza. In 21 minutes, Hill did a nice job of pushing the tempo (and even hitting a rare 3-pointer) in finishing with 7 points, 8 assists and 2 turnovers. Hill’s assist-to-turnover ratio through his first two games this season is 13 to 5, and though his shooting and finishing remains erratic, he’s setting up others for easy baskets. Chiozza, on the other hand, hand 11 points, 5 assists and 1 turnover in 18 minutes. Chiozza made three straight 3-pointers during one second half stretch, converting a 4-point play on one as he was decked to the floor. “He’s one of our better shooters,” Florida coach Mike White said. “We’re prodding him to shoot more.” Both point guards will continue to battle one another for playing time, but for now, it’s a good dilemma for the Gators to have.

— For those worried about Florida’s shooting after a 3 for 19 effort from 3-point range against Navy, the Gators were better against North Carolina A&T, going 15 for 29 from beyond the arc. It was just the ninth time since 1997 that the Gators made 15 or more 3-pointers while shooting better than 50 percent from 3-point range. Eight different Gators made 3-pointers. Forward DeVon Walker made 2 of 3 3-pointers en route to a career-best 15 point night and even center Schuyler Rimmer got into the act with a 3-pointer late in the second half to get the Gators to 102 points. Including the exhibition win over Palm Beach Atlantic, the Gators are 26 for 56 from 3-point range at the O’Connell Center. The big question is can the Gators carry that over to a neutral site this weekend at the Hall of Fame Tipoff Classic in Uncasville, Conn. It’s always tougher to shoot on the road.

— For the second straight game, Florida got a strong contribution from its bench. Florida scored 50 points off the bench against North Carolina A&T after scoring 32 points off the bench in the Navy win. Devin Robinson (15 points), Chris Chiozza (11 points) and guard Brandone Francis-Ramirez (10 points) all reached double figures off the bench for the Gators. “Those guys could probably start for a lot of other universities,” Florida forward Dorian Finney-Smith said. “I’m glad they are on my team. They bring a lot of energy.”