Beyond the arc: 3 takeaways from UF’s 71-62 win over Texas A&M


Some observations following UF’s 71-62 win over Texas A&M at Exactech Arena:

— Florida junior center John Egbunu is an asset when he plays with confidence and within himself. The 6-foot-11 Egbunu is at his best when he’s not forcing shots (only five attempts) and crashing the boards (10 rebounds). Florida needed Egbunu’s size and physicality inside in dealing with Texas A&M’s big frontline. Egbunu also had no turnovers, which is a step in the right direction, considering his decision making with the ball has plagued him throughout the season.

— Florida is continuing to take shots early in the shot clock. It’s a fine line that Florida coach Mike White treads between keeping his team aggressive and allowing his team to play with freedom on offense against when time and score dictates bleeding the clock. An example is when Florida forward Justin Leon launched a 3-point attempt just eight seconds into the shot clock with Florida up 65-55 and 2:33 remaining. Leon missed the shot, but fortunately, Egbunu got the offensive rebound and was fouled and made a pair of free throws to extend UF’s lead back to 67-55. “With time and score late in the game, with the double-digit lead, I didn’t like the last one Justin took,” White said. “Again if it went in, I would have said good shot Justin. Can’t contradict myself there.”

— Freshman forward Keith Stone and freshman guard Eric Hester combined for no points and two turnovers in limited time on the court. Stone did have a pair of rebounds, but has not made a shot since scoring a career-high 17 points off the bench on Jan. 14 against Georgia. Stone sat out two games with a viral illness, and it would be nice to see him get back on track late in conference play.