Beyond the arc: 3 takeways from UF’s 65-39 win over Virginia


Some observations following UF’s 65-39 win over Virginia on Saturday:

— Florida executed its half-court offense as well as it has all season. There was solid ball movement and player movement. Passes were crisp and made with a purpose. Florida found the gaps in Virginia’s vaunted pack-line defense and was able to finish close to the basket.

— For as well as Justin Leon played offensively against Virginia, the 6-foot-8 senior was also solid on the boards. Leon posted his first career double-double (14 points and 10 rebounds) and played tough inside throughout the game. Leon made three 3-pointers, but his three-point play on a runner in the lane as he was fouled started UF’s game-altering 21-0 run that began to close the first half and extended into the second half.

— The effort that Florida displayed on defense and getting to the foul line showed a team that was hungry to get to the Sweet 16. Florida didn’t take any defensive possessions off and was able to keep Virginia from making any significant runs. “I’m really proud of the defensive effort, the focus, the lock in,” Florida coach Mike White said. “Especially when we got up, I don’t know, say 16, we didn’t have a drop-off, and we’ve had that four or five times this year. We didn’t have it tonight.”