Runaway Rumble: JU dominates UNF for season sweep, 71-39
For the first time since 1971, Jacksonville University completed an undefeated home season, and they did it with an impressive 71-39 win over cross-town rivals UNF to complete a sweep in the River City Rumble Wednesday night at a packed Swisher Gymnasium.
Flagler wins slugfest to advance to Final Four
Flagler College's Jaizec Lottie was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches Division II All-American Team on Tuesday morning. Next stop: the NCAA Division II Final Four. Third-seeded Flagler will face second-seeded Northwest Missouri State in the Final Four on Thursday at 9 p.m. Jaizec Lottie had 29 points for Flagler, Derrick Ellis had 17 and Chris Metzger had 10, none bigger than his final two. Truman State’s final shot was a heavily contested look by Turner Scott that never had a chance.
Still dancing: Gators rally late to beat Virginia Tech in tourney opener
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)The Gators are still dancing. Florida came back in the second half and edged Virginia Tech 75-70 in overtime of their NCAA tournament opener on Friday afternoon. Tre Mann knocked down a 3-pointer with 22 seconds to play in overtime to give Florida the separation it needed to escape the Hokies. Chris Castleton had a spectacular game for the Gators, leading with 19 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks. That game will be shown on truTVFlorida benched sophomore forward Omar Payne for the opener.
Gators, Seminoles going dancing in March Madness
(AP Photo/Wade Payne, File)Florida and Florida State are going dancing. 7 seed in the South Region in the men’s basketball tournament and will open against 10th-seeded Virginia Tech (15-6) on Friday. Florida State (16-6) earned a No. The Seminoles lost to Georgia Tech in the ACC championship game last Saturday. The Gators are in a packed South Region with No.
Florida AD: ‘Encouraging signs of progress’ for hoops player Johnson
Athletic director Scott Stricklin said on Thursday that Johnson was showing “truly encouraging signs of progress” at UF Health in Gainesville. The Gators also announced that their next three nonconference basketball games would be postponed. “Keyontae Johnson continues to show truly encouraging signs of progress as he undergoes tests and further evaluation at UF Health,” Stricklin said in a statement. “This has been an emotionally taxing time for Keyontae’s family, friends and teammates,” Stricklin said. “Our hope is that everyone impacted will take an opportunity to process those emotions and regroup ahead of the start of the new year.”Games against Florida Atlantic (Dec. 19), Florida A&M (Dec. 20) and James Madison (Dec. 22) were all being postponed.
Former Ribault star Rennia Davis preseason All-SEC selection for 3rd time
On Tuesday, Davis, a former Ribault High star, was voted as a Preseason All-SEC first-team selection for the third consecutive season, adding to a legacy that has made her among the most accomplished women’s basketball stars in area history. Davis has started 92 of 94 games during her college career and has career averages of 14.9 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. Only two area players have been selected in the WNBA draft before — Keystone Heights' Monique Cardenas and Ribault’s Erica White. Davis is one of the best women’s basketball players in area history and a selection on the News4Jax All-25 team that honored the top players of the last 25 years. All-SEC First TeamAliyah Boston, South CarolinaRennia Davis, TennesseeChelsea Dungee, ArkansasRhyne Howard, KentuckyRickea Jackson, Mississippi StateN’dea Jones, Texas A&MKhayla Pointer, LSUUnique Thompson, Auburn
Gators cap basketball attendance at 2,200 per game for upcoming season
The University of Florida will cap attendance at 2,200 for the men’s and women’s basketball seasons due to COVID-19 safety precautions, the school announced on Tuesday. The Gators' schedule begins on Nov. 25 at the Mohegan Sun tournament in Uncasville, Conn. Their first home game is Dec. 6 against Stetson. Florida said it received guidance and arrived at the 2,200 number in consultation with UF Health. The school said that “concession stands, the Gator Sportshop, the restrooms, and concourses will all have new signage to help reinforce safety measures. The men’s basketball team averaged 9,738 fans in 2019-20.
Gators announce nonconference basketball sked, host UNF on Dec. 16
College basketball season is coming into focus and the University of Florida announced its nonconference schedule on Wednesday. The Gators will have nine non-SEC teams on their schedule this season, including a Dec. 16 game against the University of North Florida in Gainesville. Florida will also travel to Oklahoma (Dec. 2), Florida State (Dec. 12) and the SEC/Big 12 Challenge at West Virginia (Jan. 30). In addition to the UNF game at home, the Gators will host UConn (Dec. 6), Florida Atlantic (Dec. 19) and James Madison (Dec. 22). Florida opens its SEC schedule Dec. 29 and 30.
Sports world mourns death of John Thompson, but if not for fate, he would’ve likely died in Sept. 11 attacks
But while the world is sad over Thompson’s passing, he at least had 19 more years of living after nearly dying during the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. But Rome’s producer, Danny Schwartz, asked that he fly out a day later to accommodate the show’s schedule. Thompson told Schwartz that wouldn’t work and he was unhappy at the suggestion, but after Schwartz insisted, Thompson changed his flight. Ten years after that day, Thompson went on Rome’s radio show to reminisce, starting with a message Thompson’s assistant relayed to him. “Let me tell you something, if you’re ever in Washington, D.C., you look me up,” Thompson told Schwartz.
Best basketball prodigy since LeBron? Why Emoni Bates is such a big deal
With one unexpected sentence, Emoni Bates set the basketball world and Twitter on fire Monday afternoon. 1 high school basketball player in the Class of 2022, set off a national reaction of various emotions. Bates played his first two years of high school at Ypsilanti Lincoln High School. Another feeling was elation, particularly for fans of Michigan State basketball, who were understandably jumping for joy over Bates choosing to play for their school/team. pic.twitter.com/WdrG7R5tpc — SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 29, 2020Why Emoni Bates is a big dealMany pundits have called Bates the best basketball prodigy to come out of high school since LeBron James.