Talking Florida Gators Basketball with weekly guests, features, game analysis and more. Giving a program that’s become a national power the attention it deserves.
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Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's rout of rival Florida State. How the Gators won their 3rd straight over FSU, and why Zyon Pullin was the difference in his debut. Plus, a huge preview of the Feast Week NIT, where the Gators will compete in Brooklyn this week. Why Pitt is a tough matchup, and one of the most important games Florida will play this year. Plus, a look at Baylor and Oregon State, who are lined up to play the Gators in game 2 at the Barclays Center.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down a tough loss to Virginia in Charlotte. Why turnovers did Florida in-- and why there were encouraging signs, even in defeat. Plus, a look at FAMU, who comes to Gainesville Tuesday, and a big preview of Friday night's rivalry game in Gainesville against Florida State. The FSU game will be the debut of Florida senior Zyon Pullin. As always, Florida Basketball is brought to you by the Gataverse. To join and get incredible opportunities to meet athletes and engage with Gator heroes all in a system designed to work the way NIL was intended, visit gataverse.io.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's opening night rout of Loyola-Maryland. Why the bigs were so impressive, Riley Kugel's improved game, and other thoughts on a great opening night. Plus, at minute 30- the guys preview a monstrous game against one of the nation's best programs in Virginia.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) are joined by Jake Winderman (CBS Sports) to preview the 2023-24 Florida Gators basketball season. As usual, this show features "Over/Unders" set by Jake and discussed on the show. Everything from Florida's leading scorers, biggest wins, best transfer, and NCAA Tournament hopes is discussed along with segments on the Florida bench, offensive efficiency, and much, much more. It's time for Gators basketball-- and for the 6th consecutive year, Florida Basketball Hour has you covered.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down SEC Media Days. Plus, a look at Florida's starting 5 as they ready for scrimmages and the start of the regular season. Finally, what to expect from Florida's potential breakout star, Riley Kugel.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) discuss the sudden retirement of Edge Jarvis, the Yale transfer expected to compete to start for the Gators in 2023-24. Why this hurts Florida's frontcourt in more ways than just "depth", and how it could change Florida's outlook in 2023-24. Plus, why the Zyon Pullin three-game suspension matters, and a discussion about summer league basketball for college players and why Portsmouth type events might be inevitable in the near future. Finally, the guys break down recruiting news, with the postponement of Sammie Yeanay's visit, the announcement that 5 star big man Jayden Quaintance will visit UF next week, and what the long game is as Florida continues to take big swings at star power on the recruiting trail. Florida Basketball Hour is brought to you by The Gataverse-- to learn more about Gataverse's custom made NIL experience, visit gataverse.io.
Florida Basketball Hour kicks off Season 6. On the agenda: Florida opens practice, Todd Golden's opening press conference, recruiting updates, Alex Condon buzz, and what to expect from Florida's star, Riley Kugel. Plus, the guys kick a fun College Basketball Almanac poll of coaches back and forth, including discussions about the league's player of the year, the surprise team, why it's so hard to play against Tennessee, and much more. Florida Basketball Hour is sponsored by the Gataverse. Gataverse offers an innovative approach to NIL that connects Fans, Athletes, and Merchants with digitial collectibles and player collectibles to verify community membership and grant access to exclusive privileges, VIP events, and memberships. Best of all? Gataverse is NIL the way it is supposed to work: putting the lion's share of money in the pockets of student-athletes. To learn more and join, visit gataverse.io.
FBH interviews Florida big man Tyrese Samuel ahead of the 2023-2024 season. Why the Gators' forward picked Florida, what he learned in his time at Seton Hall and playing in the Big East, his basketball journey that took him from Canada to Maryland, and beyond, and his goals for the 2023-2024 campaign. Plus, some fun with Tyrese about who has the most drip on the Gators, his favorite places to play why he loved Swamp Kings and more. Special thanks to Florida Victorious for helping make Tyrese available. Support other Gators athletes and NIL efforts at https://floridavictorious.com/.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) discuss Florida's new staff addition, John Andrzejek, who joins Florida from Kyle Smith's staff at Washington State. Why Coach Andrzejek is a great fit in Gainesville, and how it will benefit Florida's offense especially in 2023-24. Taurean Green's internal promotion is also discussed. Then, at minute 17, the guys begin a deep dive into some team and individual analytics. What key statistics say about the 2023-24 Gators and key roster battles. Among the discussion points are the backcourt time share and production between Zyon Pullin and Walter Clayton, the frontcourt battle between Micah Handlogten and Tyrese Samuel, and why Edge Jarvis will be a huge contributor, even if he's somewhat forgotten in "talking season."
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's non-conference slate. It's a smart schedule, but is it a top 10 slate? The guys discuss that and break down the trap games, the value of neutral floor opportunities, "must wins," and more. Plus, Riley Kugel shines at the Nike Academy, recruiting, and "first look" at Feast Week tournaments.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's busy summer. Where does Florida's transfer portal class rank? FBH breaks it down. Plus, what Florida's newest international roster spot adds to the team, the loss of John Bol and why it doesn't matter much, 2024 recruiting updates, and much more. Finally, Florida was 1 and done at the TBT, but it was fun seeing Corey Brewer shine. Why we hope this is just the beginning for Gataverse TBT teams.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) team up to discuss the commitment of Zyon Pullin, the No 2 ranked player remaining in the portal, to UF. What Pullin's commitment means for Florida's ceiling, why he might be best as a 6th man, and much more. Plus, Julian Rishwain isn't a 6th man! But he is a no-risk take. Finally, a lengthy chat about John Bol and recruiting, and why the commitment is so vital in a game about markets. Plus, Omaha!! The boys talk baseball and jello shots.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) breakdown Florida's roster to date. Will Florida acquire the additional guard this roster needs? A breakdown of targets Jaylen Murray and Zyon Pullin, among others. Plus, all your listener questions, including a fun closing discussion of the best glue guys in Gator history.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) talk Florida Gators basketball. On this episode, Jacob Rudner (Swamp 247) joins the show to give insider information on the Samuel commitment and discuss Florida's roster for the 2023-24 season, which is taking shape and seems poised for a NCAA Tournament run. Jacob Rudner also discusses why he's high on the Florida frontcourt, Florida's recruiting targets, the pursuit of Tylor Perry of North Texas and much more in a jam packed episode.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) on the return to Florida of star freshman Riley Kugel. Why Kugel's return was the biggest win for Todd Golden yet, and what it means as Florida builds its 2023-24 roster. Plus, Florida has Gael-winds behind their back in the portal, thanks to the commitment of Iona guard Walter Clayton Jr.. Why the MAAC player of the year is a ceiling-raiser for UF. Plus, Micah Handlogten gives UF another talented big: what to expect from the Sun Belt Freshman of the Year in Gainesville next season. Finally, a breakdown on the signing of Alex Condon and the case for Tyrese Samuel being the most important player on Florida's portal list. This and more on a jam packed episode...
Neil Blackmon of Saturday Down South chatted with Gators Great Mike Miller about the shot that changed Florida basketball, how hard it is to win in March, why young players should take a chance on trusting young coaches, his NBA experience, and more. Plus, hear Mike Miller's thoughts on the Final Four.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) discuss Florida's first commitment from the transfer portal- Yale forward EJ Jarvis. What to expect from the All-Ivy League forward, and why this is a good start for the Gators as they build a 2023-24 roster. The guys also answer additional portal questions, including the difference analytically between this year's 16-17 Florida team and Mike White's final group. Also discussed? A few of Florida's current transfer portal targets, and an optimistic update on Riley Kugel's future. Finally, the guys break down the Final Four. Why Miami-UConn might be the national title game a round early, and why Florida Atlantic should win at least one more time.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's loss to UCF in the NIT. What went wrong and how to evaluate that game in the grand scheme of Todd Golden's first season. Plus, we answer questions submitted by our Patreon subscribers. These questions are outstanding, from how to build a roster in modern basketball to what types of offenses we prefer or would run at the Power 6 level to potential destinations for Gators in the transfer portal, we enjoyed answering and interacting with our subscribers. Enjoy!
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's heartbreaking 69-68 overtime loss to Mississippi State at the SEC Tournament. What went wrong on the final Miss State possession, Florida's final shot, and why the Gators stagnant offense and bad free throw shooting nearly doomed the team before a stirring set of comebacks. Plus, is it time to reevaluate Alex Fudge and Kowacie Reeves? Finally, the guys break down Florida's NIT prospects, and praise Coach Golden for his competitiveness and desire to compete at the NIT.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's Senior Night win over LSU. How Todd Golden's switch to the press changed the game, along with the bench contributions of Kowacie Reeves and Niels Lane. Plus, the continued star turn of Riley Kugel-- breaking down his prospects for next season. The guys also pay tribute to Kyle Lofton and break down a spectacular offensive season for Will Richard. At minute 34, the guys break down Florida's SEC Tournament matchup with Miss State. Can the Gators contain State's powerful interior play without Colin Castleton? Will Riley Kugel lift the Gators past the school he committed to initially? Who is more motivated? A bubble Miss State team or a hungry group of Gators chasing an automatic bid? Finally, the guys discuss Florida's All-SEC honorees, including First-Team All-SEC honoree Colin Castleton.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's road win at Georgia. How Myreon Jones, Will Richard, and Riley Kugel paced an 8th straight win over UGA. Plus, signs of life from the Gators defense, and the merits of playing smaller as the season heads down the final stretch. The guys also preview Senior Night against LSU, and break down the challenges presented by the Tigers talented big man, KJ Williams. Finally, the guys discuss each of the new SEC hires, the value in playing in the NIT, and much more.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Kentucky's 82-74 win over the Gators on Wednesday night. How a brave effort from the Gators fell just short, and why Riley Kugel and Niels Lane gave Florida fans something to be excited about in defeat. Plus, a preview of the rematch with Liam Robbins and Vanderbilt, as the Commodores go for their first season sweep of the Gators since 2018-19. Finally, the guys discuss the dismissal of Kermit Davis at Ole Miss. How good a job is the Ole Miss job? Should Dusty May jump on the chance to coach Ole Miss if given the opportunity? This and more...
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's loss at Arkansas. How an excellent first half turned into a disappointing second half and a brutal day defensively for the Gators. The guys also discuss Riley Kugel's tremendous growth and ceiling. Plus, Gator big man Jason Jitoboh joined the show to talk about his comeback from an eye-injury and why his basketball story isn't just an inspirational one. Jitoboh discusses his favorite thing about being a Gator, how he became the Gator with the most "drip", his touch as an offensive player, pick and roll defense and much more. Finally, the guys break down Florida's matchup with Kentucky. Why Kentucky's offense isn't as bad as analysts make out, what ails Kentucky defensively, and why the Gators can win.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) are joined by Florida guard Alex Klatsky to discuss the Gatorverse, a Florida Basketball Hour partner and an an exclusive community dedicated to connecting University of Florida fans and student-athletes. Members receive access to exclusive autographed collectibles, real life experiences, giveaways, VIP events and rewards while Athletes receive a majority of revenue from sales of their collectibles. Rafi Goldman also joins to discuss the Gatorverse and the NIL Space and the group discuss how the Gatorverse will help Florida basketball, its athletes and other Universitry of Florida athletes into the future. Eric and Neil also break down Florida's win over Ole Miss, dive into the ramifications of the Colin Castleton injury on the Gators season, and preview Florida's Quad 1 opportunity at Arkansas on Saturday.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) discuss Alabama's rout of the Gators in Tuscaloosa. Will Florida squander a banner year from Colin Castleton and head to another NIT? What are Florida's NCAA Tournament hopes? Should we be concerned about Florida's backcourt after 2 tough games in succession? At minute 31, the guys discuss Florida's NIL situation as it relates to basketball. Why you should be encouraged, whether it be the Gator Collective, other ventures, or big money boosters committed to winning on the hardwood. Finally, at minute 44, a preview of Florida's game against Vanderbilt in Gainesville on Saturday. The Liam Robbins-Castleton matchup is discussed, as is the challenge of containing a quality set of Vanderbilt guards.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) is joined this week by Jacob Rudner and Graham Hall of 247 Sports to break down Florida's 72-67 loss at Rupp Arena to rival Kentucky. The trio also discuss Florida's final game in an epic 4 game gauntlet, which will see Florida play the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa. The Tide are seeking to become just the third team in SEC history to finish a regular season 18-0 in league play.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's huge win over No. 2 Tennessee. How Florida flexed defensively and snuffed out Tennessee's flex offense, the continued brilliance of Kyle Lofton and Myreon Jones, and what this win means for the Gators moving forward. Plus, was this Colin Castleton's signature game? Why has Florida's small lineup been so successful? And what we saw offensively that was encouraging. At minute 32, the guys preview Florida's visit to Rupp Arena and rival Kentucky. The guys talk John Calipari's archaic offense, defend Sahvir Wheeler, and break down the x-factor that is Antonio Reeves. Plus, why Oscar Tshiebwe and Colin Castleton are built to give each other trouble, and much more.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's 64-50 loss at No. 5 Kansas State. Keyontae Johnson, playing against his alma mater, poured in a double-double for the Wildcats. The guys discuss Florida's woeful offense, which has now produced 4 of the worst 10 outings in the KenPom era in 2022-23. What can be done to fix it, why it's more than just "missing shots", re-spacing issues and how Florida's actions aren't run crisply are among the topics visited. Plus, just how good is this Gators defense? The guys also discuss 2024 recruiting, Colin Castleton's case for SEC defensive player of the year, and other listener questions. Finally, a breakdown of Florida's upcoming home tilt with No. 2 Tennessee. Why the Vols defense is so good, the versatility of this Tennessee team, and the problem that is Zakai Zeigler.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's rout of South Carolina earlier this week. Discussion topics include Florida's great guard play, Colin Castleton playing the best defense of his career, a Niels Lane cameo, and Kowacie Reeves emerging from his shooting slump. At minute 31, the guys dive into No. 5 Kansas State, who will be Florida's opponent in the SEC-BIG 12 Challenge. Led by Markquis Nowell and of course, former Gators star Keyontae Johnson, they discuss what makes the Wildcats so good in year one under their new head coach, Jerome Tang. Can Florida pull the upset? Why Castleton's mismatch might be the key. Finally, at minute 50, the guys do a rapid fire preview- with predictions- of the SEC-BIG 12 challenge.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's 61-59 win at Miss State on Saturday night. Graham Hall of 247 Sports joins to talk about the victory. Topics include: the progress of Alex Fudge, a great scout of Tolu Smith by the Gators, Wacie sees the ball go in, and the continued impressive play of Florida's guards. Plus, Will Richard's development. The guys also preview Wednesday night's tilt in the O'Dome against South Carolina. Why GG Jackson is such a fantastic freshman, welcoming home Gators great Eddie Shannon, and much more.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's win over No. 20 Missouri and another heartbreaking loss to Texas A&M. What went right against the Tigers and wrong against the Aggies. How Florida can avoid a repeat of a 12-point half, and more importantly, score enough to take advantage of a sensational defense. How Buzz Williams stole a game with 2 key timeouts, and a good chat on Florida's final play, which felt doomed from the inbounds play. Plus, at minute 50- a preview of a huge road game at Mississippi State. Why the Bulldogs are better than their record, and how the Gators favorable matchups at guard may offset the Tolu Smith problem Miss State presents.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's home win over Georgia and road win at LSU. How suffocating defense has become Florida's identity, and why the Gators should lean into that moving forward. Plus, Eric on attacking the 1-3-1, Neil on Myreon Jones' leap, and the guys break down the difference maker that is Riley Kugel. Finally, a preview of Saturday's huge contest against No. 20 Missouri, as Florida seeks its first Quad 1 win.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) are joined by one of college basketball's most interesting humans- Rocco Miller, a bracketology expert, scheduling consultant, and hoops junkie to talk Florida and Texas A&M and the return of Mike White to Gainesville with the Georgia Bulldogs this weekend. Rocco was in Gainesville for Florida's heartbreaking loss to the Aggies and he'll share his observations from his courtside vantage point. Plus, why Georgia's guards will be tough for the Gators to corral- and why FAU is so good down in Boca Raton.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) team up to discuss Florida basketball. On this episode, the boys break down Florida's losses to Oklahoma at the Jumpman Invitational in Charlotte and at Auburn to close 2022. Why the Gators offense has gone cold, and what Florida can do to turn things around in 2023. Plus, positive signs defensively, and how this team has flipped the script on defense. The guys also discuss Florida's lack of late game options, and the "play" that failed to close the Auburn loss. Finally, at minute 55- a preview of the SEC home opener against Texas A&M.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) break down Florida's 75-54 loss at home to UConn. How the Huskies manhandled Florida, and what positives, if any, to take away from the loss. The guys have a lengthy chat about Florida's offense-- what they have liked through 10 games and what needs work. Plus, rotation questions, Myreon Jones' continued role, and the case for more Riley Kugel. Finally, the guys preview Florida and Ohio (Minute 46), who meet in Tampa on Wednesday. Can the Gators use the Bobcats matchup as a chance to "get well" and hit reset on the season as SEC play approaches?
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) discuss Florida's 2-0 week and the team's wins over Florida A&M and Stetson. What was so encouraging about these games, despite the level of competition, and why Florida's improved transition defense matters most. Plus, the guys continue the rotations debate, and wonder what the future holds when Kyle Lofton gets healthy. Alex Fudge's move to the starting lineup, and the importance of CJ Felder as a glue guy, is also discussed. Next, the guys preview Florida's game against No. 5 UConn. What makes this Huskies team so good? Why UConn's offense has looked different this season, how to deal with UConn's frontcourt, and the emergence of Jordan Hawkins as a star. This and much more are discussed at minute 33 as the Gators ready for a golden opportunity at home.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) is joined by Malik Grady (The Close-Up Magic Podcast) to break down Florida's lopsided loss to West Virginia in the 5th place game at the PK 80. Why did the Mountaineers dominate Florida? Why are the Gators so bad defensively? What's with Kowacie Reeves' absence? And what to make of the Gators 0-3 record in games against potential NCAA Tournament teams? This and much more in FBH's comprehensive breakdown of Florida's 1-2 trip to Portland, including commentary on Friday night's win over Oregon State. Plus, at minute 40, Neil Blackmon (Saturday Down South) previews Florida's home matchup this week with Florida A&M.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down Florida's opening round loss to Xavier at the PK 85 Phil Knight Legacy event. In a game when the Gators continuity ball screen offense generated plenty of buckets-- why couldn't Florida get stops? Breaking down the Gators struggles on the defensive side of the basketball, from transition defense to guarding Xavier's flex and stagger actions. Plus, revisiting rotations, and where was Kowacie Reeves? Finally, the guys preview Friday's consolation bracket game against Oregon State. On the Beavers funky 1-3-1 zone, their close call against No. 8 Duke, and who Florida must guard if it hopes to win.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) preview the PK 85: Phil Knight Legacy tournament, which begins on Thanksgiving Day in Portland. Florida opens with a terrific résumé opportunity against a very good Xavier team, with the winner likely to play Duke. Eric and Neil break down the Gators and Musketeers, an epic frontcourt matchup between Jack Nunge, Zach Freemantle, and Colin Castleton, and what makes Xavier's offense so good. Plus, why Florida's wings may give Xavier's backcourt trouble, and how Florida can attack a two-big lineup from Sean Miller's team. The guys also preview the remainder of an elite field at the PK 85, from a young, big, incredibly talented Duke team to Purdue and its Wooden candidate in Zach Edey to Press Virginia to a top 10 Gonzaga team, why this field is marvelous and every game will be a dogfight. Happy Thanksgiving to all our listeners, their loved ones, friends, and families!
The Gators erased a 19 point FSU lead and a game where the Noles had a 96.6% win probability Friday night to capture their first W in Tallahassee in a decade. FBH breaks the whole thing down. Bur first, Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) is joined by Jacob Rudner, 247 Sports, to talk Florida basketball and break down what Jacob has seen early in the season. Rudner shares insider stories about Wacie Reeves, the Florida coaching staff, and chats rotations, Myreon Jones, rebounding and more with FBH in an extended segment. Plus, why the PK 85 will be so important. At minute 31, FBH breaks down Florida's rally and win at FSU. How Trey Bonham changed the basketball game, why Alex Fudge's defensive prowess matters more than his nasty dunk, and much, much more....
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) discuss Florida's bookend weekend buy games against Kennesaw State (a win) and Florida Atlantic (a loss). What went right against the first set of Owls and wrong against the second set? What is worrying long-term about the FAU loss? Plus, breaking down the rotations: what to make of Niels Lane lack of playing time? What to make of Myreon Jones' extended minutes despite his inability to hit shots? Should Kowacie Reeves get more shots? And is Florida's transition defense a long-term concern? This and more, plus a preview of Florida's trip to Tallahassee to face the Seminoles, where the Gators will look to win for the first time in nearly a decade.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) talk Florida's opening night rout of the Stony Brook Seawolves Monday in Exactech Arena. All the reactions and analysis you need from the opening win of the Todd Golden era at Florida. Plus, what surprised the guys and why they loved the starting 5, and what Alex Fudge offers off the bench. Plus, a breakdown of Atlantic Sun foe Kennesaw State and Conference USA's Florida Atlantic, who come to Gainesville on Friday and Monday. Why both Owls are dangerous, and why FAU will be an especially huge challenge for the Gators.
Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Malik Grady (Close Up Magic Podcast) combine forces to take a deep dive into Florida's 2022-23 schedule. Among the topics discussed: the PK 85 Phil Knight Legacy event and a huge game with Xavier, another date with Oklahoma, why the FSU game will always matter, and where Florida's potential trap games and pitfalls are in both the conference and non-conference slate. Plus, the guys open the show talking recruiting and Florida's ambitious, impressive 2024 offer list.
Jake Winderman (CBS Sports) hosts this year's annual Florida Basketball Hour over/under and season predictions episode with Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) and Eric Fawcett (Gator Country). The trio also analyze Florida's recent scrimmage with Miami, who returns the bulk of an Elite 8 squad from a season ago. Who will be Florida's leading scorer? Is this a NCAA Tournament team? What's the ceiling for Colin Castleton? Which transfer has the biggest impact? These predictions and much more on what is always one of our most special shows of the year.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Malik Grady (The Close Up Magic Podcast) preview Florida's frontcourt for the 2022-2023 season. Led by All-SEC talent Colin Castleton, Eric and Malik discuss why this might be the best Florida front court since the Gators Elite 8 squad. Individual player outlooks, from Castleton to LSU transfer Alex Fudge and all in-between are discussed, along with some statistical numbers to consider as the season approaches. Plus, Eric and Malik break down how Todd Golden may use his bigs schematically in his first season at the helm in Gainesvile.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) begin their preview of year one of the Todd Golden era in Florida basketball with a look at the Gators backcourt. What will make the Kyle Lofton-Trey Bonham point guard duo so dangerous, and what Lofton will need to do to adjust to life in the SEC. Plus, Kowacie Reeves star potential, Niels Lane and the defensive upside of this backcourt, and why Will Richard may be the X factor. Finally, how much will talented freshman Riley Kugel contribute? All of this and more on part I of the Florida Basketball Hour season preview.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) interview Victor Lopez, Florida's new strength and conditioning coach. Coach Lopez shares his fascinating personal story, what he values as a basketball strength coach, and gives his thoughts on the opportunity at UF. Plus, all your offseason listener questions, including a discussion of which Gators will be most improved, Trey Bonham's role, and Alex Fudge's potential ceiling. Finally, the guys rank their favorite coaches in the sport right now, and discuss Feast Week and Multi-Tournament Event fields for the 2022-23 season. Why Maui is always fun, the PK tournaments will rule, and the Charleston Classic is the "analytics and basketball scheme" dream.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon break down Florida's final addition to the 2022-23 roster, German big man Aleks Szymczyk. Why Szymczk's skill is so intriguing, and why the scholarship makes sense. Plus, Riley Kugel arrives on campus, and Thomas Haugh becomes Florida's first commitment for the 2023 class. Why Kugel is underrated, and why Haugh will fit in well at Florida. Plus, a dive into some of Florida's other 2023 recruiting targets, and what makes each intriguing. The guys also breakdown the PK 85 bracket, Florida's non-conference schedule, and Todd Golden's promotion of the Florida brand, which stands in stark contrast to the secrecy surrounding the program under the prior regime. Why stories like the CBS Sports and Athletic profiles are good for the program, and why the "Florida Brand" is one that sells and compels in college basketball.
Blake Lovell of 14Southeastern joins Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) to recap the offseason that was in the SEC. Who won the transfer portal? Is there a better fit than Johni Broome at Auburn? Is this the best Kentucky team since the "Nearly Invincibles" that lost to Wisconsin in the Final 4? Was Dennis Gates quietly the best hire? What do we make of Alabama and Nate Oats in year 3? These questions and more are discussed. Plus, Blake on what he loves about Todd Golden, Florida's NCAA Tournament chops, and why Kyle Lofton will be a gamechanger in Gainesville.
Florida Gators Head Basketball Coach Todd Golden joins Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) for an interview. Coach Golden talks his influences, how he's embracing the history and expectations in Gainesville, life outside of the Air BnB, the big brain of his friend and colleague Jonathan Safir, being intentional in roster building, the importance of Kyle Lofton, and much more. A 30 minute segment with the new head coach. Plus, at minute 30: the guys break down Transfer Portal Team Rankings at various websites. Who won the portal wars? How did the Gators fare? Finally, a SEC-BIG XII challenge "Way too early" preview.
Eric Fawcett (Gator Country) and Neil W. Blackmon (Saturday Down South) break down the commitment of top 50 guard Riley Kugel. What made Kugel one of the fastest rising players in the 2022 class, and why he has an NBA ceiling. Plus, does the Kugel commitment change FBH's view on "package deals?" The guys also discuss the last remaining roster spot, lament the loss of PJ Hall, and give updates on the health of Colin Castleton and Jason Jitoboh. The Gators 2022-23 schedule is also taking shape, with visits from a rebuilding UCONN on deck and the BIG 12-SEC Challenge slate about to be released. Finally, at minute 45, a way-too-early look at the Florida depth chart for 2022-23.