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By LARRY VAUGHT

While Kentucky fans and recruits are already thinking 2014 national championship, Florida players probably think they could still beat UK in the Southeastern Conference.

Center Patric Young announced Monday he would stay at Florida for his senior season, something he had been saying he would do, and that gives the Gators a chance to be a very good team again after making the Elite Eight the last three years.

Young averaged 10.1 points and 6.3 rebounds last season. The Gators Kenny Boynton, Erik Murphy and Mike Rosario — the team’s top three scorers — to graduation but return forwards Will Yeguete and Casey Prather, and guards Scottie Wilbekin and Michael Frazier II. They also get two big men eligible in transfers Dorian Finney-Smith of Virginia Tech and Damontre Harris of South Carolina.

And the Gators have two McDonald’s All-Americans of their own — point guard Kasey Hill (UK commit Dakari Johnson’s high school teammate) and Chris Walker (the McDonald’s All-American Game slam dunk winner who at one time wanted to come to UK).  Both Hill and Walker are very good players and should give the Gators a solid nine-man rotation.

The Gators will have the SEC’s best defensive guard in Wilbekin, a proven big man in Young, two McDonald’s All-Americans, two experienced transfers and three more regulars off an Elite Eight team.

Is that enought to make Florida a national title contender — or even a threat to UK in the SEC?

6 Responses to Does Young’s return give Florida enough to challenge UK next year

  • UKFAN197TONE says:

    Yes. However, we all know to well how a team looks on paper and then how it looks on the court.

  • Big Blue Kat says:

    UK, with a cast of weenies, beat UF on Senior Day. Patric Young is a football player who needs a helmet and an offensive game. Murphy and Boynton were way more important than Young to UF this year. Young will foul out every time he plays UK next year. UK will be the deepest team in the country, and the most talented. I’ll take anyone who wants to wager on UF right now, even the Gainesville game. Bring it on.

    • harvin08 says:

      I’ll gladly take that bet. No deeper team? LOLLOLOLOLOL. Florida will be 7 deep with players who have proven themselves in a college game – unlike the incoming Kentucky players who could end up like last years “superstars”. (I still remember all the UK fans telling me how Poythress and Cauley Stein were going to dominate LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL)
      Florida has 2 incoming McDonalds all Americans as well and should have a true point guard for the first time since Taureen Green. Florida will have a 9 deep, 4 senior rotation including the best sixth and seventh men of this year in the SEC in Yuegette and Prather and the best shot blocking ability they’ve had in Demontre-Harris since Joakim Noah. Florida’s rotation will include 7 players who have proven themselves at the college level.

      Also the point guard recruits from last year are an unknown variable. They all showed 3 point talent as seniors in high school and as Lee Humphrey showed, thats all you need as a guard to get time in Billy’s system.

      LOL you have no idea what Florida is bringing back and getting. Young could foul out every game and with Harris, Finney-Smith, Walker, Yugette and Prather, Florida would never miss a beat.
      Get real.

      • UKFAN197TONE says:

        “Lol” much? How young are you? 14? And who the hell is Taureen Green? Of course “we” know who Florida has…you just told us.

  • Larry Pup says:

    There will be several teams next year, including Florida, that will challenge UK. But I say UK will prevail if they work hard, play tough, hard nosed defense, and get along as a team. If they play smart, and unselfish they will do well. We have a lot of young talent, but they will have to win it on the floor. Nobody’s gonna give it to them just because they are all stars. We will get everyone’s best shot because we are KENTUCKY. I think some of our young men inbound need to zip it right now. Confidence is one thing, cockiness is quite another, especially if you have not beat anyone yet. GO CATS!!!

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