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Author Topic: Mike White, former Ole Miss player and LaTech coach replaces Billy the Kid at Florida  (Read 5874 times)

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jbcarol

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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 4m4 minutes ago Nashville, TN

Final: Texas A&M 72, Florida 66.

Gators 19-14 likley NIT bound following loss, drop to 1-7 v. ranked teams this season.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops  4h4 hours ago
Updated: Getting what it deserves, Florida loss to Texas A&M cements likely NIT trip http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160311/ARTICLES/160319935

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A chance for a needed statement was within grasp for Florida on Friday in its SEC Tournament quarterfinal matchup against No. 17 Texas A&M.

But a costly turnover, an inability to come up with a loose ball and some questionable shots down the stretch doomed the eighth-seeded Gators in a 72-66 loss to the Aggies at Bridgestone Arena.

The loss dropped Florida to 19-14 and 1-7 against ranked teams, and cemented a likely trip to the NIT. Florida was in position to earn an NCAA Tournament bid in early February, but stumbled down the stretch, going 3-6 in its last nine games.

“You get what you deserve,” Florida senior forward Dorian Finney-Smith said.

If Florida plays in the NIT, it would play all its games away from Gainesville due to the O’Connell Center’s $64.5 million interior renovation project that is ongoing.

“I’m not going to go there with what happens next,” Florida coach Mike White said. “I don’t know. I think that our administration has done a great job with putting together what the (NCAA Tournament) committee wants to see, and that’s a high-level schedule. In addition, we’ve played a grueling schedule in a grueling league.

“Wherever we’re sent, we’ll be excited to play, or we’ll find the right guys that are excited to play. We’ll continue to represent Florida and play hard and look to improve.”
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jbcarol

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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops  6m6 minutes ago Georgia, USA
A little perspective, Gator fans, White inherited a 16-17 team that DIDN'T MAKE THE POSTSEASON. So this year is at least progress.
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 Kyle Tucker ‏@KyleTucker_CJ 8h8 hours ago

Mike White gets tongue-tied, says on SEC call that his team will "try to have some sex -- some success, excuse me" in the NIT.

Steve Walentik ‏@Steve_Walentik 8h8 hours ago

Florida Coach Mike White: "I think we're underappreciated nationally. I think the SEC's better than people think."

 Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 8h8 hours ago Gainesville, FL

White on NIT -- "It's an honor to play in the NIT. It's not the ultimate goal but I hope our guys would come in w/right mindset."
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Kevin Brockway
‏@gatorhoops

Video: Florida coach Mike White confirms C John Egbunu will be shut down, undergoing surgery - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160316/ARTICLES/160319766/1217?Title=Video-High-praise-for-John-Egbunu



Pushed him to play against Arkansas in the SEC-T when an NCAA bid was still a possibility - however slim.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 16h16 hours ago

It's UF vs. George Washington in NIT quarterfinal - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160321/articles/160329945

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Florida will get one last test on the road in the NIT quarterfinals.

The second-seed Gators will face fourth-seed George Washington on Wednesday at the Smith Center in Washington, D.C. (7 p.m., ESPN2).

George Washington (25-10) advanced with an 87-71 win over top-seed Monmouth on Monday night. Florida will play its third straight game on the road due to the O’Connell Center’s $64.5 million interior renovation.

Florida (21-14) has gone 6-8 on the road this season. The Gators have won three straight road games -- at Missouri, at UNF and at Ohio State.

The game will serve as another homecoming for a pair of Virginia natives on UF’s roster -- senior forward Dorian Finney-Smith (Portsmouth, Va.) and sophomore forward Devin Robinson (Chesterfield, Va.). Florida began its season facing Navy at the Veterans Classic in Annapolis, Md.

A win would advance Florida to the NIT semifinals March 29 at Madison Square Garden...
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops  2h2 hours ago Georgia, USA
Final: George Washington 82, Florida 77.

Florida finished first season under White 12-4 at home, 6-9 on road and 3-2 on neutral courts.

Gators bow out of NIT with loss to George Washington - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160323/ARTICLES/160329842?tc=cr
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 10h10 hours ago Georgia, USA

As a team, Florida finished season shooting 31.9 pct from 3-pt range and 64.7 pct from the FT line.

Florida's best 3-pt shooter on the season? Justin Leon at 37.3 pct, followed by Dorian Finney-Smith at 36.8 pct.
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UF’s season ended in the NIT quarterfinals with an 82-77 loss at George Washington on Wednesday night. Florida finished 21-15, a five-game improvement over Billy Donovan’s final season, but was unable to win critical games in February and March to ensure a berth into the Big Dance.

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Florida showed flashes of improvement in Mike White’s first season as coach. But inconsistent shooting and defensive lapses late in the season prevented the Gators from reaching the NCAA Tournament for a second straight year.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 9h9 hours ago

Florida adds 2016 C Gak - http://brockway.blogs.gatorsports.com/13454/florida-adds-2016-c-gak/

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Florida picked up a big spring commitment for its 2016 class late Sunday.

Gorjok Gak, a 6-foot-11, 205-pound center from Victory Rock Prep in Bradenton, announced on his Twitter account he committed to the Gators after visiting campus last week.

“It’s been a long and rugged process but I couldn’t have done it without my family and my basketball familiy,” Gak wrote in his tweet. “It’s a good day to be a Gator.”

247 rates Gak as a three-star prospect and the 13th-best player in the state of Florida in the 2016 class. Gak had signed with Oklahoma State but was granted a release from his National Letter of Intent last month when Travis Ford was fired.

A native of Australia, Gak played this past season under Victory Rock Prep coach Loren Robinson, who praised Gak’s ability to run the floor, rebound and block shots. Gak averaged 10.9 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks for Victory Prep this past season.

Gak joins a pair of 2016 early signees –  guard Eric Hester (6-4, Oldsmar Christian) and forward Dontay Bassett (6-8, Oldsmar Christian) — as the third player in UF coach Mike White’s first full recruiting class.
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Corey Evans ‏@coreyevans_10 12h12 hours ago

Corey Evans Retweeted Gorjok Gak

Good week for Florida? Ballard now Gorjok Gak. Can they lure in his brother, top 50 2017 forward Deng Gak?
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Michael White ‏@MikeWhiteUF 3h3 hours ago

I'm excited to officially welcome @Gorjok12 to the #Gators! 🐊

Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 3h3 hours ago Brookhaven, GA

Gak (6-11 C) joins Eric Hester (6-4, g) and Dontay Bassett (6-8, f) as third member of UF's class.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops  1h1 hour ago Brookhaven, GA
White said nothing has changed on F Alex Murphy's status, said he's still waiting to hear if he gets sixth year #Gators

Florida confirms that Devin Robinson is returning for his junior season.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 10h10 hours ago

With year anniversary approaching, UF bk coach Mike White reflects on first 12 months on job - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160426/ARTICLES/160429749

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On May 7, 2015, White was hired from Louisiana Tech to replace future Hall of Fame coach Billy Donovan, who just led the Oklahoma City Thunder to a first-round win over Dallas in the NBA Western Conference playoffs.

Reflecting on his 12 months on the job, White said he feels more comfortable from both a coaching and recruiting standpoint. His first season resulted in a 21-15 record before falling at George Washington in the NIT quarterfinals in late March.

“I can’t sit here and just rave about all the success we’ve had, of course,” White said before speaking Tuesday at a Titletown Gator Club event in Gainesville. “I do feel like we got some things accomplished. We got better throughout the year. I thought we finished strong. I feel a lot better about our recruiting than I did 12 months ago. I understand our recruiting base more. I think we’re received more positively today than we were 12 months ago, when there were a lot more questions about how we were going to play and whether or not we were going to have any success.

“And probably the other two factors, I feel a lot more at home in Gainesville, my staff does, but most importantly, we understand our roster a lot better and they understand us a lot better.”

But White said the goal next season is to return to the NCAA Tournament after a two-year absence.

“I’m not thrilled where we’re at right now, but I feel like we’re headed in the right direction for sure,” White said. “I’ve always felt like my family and I have been well-received by the great people of Gainesville. We have awesome neighbors so I guess there’s a couple of ways to look at it. Personally, we’ve felt great since we’ve been here about a month, on the personal side of things. In terms of the basketball program and how you look at it, it’s still evolving. We’ve got to turn the corner and get back in the NCAA Tournament.”

White said the biggest challenge of his first season was getting a roster of players primary recruited by Donovan to buy in to his coaching style.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops May 11

Florida to add another transfer -- Va. Tech G Jalen Hudson - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160511/ARTICLES/160519924

Hudson continuing Mike White's trend of targeting bigger guards, Eric Hester (6-4), Shai Alexander (6-3), DeAundre Ballard (6-6).
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Jeff Borzello ‏@jeffborzello 12h12 hours ago

Florida extended offers to a pair of four-star 2017 forwards today: Kimani Lawrence and RaiQuan Gray.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 1h1 hour ago Gainesville, FL

Florida coach Mike White said that pg Kasey Hill has had a good an offseason as anyone on team.

White said chance for Canyon Barry (shoulder) and John Egbunu (thumb) to do limited work in July. Devin Robisnon (foot) probably longer.

White said playing high number of neutral court games due to O'Dome renovation presents big RPI opportunity

White on three areas of improvement -- FT shooting, 3-pt shooting and FT shooting, called FT shooting "pitiful" last year.

White said he's counting on Hill, a rising senior pg, being a leader next season, "that will be challenge every day."

Miss State coach Ben Howland mentions UF's Mike White among great new hires in SEC basketball.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 20m20 minutes ago Gainesville, FL

Just told that incoming Florida C Gorjok Gak is not enrolled in Summer B due to eligiblity issues, hope is to have him in by fall.
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 15h15 hours ago

$1 million buyout part of Mike White's contract at Florida - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20160726/ARTICLES/160729981?tc=cr

Intersting, there's a $1 million buyout on Mike White's contract from March 15-April 15. Billy D's largest buyout was $500K.

White's longevity bonuses are $375K after April 15, 2017, $400K after April 15, '18, $425K after April 15 '19.

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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 3h3 hours ago

SEC basketball notes on Gators being picked second in SEC East, White, Stricklin, Drew  - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20161019/ARTICLES/161019957?tc=cr

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Mike White is not one to buy into preseason projections easily. True the Gators return four starters from last year’s squad and have added potential impact graduate transfer forward Canyon Barry. But to White, there’s a difference between perception and reality.

“If we’ve been picked second, you all have obviously put a lot of stock in experience on paper,” White said. “I’m not upset about being picked second. I’m not sure I would have picked us second. We’re coming off an average year and lost our best player.

“That said, I think it speaks to the parity of this league. Do I think we could finish second? Yeah, I do. I think we could probably finish right in the middle of the pack as well, just depending on a bunch of different factors.”

Arkansas junior center Moses Kingsley was named preseason SEC player of the year.

KeVaughn Allen received All-SEC second-team honors. Allen is UF’s leading returning scorer at 11.6 points per game last season and scored 32 points as a freshman last year against Florida State, the most for a UF freshman since Matt Walsh scored 33 points against Miami in 2002.

White said Allen has picked up where he left off shooting the ball late last season.
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Florida basketball coach Mike White says nine players still competing for starting spots

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Sophomore guard KeVaughn Allen and 6-foot-11 redshirt-junior center John Egbunu are likely the two set pieces.

White said Allen has been the team’s best 3-point shooter through the preseason while Egbunu is Florida’s most imposing inside presence.

With Hill out, junior Chris Chiozza is the clear choice at point guard. Hill (17 starts) and Chiozza (22) were both in and out of the starting lineup last season.

Junior forwards Devin Robinson and Justin Leon, graduate transfer guard Canyon Barry, redshirt-freshman forward Keith Stone and 6-foot-9 sophomore center Kevarrius Hayes are the other guys competing for their role in the rotation and looking to make a positive impression Wednesday night.

White said he’s open to playing Hayes and Egbunu together for a big lineup at times. In general, he feels the Gators can throw out some versatile looks.

Perhaps White and his staff will come away with a few more conclusions after Wednesday night, though it doesn’t sound like he is in any rush to make any final decisions.

“These exhibition games are more about tuning your own team up and continuing to improve, at the same evaluating where you’re at as a team, as a program, evaluating guys individually,” White said. “That’s where I’m most anxious is just seeing where we’re at, how far we have to go, what we’ve gotten better at this fall, things like that.”

Florida went 21-15 in White’s first season with the program. The No. 2 slotting in the SEC preseason poll was a testament to the depth of experience the Gators have returning.

Aside from departed leading scorer Dorian Finney-Smith, Florida brings back the rest of its key cogs, including seven different players who made at least six starts last season as White routinely shook up the lineup.
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https://twitter.com/Michael_Carvell/status/794536928326680577

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“I’m really pleased with us right now, but it’s a daily eval, of course, with these guys. A lot of things that are positive right now, it’s about maintaining those things,” he said after practice. “And it’s a little bit easier right now as we’ve talked about a lot with our team to have great camaraderie and great chemistry because we haven’t played on TV yet. Starting lineups haven’t been announced yet and rotations, parents watching games and ex-coaches watching games and all of it. Our fans, the feedback, these guys’ classmates on campus.

“If we can remain together, if our locker room can remain as healthy as it is right now — and again, we’re in a really good place, but a lot of teams are — then we have a chance to be a good team and have a good year.”

That’s the expectation after the Gators were picked to finish second in the SEC
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 Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops Nov 11

UF hoops freshman Gak ruled eligible - via @Gator_sports http://www.gatorsports.com/article/20161110/ARTICLES/161119994/1136/frontpage
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 12h12 hours ago Florida, USA

Final: Florida 73, St. Bonaventure 66. #Gators avoid Bonnies upset bid to improve to 3-0.

Attendance for Florida-St. Bonaventure in Lakeland was 4,133
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 2h2 hours ago

Mike White on being ranked No. 24 says program trending upward but doesn't mean anything in early December.
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White spent longer than usual meeting with his team after the No. 21 Gators’ 83-78 loss at Florida State on Sunday.

His frustration with the result and performance was still evident when he made it to his postgame news conference.


Quote
On the decision to put guard KeVaughn Allen back on the court with 2 fouls in the first half: “Just how good they are defensively, how extended their defense was and is regularly, I didn’t want to go into the half really struggling offensively, looking at the stat sheet and having 26 points. KeVaughn, he’s not a big foul trouble guy and I didn’t foresee him picking up that third. It’s unfortunate for us obviously. We’re much better with him in the game.”
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 4h4 hours ago

Beyond the arc: 3 takeaways following UF’s 81-72 win over Arkansas - http://brockway.blogs.gatorsports.com/13577/beyond-arc-3-takeaways-following-ufs-81-72-win-arkansas/

White said he felt Gators got "punched in the mouth" first 3 minutes
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Kevin Brockway ‏@gatorhoops 2h2 hours ago

White on being 3-0 in the SEC, "We've beaten three good teams, three teams that can play with anyone in the country."
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Florida basketball coach Mike White gave his players a day off Sunday to clear their heads after a two-game losing skid, and when the Gators reassembled Monday they decided it was time for a team meeting.

A long team meeting.


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“I liked our approach yesterday when we came in,” White said Tuesday. “… I meet with each of our guys every day individually and I liked some of the responses I got to some of my questions. I liked some of the points that some of our guys brought up. A few of our guys suggested meeting yesterday. That’s what we did. We watched film on the Vandy game and then we met for a long time. I think it was productive, to this point. We’ll see how much carryover we have.”

No. 25 Gators (14-5, 5-2 SEC) look to break out of that two-game slump Wednesday night at LSU (9-9, 1-6).

To drive home that point, he shared a stat with his players, which he tried to recall from memory Tuesday.

“We talked for so long yesterday as a staff, so long as a team and then we jumped into LSU, of course. We’re kind of in a fog here, but I’ll do my best,” he said. “Defensively, against the 12 highest-rated opponents that we’ve played, the first four minutes of second halves we’re giving up 76 percent from the field — 76 percent. And a defensive rebounding percentage of 60 percent. And offensively, we have 5 assists to 12 turnovers. So, it’s all of the above to start second halves.”

This is not a new problem, he feels, but one that continues to vex him.
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Robbie Andreu ‏@RobbieAndreu 22h22 hours ago

White said UF's defensive numbers have been in steady decline since the Arkansas game.
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https://twitter.com/Michael_Carvell/status/828735452698071040

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The meeting lasted about 2 hours, and when it was over, Florida basketball coach Mike White felt pretty confident that key points had resonated with his players, that it had a positive effect.

But this? No, he didn’t exactly see this coming. Who could?

It was two weeks ago, as the Gators were coming off back-to-back losses and looking out of sorts...

A couple days later they went on the road and dominated LSU 106-71. Then they did the same at Oklahoma, 84-52. And again back home against Missouri, 93-54.

Then on Saturday night, the Gators treated then-No. 8 Kentucky like a November nonconference foe, controlling the game from start to finish for an 88-66 win.

“I don’t want to take any credit for it,” White said Monday. “As a coach, as a staff, you want your guys to communicate and take ownership. Sometimes they need a little prodding and guys need a little encouragement. So we ended a long film session, and it was kind of a spur of the moment deal, I said, ‘Guys, let’s all pull up a chair and let’s just talk. I’m going to give you some of my thoughts, and I want you to give him some of your thoughts and you to give him some of your thoughts and everyone in here is going to talk and we’re not going to leave this room until we get some stuff figured out.’

“And our guys were awesome about it. They embraced it. Kasey (Hill) talked a lot. John Egbunu talked a lot. Some of our older guys — Devin (Robinson) talked a lot, Canyon (Barry) — and they just recommitted to each other, to play for each other. Recommitted to defending and rebounding at the highest level possible. It’s funny, we’ve been really good in those areas the last four, and it’s led to good offense as well.”
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https://twitter.com/Michael_Carvell/status/836705616374693888

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Florida basketball coach Mike White said he communicated with the SEC regarding the technical foul assessed to sophomore guard KeVaughn Allen on Saturday at Kentucky.

Allen and Wildcats guard Isaiah Briscoe were called for double technical fouls after Allen gave a shove in response to Briscoe’s initial contact with 3:36 left to go in Kentucky’s 76-66 win in Lexington, Ky.

Acknowledging communication with the conference was about all White was willing to say on the matter.

“I’ve just got to be careful. I don’t want to dodge your question at all. I’ve had communication,” White said. “I don’t want to be fined in any way. I’m still buying diapers and if my (sons) don’t get in the driveway and get more shots up I’m going to be paying college tuitions as well. You know, KeVaughn unfortunately was called for a technical foul. You all saw it. I don’t want to go any further than that.”

White shared a story about being counseled on that by referee Mark Whitehead, who was officiating games at the time and is now the SEC’s coordinator of men’s basketball officials.

“He actually gave me some advice, put me under his arm at one point when he was doing one of our games,” White said. Whitehead “just talked about how I’m actually taking away from the focus on my guys and how to get them better and what we should be looking at offensively and defensively. And he made some great points. That’s why he’s great at what he does. But for the most part, that’s what I try to do. If you’re watching everything the officials are doing, you’re not watching the five guys you’re responsible for.”

White will lead the Gators in their final home game of the season on Wednesday. Arkansas is 22-7, 11-5 in the SEC.
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 Kevin Brockway‏ @gatorhoops 45m45 minutes ago

Florida coach Mike White has been named a semifinalist for Naismith National Coach of the Year.
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 Kevin Brockway‏ @gatorhoops 8h8 hours ago

Mike White dropped to 6-6 in Conf. Tournament games in career. Billy D struggled w/conf, tourney games early in career, b4 figuring it out
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 NotSlippinJimmy‏ @TylerAntar 2h2 hours ago

Congrats @MikeWhiteUF on winning his first ever NCAA Tournament game! #Gators
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 Kevin Brockway‏ @gatorhoops 1m1 minute ago

Florida 65, Virginia 39 F. #Gators moving on to Sweet 16 for 11th time in school history, fifth time in last seven seasons.
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 Kevin Brockway‏ @gatorhoops 7h7 hours ago

Chiozza said he doesn't ever recall hitting a game winning shot, in middle school or high school #marchmadness
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 Kevin Brockway‏ @gatorhoops 5h5 hours ago

FYI, with the 84-83 overtime win over Wisconsin last night, Florida coach Mike White improved to 9-11 in UF tenure in gamed dec by 5 or less
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