Florida v Auburn

No. 6 Florida beats Alabama, but it wasn’t exactly pretty

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Michael Frazier II had 18 points and Casey Prather added 14 points and six boards as No. 6 Florida overcame a sluggish performance to knock off Alabama, 68-62.

It feels like we’ve said this before.

When the Gators played at Arkansas, they needed overtime to knock off the Razorbacks. When they played at Auburn, they only managed to beat the Tigers by seven.

Now, the SEC may not be all that good this season, but that doesn’t change the fact that winning on the road in league play is a tough thing to do. It doesn’t matter what league you’re in.

But it’s also fair to say that the Gators have been less than impressive on the offensive end of the floor in recent weeks. For a team that plays a lot of minutes with two point guards on the floor, the Gators have a tendency to go through stretches where they just aren’t that good offensively.

It makes sense when you think about it. Their leading scorer is Prather, who is a slasher who game is more or less limited to five feet and in. Frazier is pigeon-holed as a spot-up shooter. Patric Young and Dorian Finney-Smith are good, but they aren’t exactly known for being able to create their own shots.

Quite a bit of the pressure to create falls on Scottie Wilbekin and Kasey Hill as a result, and while both missed time earlier in the year, they should be healthy — and in Billy Donovan’s good graces — at this point.

So here’s my question: are these recent offensive funks a sign of playing on the road, or are they a precursor for bigger issues?

PHOTO: Ohio State’s new LeBron James shoe display

during the College Football Playoff National Championship Game at AT&T Stadium on January 12, 2015 in Arlington, Texas.
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Ohio State has capitalized on its close relationship with NBA superstar LeBron James over the years and now has a new shoe display that should come in handy during recruiting.

The Buckeyes put out a tweet late this week with the display, calling themselves “THE LeBron school.” While this is something small, recruits like that the Buckeyes are tied into the best player in the world and it’s cool to them that Ohio State gets some exclusive gear.

Rutgers hoping new duo can bring a spark

of the Ohio State Buckeyes against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during their Big Ten conference game at Rutgers Athletic Center on February 8, 2015 in Piscataway, New Jersey.
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Rutgers has struggled to achieve success on the floor the last few years and head coach Eddie Jordan is hoping that some talented newcomers can help start a turnaround. With the start of practice, local media saw some of the Scarlet Knights’ early practice and Jerry Carino of the Asbury Park Press noted that the duo of freshman point guard Corey Sanders and junior college forward Deshawn Freeman were getting a lot of burn together.

With both incoming players being four-star prospects, it’s hardly a surprise that Jordan would see what the two were capable of. According to Carino, it meant a lot of Sanders driving and forcing the defense to collapse before finding Freeman.

“It seems like coach always has us on the same team,” Freeman said to Carino. “Ever since we’ve gotten here, he’s trying to get us to play together.”

Carino also notes that since Rutgers is deeper, longer and more athletic in general this season, the team could do more with a pressing defense to help create turnovers.

While Rutgers still faces an uphill climb in the Big Ten, they at least have some exciting pieces that will be in place for a few seasons.