Chris Chiozza gets triple-double, No. 24 Florida thumps Missouri

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Late in the second half, backup Florida guard Chris Chiozza whispered to coach Mike White that he needed to get him back in the game.

His reasoning? Chiozza said he was going to get a triple-double.

“I said, `No, you’re not. Come on,”‘ White said.

Chiozza convinced White he was close enough to make it happen, so the coach let him play the rest of the way. And the junior ended up with the first triple-double of his career – finishing with 12 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists – as No. 24 Florida dominated woeful Missouri 93-54 on Thursday night.

Chiozza joined the exclusive club when he dished to Devin Robinson for a 3-pointer with 31 seconds remaining. Equally impressive: The Gators (17-5, 7-2 Southeastern Conference) tied a school record by winning their third consecutive game by at least 30 points.

Coming off lopsided victories at LSU and at Oklahoma, Florida wasted no time putting Mizzou in a huge hole. The Gators led 12-2, 18-3, 30-6 and 48-18 in the first half while building a 31-13 rebounding advantage. White’s team did little wrong for the third straight outing and looked more than ready for No. 8 Kentucky on Saturday night.

The only suspense was whether Chiozza would join Nick Calathes and Corey Brewer in Florida’s recent triple-double club. Calathes and Brewer are the only Florida players to accomplish the feat since 1997.

“It means a lot,” Chiozza said. “I’m glad that I achieved that, but I’m happier that we got the W. That’s the most important thing.”

Canyon Barry led Florida with 17 points. KeVaughn Allen added 15, and Kasey Hill chipped in 11.

Terrence Phillips had 14 points for Missouri (5-16, 0-9), which reached the halfway point to SEC futility.

Mizzou lost its 13th in a row – tying the longest streak in program history – and its 14th straight in league play. The Tigers also lost their 31st consecutive road game.

“They came out and completely outmatched us,” Missouri coach Kim Anderson said. “They got every rebound, made every shot. It was kind of like getting hit by a train.”

BIG PICTURE

Missouri: The Tigers have a young team that includes six sophomores and four freshmen – and remain on NCAA probation – but what they did at Florida has to be concerning for Anderson and his future. They were overmatched from the start and showed little, if any, fight after digging a huge hole.

“We didn’t even jump on the (opening) tip,” Anderson said. “I should have known then.”

Florida: The Gators are winless in three games against ranked teams (Gonzaga, Duke and South Carolina), so Saturday’s game against the Wildcats is an important one for a team looking to build its NCAA Tournament resume and potentially earn a top-four seed and open the bracket in nearby Orlando.

0-18 AHEAD?

Missouri has lost five of its last six by double digits, a potential sign that Anderson’s miserable season could be on the verge of unraveling. Could the Tigers go 0-18 in league play? The last team to do so was Georgia Tech in 1953-54, so it would be rare. But given the way the Tigers played Thursday, it certainly seems like a possibility.

GOOD COMPANY

White will get a better feel for his team against Kentucky. The Gators had a lengthy team meeting after losing to Vanderbilt in Gainesville on Jan. 21 and have been on a tear since.

The last time they won three in a row by 30 points was in 2006, but those came against Western Kentucky, Prairie View and Chattanooga – and with help from three future NBA lottery picks who won back-to-back national championships. Al Horford, Brewer and Joakim Noah also helped Florida accomplish the feat in 2004 against Sam Houston State, Eastern Kentucky and Georgia Southern.

UP NEXT

Missouri hosts Arkansas on Saturday. The Tigers’ conference losing streak started against the Razorbacks nearly a year ago.

Florida hosts Kentucky on Saturday, a game that will be featured on ESPN’s College GameDay.

More AP college basketball: http://www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25

VIDEO: Zion Williamson throws down a vicious putback

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Zion Williamson made another highlight-reel play on Saturday outside of Atlanta as he threw down a vicious putback dunk at the Best of the South.

The five-star prospect has returned from a minor knee injury this spring to look like his old self in July as he’s entertained packed gyms of fans and college coaches the last two weeks.

The Class of 2018 star is currently regarded as the No. 3 overall prospect in the latest Rivals.com national rankings.

(h/t: Courtside Films)

Five-star 2018 point guard Darius Garland cuts list to six schools

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Five-star Class of 2018 point guard Darius Garland revealed the final six schools that he’s considering on Friday.

The N0. 12 overall prospect in the Class of 2018, according to Rivals, the 6-foot-0 Garland is one of the top floor generals in the nation as he is still considering Duke, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, UCLA and Vanderbilt.

A native of Nashville, Garland is a potentially elite perimeter threat at the college level as he’s one of the more deadly three-point marksmen in the nation.

Garland spent this spring and summer playing with Bradley Beal Elite in the Nike EYBL as he averaged 16.8 points and 4.8 assists per game in the league this spring.

VIDEO: Kentucky’s John Calipari participates in the #DriveByDunkChallenge

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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The #DriveByDunkChallenge is sweeping the nation on social media this summer.

Rules to participate are pretty simple:

  1. Drive around in your vehicle.
  2. Find a basketball hoop (or a basketball ring if you’re Ted Cruz) on a random driveway.
  3. Run out of your car and dunk on that random hoop while a friend films.
  4. Run back to your car and drive away.

Let Anthony Davis show you how it works:

Pretty simple, right?

The #DriveByDunkChallenge isn’t raising money or awareness for ALS like the #IceBucketChallenge did three years ago, but it’s something harmless and fun to do to pass the time during the dog days of summer.

Sensing an opportunity to join an Internet craze, while also following in the footsteps of his former player Kentucky star, Wildcats head coach John Calipari got involved with his own dunk late Friday night.

And his video is much funnier than I thought it would be.

While most #DriveByDunkChallenge videos are done by healthy and spry teenagers who are cruising neighborhoods during the day, Calipari, and his hip replacement, got in on the fun with a late-night dunk.

I love that Calipari ditched the ball behind his back while running back to the car after the dunk.

Most people who participate in the challenge usually have their own ball and keep it with them through completion. But Calipari either picked up a random ball in the driveway or just he lost the handle with his own ball and had a turnover.

The next time Calipari goes hard on one of his point guards for losing control and playing too fast, remember this moment.

Creighton’s Khyri Thomas posterizes defender

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Creighton rising junior wing Khyri Thomas, like several of his teammates, are taking part in the Omaha Summer League this offseason.

On Thursday night, the 6-foot-3, 205-lb. Thomas eviscerated a defender with a one-handed posterization.

Thomas is coming off a breakout sophomore campaign for the Bluejays. He started all 35 games, averaging 12.3 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Aside from the increase in offensive production, Thomas served as one of the top defenders in the Big East. He shared the Big East Defensive Player of the Year Award with Villanova’s Josh Hart and Mikal Bridges.

Zion Williamson throws down 360 windmill dunk

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Zion Williamson added another jaw-dropping dunk in the layup lines on the first night of the second live evaluation period.

Williamson and his SC Supreme team took on Each 1 Teach 1 at the Hoopseen Best of the South at the LakePoint Sporting Community in greater Atlanta.

The 6-foot-7 power forward threw down a 360 windmill dunk during his pregame routines.

Each 1 Teach 1 would pick up a 70-67 victory over SC Supreme. Williamson would end with a monster stat line of 37 points and seven rebounds.