Feb. 17, 2009
ALABAMA (13-11, 3-7 SEC) at FLORIDA (19-6, 6-4 SEC)
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tipoff: 6 p.m. (CST)
TV: Sun Sports
Radio: Crimson Tide Sports Network
Game Notes in PDF Format
The University of Alabama men's basketball team returns to the road for a Southeastern Conference cross-divisional contest at Florida on Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. CST
The Crimson Tide travels to the Sunshine State with a 13-11 overall record and a 3-7 mark in SEC action and will attempt to snap its current three-game losing skid that continued on Saturday with a heart-breaking 75-73 loss to South Carolina on a tip-in as time expired.
Florida enters the game after losing, 88-86, at Georgia on Saturday to fall to 19-6 this season and 6-4 in SEC games. However, the Gators are a sterling 13-0 on their home floor this season while the Tide is winless on the road.
"Obviously Gainesville is a tough place to play due to Florida having an outstanding team for a number of years. In my opinion, they've been the premier program in this league the last 3-4 years. Calathes, Tyus and Parsons are all playing well and it will be a tough game for us."
Wednesday's game is the 129th in the history of the series with UA holding a 73-55 advantage in the series. Alabama is 18-36 all-time in Gainesville and just 4-15 in the O'Connell Center and last won at Florida on February 25, 1995 with a 69-66 victory.
Alabama won the last meeting between the two, 80-69, in the first round of the 2008 SEC Tournament, but has lost seven of the last 10 against the Gators. In four career games against Florida, senior Alonzo Gee has averaged 17.8 points on 56.0 percent shooting.
Gee enters the stretch run of his storied career leading the Tide in scoring and rebounding with 14.1 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. He is also approaching the 1,500-career point plateau as he enters Wednesday's game needing just 11 points to become the 14th UA player to reach the milestone. He moved into 14th all-time in scoring at UA on Saturday with a game-high 18 points against South Carolina.
JaMychal Green continues to solidify his standing as one of the top freshman of the SEC after scoring nine points with eight rebounds and three blocks in 20 minutes of action of the bench against South Carolina while battling a hip pointer injury. He is currently averaging 12.1 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game in SEC contests this season. Since the start of SEC play, Green has scored in double-figures seven times with three double-doubles.
Mikhail Torrance has continued to produce solid play at the point, averaging 10.2 points and 3.6 assists over the past five games. The 88.2 percent free-throw shooter has been even more accurate lately, making 12-straight free-throws and 33 of his last 35 (.943).
On Saturday at Georgia, Walter Hodge led the Gators with a 22 points while Nick Calathes finished a rebound shy of a triple-double with 16 points, 13 assists and nine rebounds. On the season, Calathes leads the Gators and is fifth in the SEC in scoring with 18.6 points per game. The sophomore is tops in the league in assists with 164 this season for a 6.6 per game average.
Alex Tyus and Chandler Parsons also average double-figure scoring with 12.4 and 10.1 points per game, respectively.
The Gators have won all 13 of their home games this year and boast a 15-game home winning streak dating back to last season. The squad also boasts the second-best field goal percentage in the league at 48.8 percent with two starters, Calathes (.507) and Tyus (.612) shooting better than 50 percent.
Following Wednesday night's contest, the Tide will return to Coleman Coliseum to play host to Mississippi State on Saturday, February 21. Tipoff between the SEC West rivals is scheduled for 2 p.m. CST.