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Quick Takes: Trying to figure out Florida

Dave2015If you can figure out Florida, pass along your special sauce.  The Gators were down 22 points – at home! – Wednesday night to Georgia.  Then, in the blink of an eye – about seven minutes of clock time – those same Gators erased the deficit and ultimately survived the Bulldogs to avoid what could have been a troubling loss to a team hovering just above the bubble cutline.

In the end, it’s about wins and losses.  But it’s fair to say this year’s Florida team has been an enigma.  Looking ahead: Xavier’s current resurgence helps the Gators’ profile a bit, but there are three resume landmines around the corner: at Ole Miss, at Texas AM, and Vanderbilt (home).  Florida’s closing stretch includes two games with Kentucky, road trips to Tennessee and Georgia, and home dates with Arkansas and LSU.  How the Gators handle that stretch is anyone’s guess.  But it will determine where the Gators stand heading into the SEC tournament.

Additional Quick Takes:

  • Butler got point guard Aaron Thompson back from a wrist injury and then used a last-second Kamar Baldwin trey to knock off Villanova on a rainy (and temporarily wet) night at Hinkle Fieldhouse.  After a brief wobble, the Bulldogs have won three of four.
  • Purdue and Minnesota both picked up Big Ten wins at home. Winning at home hasn’t been the issue, though; it’s been finding W’s outside the confines of Mackey and The Barn. Both teams have just one B10 road win.  Coming up: Purdue has three of four away from West Lafayette; Minnesota has an even 2-2 split in its next four, with the roadies at Penn State at Northwestern.
  • Memphis handled its business at home against Temple; the Tigers need to do the same against South Florida this weekend.
  • LSU was going to lose an SEC game, but falling at Vanderbilt was a bit of a stunner – especially with a trip to Auburn ahead on Saturday.  In all, the Tigers play four of their next six on the road.
  • Saint Louis added a home loss to Duquesne to its resume (and thus have been swept by the Dukes in A10 play).  It might not be a crippling loss, but it still stings. SLU only has one win (Richmond) against a team anywhere near NCAA contention.  Next up: Dayton.  That feels like a must win.
  • Utah State took care of business at home against UNLV.  Having lost both Mountain West “up” games against San Diego State, the Aggies need to finish strong and avoid a clunker coming home.
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