Gators Open SEC Action at Auburn on Sunday, 4 pm ET

Florida launches its 2017-18 Southeastern Conference schedule against Auburn on Sunday, bussing the 322 miles from Gainesville to play the Tigers in front of a televised audience.

The game will be broadcast live on ESPN2 beginning at 4 p.m. ET/3 p.m. CT, with Paul Sunderland and Steffi Sorensen calling the action.

The game will be just the second true away game for the Gators this season and fifth overall away from Gainesville. Florida played its first 12 games last season on the road due to the $64.5 million renovations to Exactech Arena. This season’s schedule is nearly the reverse, with just one true away game (at Oklahoma, Dec. 3) and three neutral site games (at the Savannah Invitational, Nov. 21-23).

Aiming to Buck Current Trends

·Florida has lost its last three SEC openers, as well as five of its last six league debuts

·The Gators have lost three of their last four against Auburn, with the last Gator win on The Plains coming Jan. 4, 2015

·UF enters Sunday’s SEC opener with eight total wins, but has yet to string together three consecutive victories. The Gators have won their last two games entering the match-up vs. Auburn.

Gators vs. Tigers: The Series

·This is the 57th meeting between Florida and Auburn. The 57 games will be tied for the third-most games against any opponent in Gator history (until UF plays Alabama on Jan. 4).

·Auburn leads the all-time series, 35-21, including a 16-6 advantage at home (series is tied 11-11 in Gainesville; Auburn is 8-4 at neutral sites).

·Last Meeting: Auburn won 82-75 in Gainesville (Jan. 1, 2017) – it was the SEC opener for both teams

Common Opponents

·The only common non-conference opponent Florida and Auburn shared is Chattanooga, and the Mocs got the best of both SEC teams, defeating the Gators, 65-60, and the Tigers, 50-41.

Twice the SEC Fun

·During the 2017-18 season’s 16-game SEC schedule, the Gators will play Georgia (their ‘permanent’ rival), Ole Miss and 2017 NCAA national-runner-up Mississippi State twice.

“Chuck it from the Cheap Seats!”

·The Gators are listening to Coach Cam Newbauer’s approach to shooting and has told every member of the team to “chuck it from the cheap seats!” (Coach is a HUGE movie guy and the quote is from “Hoosiers”)

·The Gators reset the program record for threes in a game twice already. The new standard stands at 17 after the Nov. 23 performance against Savannah State.

·The team canned 15 three-pointers vs. Richmond (11/21/17) to first break the program record for threes in a game, which was 13 at Arkansas, Feb. 1, 2009.

Gators for THREEEEEE!

·Entering Sunday’s game, the Gators are averaging 9.8 three-pointers per game and converting at a 34.9 percent clip.

·Thru games played Dec. 28, UF ranks Tied-No. 10 in the country in threes per game; and No. 13 in total three-pointers made (127).

·Florida has converted double-digit threes in SIX games this year, most recently 10 vs. Delaware State (Dec. 27).

·It took just six games for TEN of the 11 players on the scholarship roster to hit at least one trey this season.

What Else do the Gators do well?

·Aside from hitting the three at an SEC-leading rate, Florida does not get fouled. The Gators rank No. 2 in the country in staying out of foul trouble, being whistled for just 12.2 fouls per game.

·Through the first 13 games, not one Gator has fouled out this season.

What Just Happened

·Haley Lorenzen scored her 1,000th career point, notched her third consecutive double-double and Florida topped Delaware State, 85-51, on Wednesday.

·After jumping out to a 22-10 lead in the first quarter, the Gators used a 28-9 second quarter scoring advantage to put the game away by halftime as they entered the locker room with a commanding 50-19 margin.

·Lorenzen and Funda Nakkasoglu both logged 11 points during the first half when Florida (8-5) shot 52.8 percent (19-36) from the floor overall, including a 6-of-16 effort from long range. Delaware State (1-10) hit just 23.1 percent (9-39) during the first half with a 1-of-14 mark from deep.

·Florida’s 68 rebounds were the fourth-most in a game in program history and the most since collecting 70 against New Hampshire, Dec. 28, 1991.

·The Gators recorded 10 three-pointers, the sixth time for double-digit treys this season.

·Seven different Gators hit a three-pointer, paced by Searcy’s 3-for-4 effort.

Gator Watch

·Through 13 games, Florida is averaging a respectable 74.5 points per game, with all five starters averaging double-figure scoring.

·Top two Gator scorers: Funda Nakkasoglu (16.0 ppg) and Haley Lorenzen (12.7 ppg)

·Top two rebounders: Haley Lorenzen (9.6 pg) and Delicia Washington (8.8 pg)

·Assists leaders Delicia Washington (45 total, 3.5 pg) and Dyandria Anderson 44 total, 3.4 pg)

Who’s Hot!

·During the last three games, five Gators are each averaging a double-figure scoring effort, with Funda Nakkasoglu atop the chart with 15.0 points per game.

·Haley Lorenzen and Delicia Washington both are averaging a double-double during the three-game span, with Lorenzen averaging 14.7 points and 12.3 rebounds and Washington 10.7 and 10.7.

Quotes from the Court – UF Head Coach Cameron Newbauer

On feelings going into SEC play

“I feel probably the same way that every other coach in the conference feels going into SEC play, anxious because it’s such a gauntlet. Every team is just so stinking good. The best player, coaches and fans in the country. Taking road trips that is highly competitive basketball.

“We have players that are in completely different roles and we spent the first 13 non-conference games preparing for SEC play. Nothing can really prepare you for it and not really sure how you can prepare for Auburn being our first SEC game. They bring so much intensity and effort to the game. It’s just one of those things where you have to lace them up and stay together. Play hard for as long as you can.

“It’s a combination of excitement and anticipation of who we are and what we are made of.”

Game Day at a Glance

·Florida (8-5, 0-0 SEC) at Auburn (9-3, 0-0 SEC)

·Auburn Arena (9,121) * Auburn, Alabama

·Sun., December 31 * 4 pm ET/3 pm CT

Gator Game Coverage & More!

·Radio: ESPN Gainesville 98.1FM & 850AM WRUF with Kyle Crooks & Brittany Davis

·Internet Audio: link thru (FREE)


·Television: ESPN2 with Paul Sunderland & Steffi Sorensen

· Streaming Video: WatchESPN app


·Internet Scoring: LIVE through


Game Notes (PDF)

·Florida –

·Auburn –

Opening Tip

·Florida wrapped up its non-conference slate with an 8-5 overall record and now turns its attention solely on Southeastern Conference foes.

·The Gators and Tigers meet for the second consecutive year in the SEC opener for both teams.

·Florida is aiming to halt a three-game skid in SEC openers, with its last league-opening win coming in 2013-14.

·The Gators lead the SEC in three-pointers made per game (9.8), threes made (127) and three-point attempts (364). The Tigers lead the league in scoring defense (51.2), steals (15.3) and turnovers forced (25.33).

Gator Pronunciations for this Release:

·DYANDRIA Anderson: dee-ANN-dree-uh

·FUNDA NAKKASOGLU: FOON-da knock-a-SO-glue

·DELICIA Washington: duh-LEE-shuh


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