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Courtesy: FloridaGators.com https://floridagators.com/news/2018/11/14/womens-basketball-announces-lauded-2019-recruiting-class.aspx

Four sign with Florida Women’s Basketball in the 2019 class

The Florida Gator Women’s Basketball team is still on the hunt to make a name for themselves. However, this starts with recruiting. Wednesday Florida signed four freshmen to their 2019 roster.

New Faces

This class has potential to be one of the best to wear the Orange and Blue. This class has four 4-star recruits according to Prospect Nation. It includes Brylee Bartram, Lavender Briggs, Faith Dut and Nina Rickards.

As of now, they’ll enter UF as freshmen in the fall of 2019 and look to bolster the roster for next season.

Meet the 2019 Class

Guard Brylee Bartram, out of Tampa, is more than ready to start her Gator career.

“I’m really excited to be a Florida Gator,” Bertram said. “I felt a real family atmosphere with the team and coaches during my recruitment. We are going to come in as a class that wants to make an impact right away. I’m ready to do my part in making the team the best it can be.”

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Lavender Briggs also mentioned that she was really excited to get to college and start working with the team. She said that she’s talked a lot with the coaches about getting the ball rolling with this program and she’s ready to be here and work as hard as she can.

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Forward Faith Dut said this about her commitment.

“I’m super thrilled to join the Gator Nation,” Dut said. “I found that during my visit to Florida I had the most joy. So I was really happy about that. One of the biggest things I experienced was just a connection with the coaching staff and everyone else. I felt myself believing in the program’s vision. I knew right away that I wanted to be at Florida.”

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Lastly, Nina Rickards also said that she is exciting, but overwhelmed about her commitment, but only because everywhere she goes, people are doing the Gator Chomp. Nonetheless, she thinks this is the perfect place for her to develop as a person and a player.

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New Direction

The 2016-2017 season ended in disappointment, a feeling far too familiar for Gator women’s hoops fans. The team finished with a record of 15-16. They also didn’t make an appearance in any postseason tournament. As a result, Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin decided to part ways with long time head coach and former program alum, Amanda Butler after the disappointing season. The women’s basketball program is the only Gator sport without a conference championship. Stricklin wanted to change that. For this reason, he hired current head coach Cameron Newbauer in 2017.

Scratching the Surface

In his first season as head coach the Gators finished overall at 11-19 and 3-13 in the SEC. Although it wasn’t Florida’s best season, it was a rebuilding one. Newbauer has nearly 20 years coaching experience. In his first head coaching job at Belmont University, he turned the program around in two seasons. Newbauer led them to the NCAA Tournament twice in his four years with Belmont. They also earned two conference titles.

Hoping for a Bright Future

Will Newbauer’s program transition at Belmont also happen at Florida? Although the future of this program may be unknown. The four signees of this class could be the start of something exciting in Gainesville.

About Caitlin Todd

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