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lorida center Kerry Blackshear (24) shoots a 3-pointer over Mississippi forward Sammy Hunter (23) during an NCAA college basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020, in Gainesville, Fla. (Brad McClenny/The Gainesville Sun via AP)

Preview: Gators Men’s Basketball face Aggies In College Station

The Gators men’s basketball team travels to take on the Texas A&M Aggies on Wednesday.

Florida is coming off of their worst loss of the season, losing to Ole Miss on Saturday by 17 points. The Gators enter Wednesday’s game sitting at 14-9 on the season (6-4 in the SEC).

The Aggies are coming off of a rough 20-point loss to the South Carolina Gamecocks in their last outing.  Texas A&M currently sits perfectly balanced at 11-11 on the season (5-5 in the SEC).

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Gator coach Mike White sees the inconsistencies his team has had all season long. According to him, things need to change emotionally.

“The amount of emotional moments have to decrease. Our level of consistency and stability, mental toughness, have to dramatically increase for this team to max out. And if it doesn’t, it’s not going to happen, it’s just not.”

Against Ole Miss, sophomore guard Andrew Nembhard suffered an apparent ankle injury. According to White, Nembhard tried to get reps at Tuesday’s practice and is uncertain of his ability to play against the Aggies.

Reunion

Familiar faces in College Station. Gators forward Kerry Blackshear Jr. will see his former coach Buzz Williams as Florida takes on the Aggies. Williams coached Blackshear Jr. at Virginia Tech before Blackshear Jr. transferred to Florida, and was there from 2014-2019.

According to Blackshear Jr, his relationship with Buzz Williams is strong.

“Four years. We built a pretty good relationship over that time. Just from being there at Virginia Tech for so long, I understand some of his tendencies, but he also understands mine.”

What to look for

Texas A&M currently leads the SEC defensively, allowing only 64.6 points a game but they struggle on the offensive end.  Florida ranks just seventh in both points for and points against per game in the SEC. The Gators, however, lead the SEC in three-point shooting percentage.

Sophomore forward Keyontae Johnson says that the team is ready to attack the Aggies offensively. According to him, the key lies in attacking Josh Nebo.

“Their center (Josh) Nebo is really good at blocking shots so our coaches are telling us to drive and attack him. Give him shot fakes and get him in foul trouble early. We have to give him a lot of pressure in the paint and that way KJ (Blackshear) can kick it out so we can shoot open shots.”

Nebo leads the Aggies in scoring and rebounding; the senior from Houston averages 11.4 points and 6.6 rebounds per game.

Coverage

The Gators men’s basketball game against the Aggies tips off at 8:30 p.m. on Feb. 12 on the SEC Network. Radio coverage of the game starts at 7:55 p.m. here on ESPN 98-1 FM 850 AM WRUF.

About Steven Walker

Steven Walker is a beat writer for ESPN Gainesville and is currently studying Journalism & Sports Media at the University of Florida.

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