Not Your Ordinary Day

Thursday began like any other for Chandler Parsons. The future Gator worked out, thought about playing for Billy Donovan and then dealt reality: Donovan's gone.

When the news came Thursday afternoon, a weird feeling fell over small forward Chandler Parsons. He's not going to have an opportunity to play for Billy Donovan after all.

"It's all so shocking," Parsons said. "I woke up this morning signing up for summer school classes. I leave June 26 to workout with Coach Donovan and I'll go to sleep not knowing who I'm going to play for. It's weird."

Donovan called Parsons Thursday night and told him his dream job came calling. The two-time national champion told Parsons he hoped VCU head coach Anthony Grant would ease the transition. Grant spent 10 seasons as an assistant to Donovan.

Merely hours after news Donovan would work his magic in Orlando, according to a source, the Gators requested permission from VCU to speak with Grant.

Meanwhile, Chandler Parsons, Nick Calathes, Alex Tyus, Adam Allen and Jai Lucas must wait. Each has signed his letter of intent with the Gators. However, Lucas' situation with Florida, we've heard, may have been contingent on Donovan being in Gainesville.

In an ironic twist, Lucas purposely waited to make his decision until late in the spring to avoid a scenario of this nature. Once the Kentucky and Grizzlies storms were weathered, Lucas probably began letting his guard down and feeling like he'd made a safe choice.

But, the NBA can work its magic on just about anyone.

"I'll have to wait and see who they hire," Parsons said. "It's frustrating. I know he had to do what he had to do; it's his dream his job."

It's highly likely Parsons, Calathes, Allen and Tyus wear the Gator jerseys next season. Lucas would be the one of the group most likely to sew his oats. Realistically, one could see the Gators being lenient with the LOI's given the circumstances.

"I love Florida," Parsons said. "I love everything about Florida. I love the athletic director, the fans and I love everything about it. To top it off I was going to play for Coach Donovan. When you commit to a school you go to play for the coach. Not knowing who I'm going to play for is a little scary. Jai was in shock. He had no clue and he said he didn't know what he'd do."

This story could have tentacles that reach further than Gatorland. Take Joey Rodriguez for example. He's a high school teammate of Parsons and Calathes who signed on to play for Grant at VCU. The Rams have the top recruiting class in the CAA. Could he be affected by the decision?

One the eve of June 1 major shakeups like this aren't supposed to happen. Then again, Donovan wasn't supposed to be able to construct a dynasty and win back-to-back titles in Gainesville either.

Six months ago few would have conceived a scenario in which Donovan would be the highest paid Gator. Not with Al Horford, Corey Brewer and Joakim Noah jockeying for lottery position right? Think again because "Billy The Kid" just rode into Orlando and broke the bank.

Scout Hoops Top Stories