Boynton gets his shot back

The Southeastern Conference tournament enjoyed on a sour note for Florida by losing in the championship game, but there were still positives that came from the weekend in Nashville. Senior guard Kenny Boynton started to regain his stroke from the outside after dealing with inconsistency throughout the year. That's the best news Florida could've had before starting the NCAA Tournament.

"I thought that was a good, bright spot for us," Billy Donovan said on Monday morning. "It's good, as long as he's taking good shots and doing that. One of the things that were apparent in our last six games was Kenny's shooting percentage."

It has been a struggle for the senior guard during his last year. Kenny Boynton has rewritten the record books in Gainesville during his four-year career while starting in all of them. He's currently first in school history with 329 three-pointers made, fifth with 655 field goals made, first with 4,564 minutes, first with 138 games started, fifth with 141 games played and 10th with 387 assists.

He came to Florida billed as a dominant scorer and has lived up to that. He's still second on the team with 12.3 points per game, but that number is by far his lowest average during his career. The second lowest was 14 points per game during his freshman year.

Bringing the program back to the NCAA Tournament after back-to-back NIT appearances before he got to Gainesville has showed his value to Florida. However, he also helps the team off the court. He's as calm as they come.

Despite the inconsistencies of his scoring this season, Boynton hasn't changed once off the floor. He doesn't speak much. He rarely shows emotion.

"When you're dealing with young people, there's usually a wide range of emotions sometimes you have to deal with," Donovan said. "He's about as consistent of a guy as I've coached since his freshman year. His mood never changes. He's reliable. You know what you're getting. I think his consistency of being a dependable guy is really, really important. I think his fearlessness, his aggressiveness, his will and wanting to win as a competitor, are things that would stand out to me."

SHOULD YOUNG SHOOT MORE?

Florida center Patric Young went 1-for-3 from the field in 28 minutes on Sunday in the SEC Tournament final. He also had just four rebounds, tied for third on the team. It wasn't enough for Donovan to be happy. Young's energy level has been fine in recent games, but he didn't match the productivity of the Ole Miss frontcourt.

While he's aggressive and runs the floor well, Young was passive with the ball. He didn't attack the basket when the guards got him the ball in the post.

"I thought he threw the ball out of the post too much," Donovan said. "He got touches, and he threw the ball out of the post. I would like to have seen him gone and be a little bit more aggressive offensively than what he was."

Ole Miss played zone defense for just less than half the game, but when they were in it, the Florida guards struggled to get the ball inside to Young. That's when Florida settled for more jump shots over the zone.

The Gators also need Young to get better when he's at the free throw line. He went just 1-for-4 at the line on Sunday and has struggled there all season.

"When he gets there, those are possessions and touches, too," Donovan said. "We can always do a better job of getting anybody the ball in a good area of the floor."


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