Notebook: Jumpstarting Hill

Florida coach Billy Donovan doesn't like doing it, but sometimes, it's necessary. Freshman Kasey Hill doesn't always play with the necessary demeanor. He can be quiet and get caught playing without the intensity Donovan wants, causing the Florida coach to get on his backup point guard until it changes. It took until the second half on Tuesday for that to happen.

Kasey Hill played 12 minutes in the first half against Missouri and had two points, two rebounds and two assists with one turnover. But he still wasn't playing with the energy Donovan wanted.

"I didn't think he was very good at all in the first half," Billy Donovan said. "I didn't like his disposition, his motor or his intensity. He's way too laid back, way too casual. It's like I have to get on him all the time and that gets him going."

The second half saw Hill score two points but add four assists. He jumpstarted the offense and oversaw the 43-point output in the second half. Since Hill suffered a high ankle sprain on November 18, he has been slowed by the injury. The freshman got his explosiveness back in the last few weeks, and it's easy to see his speed with the ball in his hands.

"He's got a really good feel and understanding to where he's playing and gets in the lane, he can see, find and make things easier for guys," Donovan said. "He can get guys shots. He has been doing that the last few games."

There's still plenty of room for improvement for the freshman, especially when he doesn't have the ball in his hands.

"We need him more engaged defensively," Donovan said. "We need him playing harder on that end of the floor."

MAKING FRAZIER SHOOT: Tuesday was a familiar situation for Michael Frazier. His three-point shot wasn't falling in the first half but came around in the second half. In Southeastern Conference play this year, Frazier is shooting just 22.9 (8-35) percent for three in the first half of games. But in the second half, he's shooting 48.8 percent (21-43).

His teammates and coaches have to stay on him when the shots aren't falling. He passed up shots in the second half against Missouri, forcing Donovan to continue encouraging him to shoot. His teammates made sure he got the message, too.

"Him giving up an open three is like a turnover," Florida center Patric Young said. "That's one of the best shots we can get as a team."

The Florida players saw Frazier's defense slack when his shot wasn't falling, allowing Missouri guard Jabari Brown to get open and keep the Tigers in the game. Once Frazier started shooting and making his threes, the game was essentially over.

"He's one of a kind," Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin said. "There's not too many shooters out there better than Frazier."

HISTORICAL NIGHT: Tuesday's win gave the Gators their 16th consecutive 20-win season. Duke and Syracuse are the only two programs with longer active streaks under one head coach.

The Florida players didn't downplay the importance of it on Tuesday. They were happy for their coach to record another 20-win season.

"Excellence -- that's what he exudes from his personality and we try to portray his personality on the floor," Wilbekin said about Donovan. "He does a great job at recruiting and development. He's just a great coach. It shows with his overall record."


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