Gator News And World Report (1/20/2006)

The Gator News and World Report for Friday, January 20, 2006. One-on-one with Billy D; UF deals with stadium chaos; Game may turn into shootout in Knoxville; Prospects making late visit to Gainesville; Gators defeat Rebels for first SEC road win; UF commitment from Sandalwood High surprises with 2.96 core GPA; Jones Broadcast Available Tonight; UF, Stetson top state graduation rates; Easy schedule makes UF hard to figure out; Catching up with Sha Brooks: 'I miss home' and more...

Florida Gator Basketball

One-on-one with Billy D
The sun has just begun to kiss the morning Gainesville sky. The chill in the air will soon be replaced by the warmth of another "winter" day in Florida, and Billy Donovan is wearing one of three uniforms.

Game may turn into shootout in Knoxville
Patterns haven't developed yet this Southeastern Conference season, but a few things are clear.

SWAT TEAM
Lee Humphrey knows how they feel. The embarrassment, knowing that people are laughing at you.

SEC Extra
Florida at Tennessee, 7 p.m. Saturday: This will be the Gators' toughest conference test so far. The Volunteers, who lost to Memphis on Wednesday night, use a stifling press that gives them a plus-8.54 turnover ratio. Tennessee also leads the league in 3-point shooting.

Easy schedule makes UF hard to figure out
The game had all the ingredients for a sellout, but fans weren't buying it. The nation's No. 2 basketball team, one of only three remaining unbeatens, was at home in January with a school-record winning streak on the line.

Donovan, Florida have fun on way to 17-0
Dick Vitale was passing out awards the other day when he called Florida's Billy Donovan the coach of the year at the midpoint of the college basketball season.

Dave Dye's Top 5: Top conferences
This conference is almost as large as the NBA now. The expansion to 16 teams included some solid basketball programs in Louisville, Cincinnati and Marquette. Add them to a group that includes two national-championship contenders, Connecticut and Villanova, plus three other ranked teams, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Syracuse. Pitt is one of three undefeated teams.

Sold-out arena for Gators
In the movie "Field of Dreams,'' it was said, "If you build it, they will come.'' But Tennessee fans aren't waiting for first-year coach Bruce Pearl to finish his reconstruction of the men's basketball program.

Florida Gator Football

Prospects making late visit to Gainesville
Officially, this is the last big visit weekend of the recruiting season for the Florida Gators. What it could pass for is a friendly get-together among future college teammates.

UF commitment from Sandalwood High surprises with 2.96 core GPA
Recruiting pundits who lauded Jamar Hornsby as one of the state's top football prospects also expected him to fall short of academic standards and take a two-year detour through junior college before ever playing a down for the University of Florida.

Jones Broadcast Available Tonight
Those who didn't get to see video of Middleton High linebacker A.J. Jones committing to the University of Florida have one more chance.

Tide focuses on defense as recruiting winds down
The University of Alabama football program lost defensive recruiting battles to Southeastern Conference rivals Ole Miss, Florida and Auburn this week, but head coach Mike Shula is still aggressively pursuing players on that side of the ball.

Coach: Tailback leaning toward Bulldogs, Gators
"New Jersey: Come See for Yourself" is the Garden State's new tourism slogan voted on in a contest of state residents. College football recruiters from Georgia, Florida and Virginia Tech took that advice this week to again visit running back Knowshon Moreno of Middletown South High School. Moreno, who visited Georgia in September, heads to Florida this weekend and Virginia Tech next weekend.

Ridiculously early pre-pre-preseason top three
The 2005 season was one of the best in recent memory with a fantastic finale — but it's over. It's time to look towards next season. We asked the experts at CollegeFootballNews.com for their ridiculously early pre-pre-pre-preseason top three.

Florida Gator Baseball

UF deals with stadium chaos
Matt LaPorta changes his clothes in an equipment room. Other Florida baseball players have changed clothes in a tunnel underneath the right field plaza at McKethan Stadium.

Florida Lady Gator Basketball

Gators defeat Rebels for first SEC road win
Senior Danielle Santos scored nine points during a 13-1 run late in the game to lead the Florida women's basketball team to a 66-58 win over Ole Miss at the C.M. Smith Coliseum on Thursday evening.

Lady Rebs fall to Florida
Brittany Davis scored 15 points to lead Florida to a 66-58 win over Mississippi on Thursday.

Catching up with Sha Brooks: 'I miss home'
It's all crammed in her head so tight that there's little room for anything else but her brain. For Sha Brooks, "leisure time" is a dirty phrase down in the Sunshine State

Gators rebound for victory
Focusing on rebounding going into Thursday's game at Mississippi, the UF guards nearly forgot how to score. Danielle Santos jogged her memory late in the second half.

Florida Gators

UF, Stetson top state graduation rates
The University of Florida had a GSR of 91 percent, Florida State 78 percent, Miami 77 percent and Florida Atlantic 60 percent. Stetson University also had a 91 percent rate, tying UF for the state's best.

Gators post academic TD
The NCAA's new Graduation Success Rate released Thursday helped restore the credibility of athletic directors who had complained for years that the previous measurement was flawed.

Ask, and ye shall receive
UF honored some of its biggest donors, including those who have given more than $5 million, at a ritzy hotel reception in this riverfront city Thursday night.

Florida Gator Gymnastics

Tide gymnasts will think pinktonight at home
The Alabama gymnastics team is ready for its 2006 unveiling. Not that tonight's meet at 7:30 at Coleman Coliseum against Florida is the Crimson Tide's first meet of the season. It's just that after two meets on the road, coach Sarah Patterson's team is ready for the home crowd.

Tide, Gators linked by pink
Both teams will be in neon pink for a common cause, but it'll still be all about the winning when Alabama and Florida gymnastics clash in an SEC dual meet opener tonight at 7:30 in Coleman Coliseum.

Bama seeks redemption against Gators
It's no longer No. 1 vs. No. 2, but that doesn't diminish the intensity of tonight's gymnastics meet between Alabama and Florida.

Ten Troupe leads rabid fan base
With the No. 4 Crimson Tide playing host to the No. 8 Florida Lady Gators Friday at Coleman Coliseum, the Ten Troupe cheering section has a lot to cheer about.

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