Vols prep for SEC showdown against #3 Florida Gators

GAMEDAY CENTRAL – Tennessee vs. Florida: http://1tn.co/NpaoQ9

The Tennessee basketball game notes for Tuesday’s contest vs. Florida can be viewed and downloaded at: http://1tn.co/M1ZMG3

TENNESSEE (15-8, 6-4 SEC) vs. #3/#4 FLORIDA (21-2, 10-0 SEC)

Feb. 11, 2014 | 7:05 p.m. ET | Thompson-Boling Arena | Knoxville, Tenn.

BUY TICKETS: http://1tn.co/17pDbaa

TV: ESPN (Brad Nessler, Jimmy Dykes and Shannon Spake)

STREAMING VIDEO: ESPN3 and WatchESPN.com

RADIO: Vol Network (Bob Kesling and Bert Bertelkamp)

SATELLITE RADIO: Sirius Channel 91 (UT feed); XM Channel 91 (UT feed)

ONLINE: UTsports.com (live blog and Vol Network audio stream)

TWITTER & INSTAGRAM: @Vol_Hoops

FACEBOOK: Facebook.com/BallWithTheVols

ITEMS OF NOTE

· Tennessee owns a 15-4 record during the month of February under head coach Cuonzo Martin.

· According to ESPN’s InsideRPI, Tennessee owns an RPI of No. 47 and has the 18th toughest strength-of-schedule (as of Feb. 9).

· In its last three games, Tennessee has a scoring defense of just 58.7 ppg.

· Both of Florida’s losses this season have come on the road (No. 20 Wisconsin, No. 12 UConn).

· On 11 separate occasions, an unranked Tennessee team has beaten a Florida squad ranked in the Associated Press top 25.

· And on eight occasions, the Vols have beaten a Florida team that was ranked in the Associated Press top 10.

· The last time the Volunteers faced the Gators in Knoxville (2/26/13), Tennessee upset No. 8 Florida, 64-58.

· In four career games vs. Florida, Jordan McRae averages 13.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks.

· Florida senior Patric Young is the SEC’s active career leader for rebounds, with 756. Vols junior Jarnell Stokes ranks second with 680 boards.

· All-SEC candidate Jarnell Stokes is the only player in the conference averaging a double-double in league play (14.1 ppg, 11.7 rpg).

· Jarnell Stokes has 13 double-doubles this season and 31 in his career (both lead the SEC).

· Junior Jarnell Stokes ranks fifth nationally in offensive rebounding, with 4.22 orpg.

· In the four games since he took over as UT’s starting point guard, true freshman Darius Thompson owns an impressive 4.5 assist/turnover ratio and a plus/minus rating of +17.49 (per 40 minutes).

· In UT’s last four games, junior wing Josh Richardson is 9-of-18 from 3-point range (.500).

· If the season ended today, Tennessee’s average of 14.65 offensive rebounds per game would be the best single-season average in program history (stat has been recorded since 1996-97).

· In SEC play, Tennessee is a perfect 5-0 in games in which it totals more than 11 assists.

LAST TIME vs. FLORIDA...

· Sixth-ranked Florida extended its home win streak to 26 games with a 67-41 victory over Tennessee on Jan. 25 in Gainesville.

· Jarnell Stokes was a force for the Vols, posting his 10th double-double of the season with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Jeronne Maymon added eight points and seven rebounds for Tennessee, which suffered its first loss to Florida since 2011.

· UT’s starting backcourt combined to shoot 2-of-29 from the field (.069). Top scorer Jordan McRae was held to five points on 1-of-15 shooting.

· Florida limited Tennessee to season lows in points, field-goal percentage (26.8) and 3-point field-goal percentage (1-of-19, 5.3 percent). The Vols did out-rebound the Gators, 40-35.

· Florida led 26-19 at halftime as the teams grinded to an end of the half. They combined for four points – two by each team – in the final 5:50 of the first half.

· Florida outscored the Vols 41-22 in the second half to pull away. The Gators’ largest lead was 32 at 67-35 on a Dorian Finney-Smith 3-pointer with 2:43 left in the game.

· Florida had a quartet of scorers in double-figures led by Michael Frazier II (17). Scottie Wilbekin (13), Casey Prather (12) and Patric Young (10) also hit the mark. The Gators shot .481 from the floor.

VOLS SUCCESSFUL vs. DONOVAN

· Florida head coach Billy Donovan won a pair of national championships and has won 72 percent of his games in 18 seasons with the Gators.

· Tennessee however, owns a winning record against Donovan’s Gators teams, as he is 17-18 against the Volunteers.

DONOVAN KNOWS STOKES WELL

· Florida head coach Billy Donovan coached Vols junior Jarnell Stokes on the USA Basketball U18 and U19 teams each of the last two summers.

· Stokes was the second-leading scorer (14.0 ppg) and rebounder (5.6 rpg) on the U18 National Team, which went 5-0 and won gold at the 2012 FIBA Americas U18 Championship in Brazil.

· Last summer, the U19 squad went 9-0 and claimed gold at the FIBA U19 World Championship in Prague, Czech Republic. Stokes averaged 7.2 points and 4.6 rebounds.

· Florida guard Michael Frazier II also was on the 2013 U19 team.

· Stokes started all 14 games in his two summer stints under Donovan.

VOLS WON LAST GAME vs. NO. 3

· The last time Tennessee faced the third-ranked team in the AP poll, the Vols posted a dominant 83-76 upset over Pitt at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh on Dec. 11, 2010.

· That game, which was not as close as the score would indicate, was part of the 2010 SEC/Big East Invitational.

· The Gators have been ranked No. 3 in the AP poll just once for a previous clash with Tennessee, and Florida needed overtime to escape Knoxville with a 104-100 win on Jan. 9, 2002.

For the most up-to-date information about the Tennessee basketball program, visit UTsports.com/basketball and follow @Vol_Hoops on Twitter and Instagram.


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