19. Florida (16-7)
It hasn’t been easy in Gainesville this season. The Gators have had some tough losses to great teams, losing heartbreakers to Virginia, Kentucky, and last week at Texas A&M. They’ve played like a really good team at times this season, especially at home, and do have that monumental overtime road win at Kentucky less than two weeks ago. This week they added another monumental win to a resume that keeps improving.
That win came on Saturday, as the Gators welcomed Auburn to town and sent the Tigers packing after an 81-65 victory. Florida used a strong first half to pull away early, claiming their second great win of the last two weeks. Riley Kugel led all scorers with 22 points off the bench while Walter Clayton Jr. had 20 points and 6 rebounds and Zyon Pullin added 19 points and 6 rebounds.
It’s been an impressive stretch of basketball for the Gators these last three weeks, the Texas A&M loss notwithstanding. It’s not just that they are playing great ball but beating several strong opponents in this SEC. Now, the Gators are far from perfect and still are a few games back at 6-4 in league play, but winnable games against LSU and Georgia loom next week for a team looking to get back into the Big Dance.