#59 Florida Men's Basketball 2021-2022 Preview

Florida Gators
2021-2022 Overall Rank: #59
Conference Rank: #9 SEC
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Florida had an opportunity to make a decent NCAA Tournament run last year. They slipped past Virginia Tech in overtime in the First Round and then faced off against Oral Roberts who was coming off a huge upset over Ohio State. Most figured ORU could not do it again, but they beat Florida 81-78 and the Gators were one and done for the third straight tournament.
2020-21 Record: 15-10, 9-7
2020-21 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Mike White
Coach Record: 123-75 at Florida, 224-115 overall
Key Departed Players:
Tre Mann, Guard, 16.0 ppg
Noah Locke, Guard, 10.6 ppg
Scottie Lewis, Guard, 7.9 ppg
Omar Payne, Forward, 3.8 ppg
Ques Glover, Guard, 2.5 ppg
Samson Ruzhentsev, Forward, 2.0 ppg
Osayi Osifo, Forward, 1.9 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Keyontae Johnson, Senior, Forward, 16.0 ppg
Colin Castleton, Senior, Forward, 12.4 ppg
Tyree Appleby, Senior, Guard, 11.3 ppg
Anthony Duruji, Senior, Forward, 6.1 ppg
Niels Lane, Sophomore, Guard, 1.1 ppg
Jason Jitoboh, Junior, Center, 0.9 ppg
Alex Klatsky, Sophomore, Guard, 0.0 ppg
Jack May, Sophomore, Guard, 0.0 ppg
Key New Players:
CJ Felder, Junior, Forward, Transfer from Boston College
Phlandrous Fleming Jr, Senior, Guard, Transfer from Charleston Southern
Tuongthach Gatkek, Sophomore, Forward, JC Transfer
Myreon Jones, Senior, Guard, Transfer from Penn State
Elijah Kennedy, Freshman, Guard
Brandon McKissic, Senior, Guard, Transfer from Kansas City
Kowacie Reeves, Freshman, Guard
Three starters are back to form the core of this team. Colin Castleton is a beast in the paint and averaged 6.4 points and 2.3 blocks last season. He also added a healthy 12.4 points. Anthony Duruji did a lot of the dirty work in the paint and proved to be a decent scoring threat when needed. Tyree Appleby will be the leader on the perimeter after tallying 11.3 points, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals during the 2020-2021 campaign. Keyontae Johnson was the SEC’s Preseason Player of the Year heading into last season. He played in just four games before a scary injury sidelined him for the rest of the year. He has not yet been cleared to play in 2021-2022 and that certainly remains a question. Meanwhile, the Gators will have to rely heavily on their group of newcomers. Myreon Jones has been a starter for Penn State the last two season and tallied 15.3 points per game in 2020-2021. CJ Felder comes from Boston College where the 6-7 forward averaged 9.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.2 blocks last year. Phlandrous Fleming has absolutely dominated the Big South. The 6-4 guard averaged 20.1 points last season and two years ago he averaged 8.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 1.5 blocks and 1.3 steals. He may not put up huge numbers like that in the SEC, but he has the talent to make a big impact. Brandon McKissic comes from Kansas City where the four-year starter averaged 17.2 points and 3.3 assists. Coach Mike White has a few more questions than most teams this season, but the talent is there for another trip to the NCAA Tournament. Whether or not that talent can come together and become a team that can remain competitive in the tough SEC remains to be seen.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.2 (99th in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 70.3 (181, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 47.1 (41, 1)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.2 (120, 8)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.8 (225, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.6 (87, 1)
Free-Throw Percentage: 75.3 (44, 1)
Rebound Margin: 2.0 (118, 6)
Assists Per Game: 11.7 (269, 14)
Turnovers Per Game: 15.0 (292, 11)
Madness 2022 NBA Draft Rankings:
#40 Keyontae Johnson
Madness 2021 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#43 Kowacie Reeves