Florida Gators basketball set to tip off 2024-25 season against South Florida Bulls

The Florida Gators men's basketball team is set to kick off their 2024-25 season against the South Florida Bulls on November 4 in Jacksonville.
SEC Basketball Tournament - Second Round
SEC Basketball Tournament - Second Round / Andy Lyons/GettyImages

The University of Florida men's basketball team is shaping up its schedule for the upcoming 2024-25 season, with finalizing an exciting opener. According to reports from Swamp247, the Gators are expected to face the South Florida Bulls on November 4 at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville.

This matchup marks a renewal of the in-state rivalry. The teams last met in December 2021 at the Orange Bowl Classic in Sunrise, Florida, with the Gators emerging victorious with a 66-55 win. However, both squads have undergone significant changes since that matchup, including both Florida and USF sporting new head coaches.

The match-up is beneficial for both squads as they look to boost their strength of schedule during the non-conference part of the season. USF won the regular season title in the AAC last year, but were left out of the NCAA tournament.

While the full schedule is still in development, several key dates have emerged. The only officially confirmed game thus far is a December 4 matchup with Virginia, part of the SEC-ACC Challenge. Additionally, reports have indicated the Gators will participate in the ESPN Events Invitational in Orlando in late November, and the annual showdown with Florida State is anticipated to take place mid-month.

Another highlight on the calendar is Florida's expected participation in the Jumpman Invitational, where they're set to face off against North Carolina on December 17. Florida's SEC slate will see them play everyone in the conference once and will play Georgia, South Carolina, and Tennessee twice.

The upcoming season carries high expectations for the Gators, following a strong 2023-24 campaign under head coach Todd Golden. Last season saw Florida notch 24 wins, the program's highest total since the 2016-17 season. The team also made a return to the NCAA Tournament, though their run was cut short with a first-round exit against Colorado.