It was ugly for Florida basketball in Oxford last night as the Gators fell to Ole Miss 103-85 to fall to 0-2 in SEC play.
Given that the Gators were considered on the outside look in the NCAA tournament heading into the game, a blowout to anyone isn't going to do much to instill confidence. And while one could write off the blowout as an off night, there are three red flags that exists for Florida as their season now hangs in the balance.
Florida Basketball Red Flags
Two Point Shooting Percentage
We all know free throw shooting for Florida is a problem, ranked 326th in the country. And frankly we could do an entire piece on the lack of free points the Gators are earning.
But we are aiming to pick more than just low hanging fruit and one area that feels like it should be better for Florida is two point shooting. While the Gators are far worse at three point shooting, the Gators are ranked 78th in the country in two point shooting percentage.
This feels like a red flag because for a squad that is constantly able to score in the 80s and has one of the better offensive efficiency rates in the country, this number should be much higher when one also considers the Gators are a much lengthier team than what they were in 2022-23.
Opponents Three Point Shooting Percentage
As noted above, the Gators are once again struggling to hit their own three point shots. But the more glaring problem for Florida has been their inability to defend the arc.
The Gators have blown far too many defensive rotations this season and are allowing opponents to hit 33.9% of their three point attempts, which is 203rd in the country.
Opponents on average are making seven three pointers per game.
Second Half Margins
Even with the loss last night, Florida is 10-5 on the season. Ignoring strength of schedule, their 67% winning percentage is tied for 84th in the country.
This makes their average margin in the second half an even bigger red flag.
The Gators are on average outscoring opponents 1.4 points in the second half, which is low for a team that has won two thirds of their games. Right now the Gators are 129th in this category.
And in their two SEC games, Florida has been outscored in the second half by margins of 10 and 14 points, giving up at least 50 points in the second half against Kentucky and Ole Miss.