Gators’ March Madness Run Made Tougher

By Allen Moody

If the Florida Gators are going to make any March Madness run this season, they’ll do so without John Egbunu. Florida’s center tore his ACL in Tuesday’s game at Auburn. While not a devastating loss, it’s not easy to replace 6-foot-11, 255 pounder.

The junior transfer from South Florida was averaging 22 minutes a game with 7.8 points and a team-high 6.6 rebounds. He wasn’t quite up to last year’s standards, but was wasn’t playing poorly and gave the team a solid inside presence on defense.

In his absence, the team will look to Justin Leon and Kevarrius Hayes, although neither can match Egbunu’s size and strength.

The Gators will be put to the test shortly. After Saturday’s game with Mississippi State, the team has games with No. 21 South Carolina and No. 13 Kentucky and the Wildcats will be looking for revenge for an earlier 88-66 drubbing at the hands of Florida.

The Gators don’t have a go-to type of player and have seven players averaging over 20 minutes a game and a few of the big men are going to have to step up and eat a few more minutes on a nightly basis.

The Gators are +2912 at Bookmaker to win the NCAA Tournament and while they were always a bit of a longshot, the task just got a little bit tougher.