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NCAAB: Florida versus Marquette

Back in March the Gators had some surprise success in the Sweet 16 when they upset the Golden Eagles.  Florida will not have such an easy time upsetting teams this season however.

The Gators lost one of their best players and some much needed experience in Erving Walker.  Another one of their top players, Bradley Beal was expected to be around for a long time as a freshman.  He unfortunately opted to head into the NBA early.

The Gators, however, still appear to be on top of their game.  They have won five games.  They will have to try to beat the Golden Eagles again tonight.  Marquette also has five wins, but unlike Florida Marquette has a mark in their loss column against Butler.

This will be a different team than Florida played last year, though. The Golden Eagles lost their two best players in Jae Crowder and Darius Johnson-Odom.  They were so good that I expect both those players to have big NBA careers.  Despite Marquette’s 5-1 record they are no where near as great as they once were and are not coping with the loss of their two star players very well as no one has really stepped up to fill those positions.  Florida, on the other hand, is coping much better as they have yet to be defeated.

When you look at the depth chart of both these teams it seems as though these teams are pretty evenly matched, but there is one more big factor to consider in this game:  It is being played at Florida.  Florida is a notoriously hard team to beat at home so Marquette will struggle to pull of this win.

I would not hold my breath on the Golden Eagles to get revenge on the Gators for knocking them out of the playoffs last year.  This will be a high scoring game, intense game, but I fully expect Florida to take control of this game and get the decisive victory.

The sports books at Bovada also agree with me.  Florida Gators are the favorites to win with a -10.5 point spread.   The game starts at 8 p.m. ET tonight.

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