Florida Basketball Falls to No. 15 in AP Top 25

Zach Goodall

After a fifth-straight loss to in-state rival Florida State, the Florida Gators' basketball team has taken a fall from grace following their preseason hype.

The Gators have plunged from their No. 6 ranking in the AP Top 25 to the No. 15 spot, with a 1-1 record to begin their 2019 season. The drop comes after FSU beat Florida in Gainesville by a score of 63-51, as the Gators shot only 28 percent on the night.

Despite the drop, Florida is still the second-highest ranked SEC basketball squad. Kentucky (No. 1), Auburn (No. 22) and LSU (No. 23) also represent the Southeastern Conference.

Florida entered the season with loads of hype, following Kerry Blackshear Jr.'s graduate transfer from Virginia Tech and owning the No. 8 nationally-ranked 2019 recruiting class. However, the team has yet to gel offensively. Only two players  - Blackshear and Keyontae Johnson - scored double-digit points against the Seminoles, and the Gators turned the ball over 16 times.

That just isn't a winning formula. Florida has a really good defense on paper that held FSU to only 63 points, with 18 points coming from free throws. But considering the shooting threat that Blackshear provides paired with other high-potential players, the Gators will need drastic offensive improvement throughout the year to live up to their hype.

“We’ve got a ways to go," said head coach Mike White.