BTH UALR Gameday: Waiting to see who will be available for Trojans, Gators

Just who will be suiting up for both teams today remains a bit of a mystery.

UALR (0-1) travels to Gainesville, Fla., to take on Florida (1-1) at 3:30 p.m. Central today. The game will be televised by Sun Sports and is also available via Watch ESPN (ESPN3).

UALR senior forward Will Neighbour played in last Monday’s opener vs. North Florida after re-injuring his shoulder in practice. But he wasn’t as effective as expected and his status isn’t completely clear for today’s game. And junior guard Ben Dillard didn’t play Monday due to a back injury. His status has also not been cleared up.

Florida also has some issues due to injuries and suspensions. The most notable is the suspensions of Dorian Finney-Smith, Damontre Harris and Scottie Wilkbekin. None of the three have played so far this season. On Friday, Donovan reinstated Finney-Smith, a 6-8 sophomore. But Finney-Smith is ill and would need to recover a bit to play (expect him to play).

Harris, a 6-10 junior, and Wilkbekin, a 6-2 senior, remain suspended. Wilkbekin is apparently practicing with the team though while Harris is not.

Dillon Graham didn't play vs. Wisconsin on Tuesday and still isn't at 100 percent with his hip injury.

Florida appears to have survived a couple of injury scares in Tuesday’s game against Wisconsin. Both Casey Prather (6-6 senior) and Will Yeguete (6-8 senior) went down with injuries during that game but returned.


Florida has the type of size that can totally expose UALR on both ends of the court. The Gators will likely start 6-1, 6-6, 6-6, 6-8 and 6-9 and bring 6-6, 6-8, 6-10 off the bench. UALR has a little bit of size but zero depth on the front line. That means sophomore James White, junior Gus Leeper and senior Will Neighbour have got to stay on the court.


.       REBOUND: It’s likely that the No. 1 key for every game for the remainder of the season will be rebounding. Florida has size and UALR’s got to block out. Winning rebounding might be too much to ask for a UALR team that just got pounded 41-29 by North Florida. But the Trojans need to keep rebounding reasonably close to keep the game close.
2.       BOMBS AWAY: Yes, UALR needs to drive to the basket. Yes, UALR needs to try and draw fouls on Florida. Yes, UALR needs to get to the free throw line. But the reality is with Florida’s size advantage, UALR is going to have to make some threes.
3.       VALUE THE BALL: UALR was great from a turnover standpoint against North Florida (even with UNF pressing most of the game). UALR has to keep turnovers close today.


Florida is favored by 20 points in Las Vegas.