GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- It's coming. You can almost smell the office copy machine spitting out fresh stacks of blank brackets, ready for your NCAA Tournament predictions. But let's not get carried away with our imaginations, OK? The No. 13 Florida Gators still have a lot of work to do before the postseason. The journey continues, as the Gators (22-7, 10-4 in the SEC) visit the Vanderbilt Commodores (20-9, 9-5) tonight at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN (or you can watch the game right here). Check the bottom of this blog for some factoids from our friends at ESPN Stats & Info.
In this week’s version of ESPN Insider Jay Bilas’ top 68 rankings, the Gators fall to No. 13.
Andy Katz drops Florida down to No. 3 in the conference and continues to be baffled by the Gators.
DIckie V has Florida dropping to No. 16. Oh, baby.
Florida was ranked No. 10 in last Thursday's update.
College Basketball Power Index (BPI)
Florida is ranked No. 12.
Florida is back in at No. 11, but that was before last weekend's loss at Georgia.
Eamonn Brennan has some scathing -- but hard-to-dispute -- criticism of Florida and its dependence on the 3-point shot.
Dana O'Neil sympathizes with Florida's plight after losing forward Will Yeguete to injury. She has some suggestions for how the Gators can survive.
Looks like Florida is a No. 4 seed ... for now.
The SEC Tournament doesn't start for nearly a week and a half, but here's an early look at the proceedings in New Orleans, La. And here's an overall look at Championship Week.
Official visits. Unofficial visits. Leaders. We have all the latest on the best available in the 2012 class, including Gator targets Nerlens Noel, Anthony Bennett and Jakarr Sampson.
Suddenly scouts are rushing to downgrade the 2012 draft. That may or may not be good news for Florida fans anxious to see if freshman SG Bradley Beal or sophomore PF Patric Young could make the leap. Are those two Gators not ready or could there be more opportunity for them to be drafted high this summer?
Florida drops to a No. 10 seed.
No. 8 seed Florida gets started against No. 9-seeded Auburn on Thursday at 1 p.m.
ESPN STATS & INFORMATION
No. 13 Florida at Vanderbilt
Tonight, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN
• The game will feature two of the nation’s most prolific teams from the 3-point line. Florida and Vanderbilt either rank first or second in the conference in 3s attempted, 3s made and 3-point percentage. When the two teams met on Feb. 4, they combined to attempt 49 3s, which is tied for the most in a SEC game this season.
• Florida averages 10 made 3-pointers a game this season. The Gators are 17-2 they make 10 or more 3s; they’re 5-5 when they make nine or fewer. In a 14-point loss at Georgia on Saturday, the Gators made a season-low five 3s and shot a season-low 21.7 percent from the 3-point line. Florida has attempted 743 3s this season, the second most in the nation. The Gators are shooting 39.4 percent on these attempts, 17th best in the nation. Florida is shooting 46.2 percent from the 3-point line with 10 seconds or less left on the shot clock during conference play.
• Florida has run the 11th-most pick-and-roll plays this season with Erving Walker often handling the ball. The Gators are shooting 51.2 percent on passes from Walker on pick-and-roll plays. When Walker looks for his own offense, he scores on 46.2 percent of his pick-and-roll plays.
• Vanderbilt is tied for 11th in the nation in transition efficiency this season, averaging 1.21 points per play. John Jenkins and Jeffrey Taylor have been a big reason why, ranking first and third in the SEC in points per play. Yet, Jenkins and Taylor score differently in transition. Jenkins attempts 50.9 percent of his field goals in transition from behind the 3-point line and shoots 57.1 percent on those attempts. Taylor attempts 77.8 percent of his transition field goals from inside the 3-point line and makes 82.9 percent of these attempts.
• Vanderbilt had success running against Florida on Feb. 4 with a SEC season-high 18 transition plays that led to 18 points. In the half court, the Commodores struggled, shooting 40 percent and committing 14 turnovers.
• Jenkins is shooting 42 percent from the 3-point line on catch-and shoot attempts this season, including 49 percent when left unguarded.