Gator Basketball: Freshman Brad Beal Paces Florida to Win

Rick GillispieCorrespondent IINovember 22, 2011

COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 15: Brad Beal #23 of the Florida Gators knocks the ball away from Aaron Craft #4 of the Ohio State Buckeyes during their game at Value City Arena on November 15, 2011 in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State defeated Florida 81-74. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Freshman Brad Beal had a career night with 22 points. The Florida Gators held off a pesky Wright State team to win by 13. Junior Kenny Boynton also dropped in 22 for the Gators. 

Florida held a 15-point halftime lead before being outscored in the second half. The game was never really in doubt. Things have come to light for the Gators in their quest back to the top of college basketball.

Let's take a look at this game, for example. Senior Erving Walker's shooting. We all know the Gators are shooters. Nowhere on the court is safe, but Walker hasn't really shown that this year. He was 2-9 from the field for a total of nine points on the night. He's not the only one.

Patric Young is a big body. Against teams like Wright State, he needs to make his presence felt down low. Shooting 1-7 from the field will not cut it. His seven rebounds for the night is also too low. 

The Gators are a very balanced team. Any night somebody new could lead the team in scoring. With that said, one thing is for sure: Kenny Boynton is the leader of this team. Boynton is playing great and should be on everybody's all SEC team so far this year. Beal is another bright spot for the Gators. With all the talk about the freshmen at Kentucky, Beal might be the best in the SEC—if not the country. 

Florida will need their bench to score more also, especially once SEC play gets here. Players like Mike Rosario, Will Yequete and Scottie Wilbekin will need to produce more. Rosario had a good game against Wright State, scoring 11 points and bringing down seven rebounds.

Florida will be fine this year. My biggest concern is letting teams like Wright State come back. If you do that in the SEC, you will get burned.