Just getting back into Tupelo and cleaning out the SEC tournament notebook …
– Great job by LaDarius White at the point. Ole Miss coach Andy Kennedy used a football reference, which helps a lot of SEC fans understand more, when he compared it to losing your quarterback then handing over the offense to a guy who had played very few snaps at the position.
White had played some, but not a lot. White at the point was something Kennedy wanted to get away from this year, not because he couldn’t handle it, but because he is better elsewhere.
After Derrick Millinghaus’ magical minutes late against Missouri, White played a lot more point against Vanderbilt and Florida.
Millinghaus is an exciting player and can give you the boost that he did against Missouri. At other times he looked like the freshman that he is who was seeing the SEC tournament for the first time.
White played 34 minutes against Florida. His offense suffered at the point as he was just 1-for-7 shooting, but he had nine rebounds, four assists and only one turnover.
– Florida forward Erik Murphy, who did make the All-SEC first team, killed Ole Miss in Gainesville. He was one of the “face 4s” Kennedy has referenced, a big guy who can beat a matchup problem when he steps outside to shoot a 3. He was 5-for-6 from 3 when Ole Miss lost in Gainesville.
In the rematch Murphy was 3-for-11 from the floor, 1-for-6 from 3. As the Rebels gained momentum on defense, Murphy looked rattled, one time shooting an air ball on a 15-foot jumper.
– Gators guard Kenny Boynton made the all-tournament team, but it was Mike Rosario and reserve guard who gave Ole Miss the most trouble yesterday. Both were 3-for-5 from the arc. As desperation set in Florida jacked up a few more 3s and finished 11-for-31 after a 7-for-14 first half.
– I kept thinking through the game that Florida center Patric Young looks like Patrick Willis in the face. He plays a lot like Willis too, very physical. Young had only four rebounds though. Murphy had seven, and it was a guard, Rosario, that led the Gators with nine. The Ole Miss guards rebounded better than the Florida guards, and that was a big key in the Rebels’ plus-3 edge on the glass. Florida had a slight edge on the glass in Gainesville.
– Anthony Perez had a few good minutes against the Gators. He played a little earlier in the tournament as well, and against Florida had three rebounds in four minutes. He got off a shot during that time and also picked up two fouls.