Florida Gators basketball coach Mike White joined Florida Gators football Jim McElwain on Tuesday night at the University Auditorium to speak to University of Florida students.
White and McElwain both took questions from the students in attendance about their respective programs.
In this two-part series we bring you a notebook from what White had to say about his basketball program.
• Kira White (Mike’s wife) grew up dreaming of playing for Mary Wise and loves to be able to go watch her coach. Kira played at Ole Miss.
• Called University of Florida a “destination program”
• “UF is not an NIT program, it is a NCAA championship program, we are building back to that”
• White is selling to recruits Florida is a place of excellence, with great coaches and a place where players will succeed. He also sells the fact of the entire athletic program being excellent, bringing up NBA and NFL players, as well as future and past Olympians.
• The most exciting game of the year was against West Virginia, where White says he saw the O-Dome in full force.
• On his playing career- “ I was a great fouler. I would foul you and hope they wouldn’t call them all. I played basketball with a football mentality”
• White spoke to Billy Donovan “a bunch” early on in his tenure and says Billy is so proud of what has been built.
• Speaking on transfers.. “any guy who averaged 10 and 8 and can make a free throw can help us” then Mac interrupted with a “kinda like making a field goal?”
• White said that over 100 recruits has been crossed of their board due to social media.
• He tries very hard not to get overly consumed with refs and bad call.
• When asked which former Gators he would have liked to coach, White answered with “Tauren Green, Corey Brewer, Jokaim Noah, Al Horford, Lee Humphrey. “ Not a bad selection.
• White joked that he could beat all 15 guys in a free throw contest.
• “If my career wasn’t in basketball it would be in football.”
• Keith Stone totally changed his body. Measures in a 6’8 250 lbs. now. “Most productive redshirt year I have ever been a part of in 16 years. He was the focal point of all the scouting team purposes. He got to go get buckets. He is going to be a good player”
• White said to expect some “action” involving the roster sometime soon.
• White spoke about Eric Hester’s 6-9 wingspan on his 6-3 body. “Can be a real solid Gator, has a chance to be a great defender.”
• Getting back to a winning culture is the emphasis. Wants to get the bulk of the roster to be 4-year players with consistency and continuity. Noted the 2014 final four run was comprised of this formula.
Overall interesting little insight to Coach White:
It seemed like the two coaches really had a good relationship and were smiling and cracking jokes. It will be interesting to see what the roster looks like next fall for the season and what happens with the guard play. I believe will be the key to the upcoming season.