Chris Walker Will Put Florida Gators In Title Contention
The Florida Gators are off to another hot start this season. The Gators have won 20-plus games during each of the past 15 seasons under Billy Donovan, and this year’s team will assuredly add to that run, and might even add another championship with the addition of Chris Walker. The roster that Donovan has assembled has the Gators ranked 13th in the country, but once Walker is finally cleared to play, Florida could be one of the best teams in the country. Without their being a clear cut best team, why not Florida?
Walker was ruled ineligible for the first semester due to academic issues, but all signs point to him being eligible to play in the next few weeks. Florida has done well without Walker so far, while also dealing with Scottie Wilbekin‘s suspension and an injury to Kasey HIll. This is a deep roster that has talented players at every position, and with the addition of Walker, one of the best high school recruits from last season, the Gators are only going to get better.
Florida has the most athletic big man in college basketball, Patric Young, and Walker will give them one of the most athletic wing players in the country. With Young protecting the paint, and Walker coming over from the weak side, do not expect to see too many teams scoring in the lane against the Gators. Florida is already ranked 16th in Adjusted Defense according to KenPom.com. With Walker, expect that ranking to get higher. He is such an explosive leaper, as well as Young, and with both crashing the boards with ferocity, the Gators would also be one of the better rebounding teams in the country as well.
With a rotation that already goes eight men deep, the Gators will be adding one of the best freshmen in the country. And not just a talented freshman, a freshman who has been projected to be a lottery pick in this year’s NBA Draft for the past two years. Walker is so talented, he will immediately take a starting spot for one of the best teams in college basketball and give them even more depth.
Walker will improve an already good defensive team and make them great, and he will also take a top-20 offense, according to KenPom.com, and make them elite as well. Even if Walker was somewhat disappointing, just adding him to this current roster would still make the Gators better, but Walker will not disappoint. Walker is a perfect fit for this team — he is a great shooter, athlete, and defender — and will be the reason that their season will last a couple games longer than it would have without him. This is your warning, do not be shocked if Florida is still playing in April.
Follow Robbie on Twitter @rmarbury