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SEC action pits Gators against Bulldogs

The 19th-ranked Florida Gators will look to remain perfect at home as they host the Georgia Bulldogs for an SEC matchup at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center tonight.

This will be the 204th meeting between the programs in the storied rivalry. Florida is the most frequent opponent for the Bulldogs in their history. The Gators have taken an advantage in the series by winning 14 of the past 16 meetings. In Gainesville, the Gators have won 60-of-93 contests.

Georgia is 9-6 after losing to Alabama 74-59 in its conference opener on Saturday. Before the loss, the Bulldogs won five in a row. The Gators will be the third ranked opponent Georgia faces, having lost to California and Xavier when the two programs were in the top-25. Head coach Mark Fox led his team to a 9-7 finish in the SEC last season, its best league record in eight years. The Bulldogs will need to rebound better to return to their honorable conference record of last season, as they were bested on the boards 31-17 in their opener by Alabama. Georgia is ranked last in the conference in scoring offense with an average of just 62.9 ppg.

The Bulldogs are led by the duo of Gerald Robinson and Kentavious Caldwell- Pope. Caldwell-Pope leads the team in scoring with an average of 14.6 ppg. The freshman guard has been on fire lately, averaging 17.3 ppg in his last four games. Robinson is second on the team in scoring with an average of 13.6 ppg and the top assist man with 3.3 apg. Robinson struggled in the SEC opener versus Alabama, scoring 11 points on 5-of-15 shooting and committing four turnovers in the loss. Georgia will be without its top rebounder Marcus Thornton as he recovers from a knee injury.

Florida's offense has been a well-oiled machine as it is averaging 83.6 ppg (fifth best in the nation). The Gators had been held under 70 points on just one occasion this season before being shut down in their 67-56 loss to Tennessee on Saturday. The 56-point performance was the worst of the season for the Gators. Two of Florida's losses were to then top-five ranked opponents (Syracuse and Ohio State). Florida is a tough rebounding team, ranking second in the conference with a plus-5.3 margin on the boards.

Kenny Boynton is the leading scorer and ranks second best in the SEC with an average of 19.1 ppg. Boynton has accumulated nine 20-plus scoring performances already this season and picked up the SEC Player of the Week Award once. Erving Walker is a very steady point guard for Florida, as he leads the conference with a 2.2 assist-to-turnover ratio and is second best with 5.1 apg. Erik Murphy has picked up his play lately. The junior forward has scored in double figures in six of the last seven games and is averaging 12.9 ppg over that span. Murphy led the team in its loss to Tennessee with 13 points and four blocks.