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High-scoring Florida, Michigan meet in Jumpman Invitational


Two high-powered offenses will be on show when Florida and Michigan meet Tuesday in the Jumpman Invitational in Charlotte, N.C.

Florida comes in averaging 82.3 points per game, while Michigan is scoring 82.2. The last time the schools had such potent attacks, they both nearly won national titles.

The 1999-00 Billy Donovan-coached Gators averaged 83.8 points per game and lost 89-76 in the 2000 NCAA final to Michigan State.

Michigan’s 1992-93 team scored 81.9 per contest, when current coach Juwan Howard was a player in the Wolverines’ famed “Fab Five” that lost the 1993 final to North Carolina, 77-71.

Florida (7-3) struggled to a 70-65 neutral-court win over East Carolina on Thursday.

“I think as our program continues to mature, these are the types of wins that build character,” Florida coach Todd Golden said after the game. “They build trust. They build belief.”

But Michigan (6-5) cruised to an 83-66 win Saturday over visiting Eastern Michigan in Howard’s first game back as head coach after mid-September heart surgery.

Michigan is led by point guard Dug McDaniel at 17.9 points per game, while forward Olivier Nkamhoua averages 16.5 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Terrance Williams II (11.2 ppg) and Nimari Burnett (10.2 ppg) are inside-outside threats.

“That’s just the unselfishness of this group,” Howard said after five players scored in double figures against Eastern Michigan. “Just showed the guys are really sharing the basketball.’

The Gators get 16.5 points per game from guard Walter Clayton Jr. (22-of-60 on 3-pointers). Tyrese Samuel (13.9 ppg), Zyon Pullin (12.7 ppg) and Riley Kugel (12.4 ppg) round out the Florida attack.

The game could be decided in the paint. Florida is top-five in the nation with 16.7 offensive rebounds and the Gators get 26.7 foul shots per game, both advantages over Michigan’s per-game averages of 11.4 offensive rebounds and 19.2 free-throw attempts.

Michigan leads the series between the two schools 3-1 since 1988. The schools have met three times in the NCAA Tournament — all Michigan wins — the latest a 64-49 Michigan victory in the tournament’s second round in 2019.

–Field Level Media

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