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North Florida Game Thread

The 1-0 Huskies play host to the Ospreys on Friday night

NCAA Basketball: North Florida at Gonzaga James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

How to Watch (and bet)

Date: Friday, 11/11/22

Tip-Off Time: 8:00 pm PT

TV: Pac-12 Washington


Location: Seattle, Washington

DraftKings Betting Line: Washington Huskies -14.5


North Florida 2022-23 Statistics:

Record: 0-1 (loss at Gonzaga)

Points For per Game: 63.0 (199th of 284)

Points Against per Game: 104.0 (279th of 284)

Adjusted Offensive Efficiency: 99.4 (170th of 363)

Adjusted Defensive Efficiency: 104.2 (290th of 363)

Strength of Schedule: 3rd


North Florida Ospreys Key Players:

G-Jose Placer, Jr. 6’1, 174: 12 ppg, 2 rpg, 2 apg, 30.8% FG, 25.0% 3pt, 50.0% FT

Placer is a smaller guard but he’s the leading returning scorer and assister from last year’s North Florida team when he averaged 14.7 points and 2.8 assists per game on solid but not spectacular shooting efficiency. He wasn’t the one doing most of the distributing in their opener against Gonzaga but should have the ball in his hands more often than not anyways.

G- Jarius Hicklen, Sr. 6’3, 175: 7 ppg, 1 rpg, 5 apg, 28.6% FG, 28.6% 3pt, 33.3% FT

Last season Hicklen finished 3rd on the team in both points and assists but played more like a point guard against Gonzaga with his 5 assists. All of his attempts against the Zags came from behind the 3-point arc and the vast majority of his shots last year did as well when he made 40.1% from deep. He’s a definite potential zone buster if he gets hot.

G- Oscar Berry, So. 6’4, 190: 6 ppg, 3 rpg, 2 spg, 40.0% FG, 40.0% 3pt

The Australian sophomore transferred in from Fairleigh Dickinson where he shot 43.7% on 3’s last year and picked up right where he left off on Monday night. Just like Hicklen, expect most if not all of his shots to come from deep.

F- Jadyn Parker, So. 6’10, 180: 13 ppg, 5 rpg, 1 apg, 75.0% FG, 50.0% FT

Parker is the tallest player on North Florida’s roster at 6’10 but is also quite slender so he’s not a true center although he is their leading returning rebounder. Last year he played more of a 6th man role but appears to have moved into the starting lineup this season. Despite having the body type of a tall wing, Parker doesn’t have range out to the 3-point line and prefers to do most of damage at the rim. Although he shot a high percentage on midrange shots last year.

F- Carter Hendricksen, Sr. 6’7, 217: 16 ppg, 8 rpg, 1 apg, 40.0% FG, 25.0% 3pt, 66.7% FT

Hendricksen had the best stat line of any Osprey against Gonzaga and that shouldn’t be a huge surprise. He was 2nd on the team in both points and rebounds last year despite playing as an undersized center. On offense he takes more 3’s than 2’s so despite guarding centers on defense he’ll play on the perimeter on offense. That’s not a bad thing for the Huskies as he’s a career 32.4% 3-point shooter.


The Outlook

If you can say one thing about North Florida it’s that they won’t be awed by Washington’s size and athleticism or the difficulty of playing inside Hec Ed. That’s because they are fresh off a trip to the Kennel where they were blasted by 40 points by Gonzaga. The Huskies are going to “get to” make that trip in just about a month but for now it’s reasonable to say that there are plenty of teams out there that could lose by 40 at Gonzaga and yet could turn around and beat the Huskies on a better night.

That makes it particularly difficult to parse the results for North Florida and come away with any idea of how good they really might be. Last year this was a so-so team in the Atlantic Sun conference finishing 11-20 (7-9). An early indicator though is that so far North Florida is 5th in KenPom’s minutes continuity metric. 68.7% of their minutes in the opener were from players that were on last year’s roster which includes 4 of their 5 starters. Whatever their natural talent level, this is a team that has some experience playing together which is dangerous particularly early against a Husky team without that luxury.

It also seems likely that we can expect a lot of 3-pointers. Last season North Florida finished 8th in the country in the percentage of their shots from behind the arc at basically 50/50. Against Gonzaga they had 4 of their starters attempt at least 5 deep shots each and it was almost 67% for that grouping.

Washington held Weber State to 4/23 on their 3-point shooting but some of that involved some wide open misses. The Huskies were also more effective when they played their zone than when they went man to start the game. This game will likely come down to whether North Florida is able to get hot on the perimeter. Last season Northern Illinois upset the Dawgs shooting 12/23 on their 3-pointers despite ranking just 270th in 3-pt % over the entire season. It’s a high variance strategy and when they don’t fall you end up seeing margins like the 40-point loss to Gonzaga.

It remains to be seen if Noah Williams plays in this game for Washington after exiting the opener on Monday at halftime with a leg injury. I’m leaning towards no which means the Huskies will have to rely on PJ Fuller and Keyon Menifield Jr. to direct the offense. This could be another game where both teams approach 20+ turnovers and it looks quite sloppy.

This isn’t an NCAA tournament North Florida team by any stretch but they are solid for a mid-major in a buy game. This is absolutely a team capable of upsetting a Washington squad that loses focus particularly if they see a few early outside shots go down. I’m expecting that to happen early but Washington much as they did on Monday eventually settles down a bit on offense and goes on a run to keep the Ospreys grounded.


Washington Huskies- 75, North Florida Ospreys- 64