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Florida basketball listed in NCAA Tournament as ‘last 4 byes’ by Joe Lunardi



Florida basketball
© Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

Florida basketball has had an interesting season through 22 games but Joe Lunardi has the Gators as one of the ‘last four byes’ in his bracketology.

Year two of the Todd Golden era is off to a heck of a start and Florida basketball is on the verge of its first NCAA Tournament berth since 2021.

The Gators are off to a 15-7 start to the year with nine conference games remaining and you have to think that a 6-3 record during that stretch will be good enough to get this team to the tournament. However, with games against Auburn, Alabama (twice), and South Carolina left on the schedule, going 6-3 won’t be easy. It would be tough to deny a 21-10 Florida team from the tournament with wins over Kentucky, potentially Auburn, and also potentially Alabama.

Joe Lunardi agrees.

In fact, the famous ESPN bracketologist posted his pre-Wednesday night bracketology earlier today and if the season ended, Florida would be one of the last four byes in the 2024 NCAA Tournament.

Florida would be a ‘last four bye’ along with Ole Miss, Butler, and Texas A&M. The Gators are 0-2 against the other byes this season with a one-point loss to Texas A&M recently and an 18-point road loss to Ole Miss.

The Gators do have a major opportunity to secure a spot in the projected NCAA Tournament field comfortably this weekend, hosting No. 12 Auburn. A win over the Tigers would make the Gators 16-7 on the year and would add a much-needed Quad 1 ranked win to the resume. There aren’t enough on Florida’s resume right now, but this team can be dangerous with some momentum.

Also, if Florida wins on Saturday, the Gators will have matched last season’s win total in 10 fewer games. Signs of progress are evident in Gainesville.

Connor has worked in sports journalism for over a decade, writing for multiple newspapers and college sports websites such as Fansided before starting Gator Digest. Work has been featured in Yardbarker, Bleacher Report, Yahoo!, 247 Sports, Rivals, and more.