Monday, April 20, 2015

Top 3 Gator Point Guards

As my sophomore year comes to a close, I will begin embarking on a new Top 5 series. Just recently, I finished listing my Top 5's for each position in Gator football history. Now, I will do the same by listing my Top 3 players for all five positions in Gator basketball history! I figured with the lesser amount of players in basketball, naming just a Top 3 would be perfectly suitable. So without further adieu, here are my Top 3 Point Guards to ever play basketball for the Florida Gators.

#3 Jason "White Chocolate" Williams (1997)
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Jason Williams (nicknamed White Chocolate) is a personal favorite of mine because he was on the 2006 Miami Heat team that won the NBA Finals. When I found out he attended the University of Florida, I was ecstatic and knew I had to find a way to get him on this list.

Williams was a transfer from Marshall who played just one season at UF. He had played for head coach Billy Donovan while at Marshall and followed Donovan when he took the job at Florida in 1996. During his time at Florida, he averaged 17.1 points per game and scored 341 total points. He also averaged 6.7 assists while dishing out 134 assists. He maintained a 48% field goal shooting percentage, a shooting percentage of 40% from three-point land, and an 84% free throw percentage. Defensively he had 59 rebounds, 53 steals, and four blocks.

Williams had a chronic problem with marijuana use, and he was suspended from the Gator basketball team in February of 1998 for the rest of the season. He had been suspended two times prior for the same reason.

Despite missing out on all of March, Williams entered the 1998 NBA Draft and went 7th overall to the Sacramento Kings. He made the NBA All-Rookie First Team and played four seasons for the Kings. He would then be traded to the Memphis Grizzlies before making his way to the Miami Heat and winning an NBA Championship. Williams would retire after the Heat, come out of the retirement to play three seasons for the Orlando Magic, then end his career as a Memphis Grizzly in 2011. He scored 8,286 points with 4,611 assists and 933 steals in his NBA career.

#2 Taurean Green (2004-2006)
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(#11 in the middle)

Taurean Green was the starting point guard for the legendary Gator teams that won back-to-back National Championships in 2005 and 2006. As a member of the Orange and Blue, Green was a prolific offensive force as he tallied 1,174 total points and 400 assists while averaging 10.6 points and 3.6 assists per game. He shot 40% from the field, 39% from three-point land, and 86% from the free throw line. On the defensive side, he brought down 242 rebounds with 124 steals and seven blocks.

In addition to winning two National Championships, Green's only other collegiate accomplishment includes being named MVP of the 2006 SEC Tournament. After his junior year, Green entered the 2007 NBA Draft and was selected 52nd overall in the second round by the Portland Trail Blazers. He played just 17 total NBA games between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Denver Nuggets before leaving the league in 2008.

He currently plays overseas and just recently won an LNB Pro A Championship with Limoges CSP in 2014. His current team is ASVEL Basket in France.

#1 Scottie Wilbekin (2010-2013)
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Rounding out my list at No.1 is Scottie Wilbekin. Scottie is the only Gator on this list to have a senior year as he stayed for all four of his collegiate seasons. Scottie broke out his senior year as he averaged 13.1 points and 3.6 assists per game. He left Florida with a stat line of  953 total points, 419 assists, a 42% shooting percentage, a 38% three-point shooting percentage, and a 71% free throw percentage. Scottie was mostly lauded for his defensive prowess as he registered 294 rebounds, 167 steals, and five blocks in his career.

Florida saw tremendous postseason success during Wilbekin's tenure as he helped lead the Gators to three Elite Eights and a Final Four appearance. In addition, some other awards of his include:
  • Third-team All-American in 2014
  • SEC Player of the Year in 2014
  • First-team All-SEC in 2014
  • SEC All-Defensive Team in 2013 & 2014
After losing his last collegiate game to UConn in the 2014 Final Four in Dallas, Wilbekin would not be drafted in the 2014 NBA Draft. That did not keep him down, however, as he signed with Cairns Taipans in Australia. After a season down under, Wilbekin signed a contract with AEK Athens in Greece and still plays there now. Maybe one day Scottie will get his shot at making an NBA roster.

I hope you enjoyed this Top 3 article! In due time I will be coming out with the next part of this series that includes my Top 3 Gator Shooting Guards! Until then, stay tuned for my other articles!

*All stats accredited to &, & of course "The Source"

*All photo accredited to,, &

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