Kansas State Defeats No. 8 Florida in 67-61 Upset

Chris HummerAnalyst IDecember 22, 2012

December 19, 2012; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida Gators center Patric Young (4) dunks against the Southeastern Louisiana Lions during the second half at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center. Florida Gators defeated the Southeastern Louisiana Lions 82-43. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Florida stepped into Kansas City looking to continue its early-season roll, but Kansas State ensured that that just wasn't going to happen.

Less than a week after the Gators' heart-breaking, last-second loss at the hands of Arizona, Florida did not rebound well in a neutral-site game against the Wildcats.

A scrappy Kansas State squad held down an explosive Florida team to just 61 points, well below their season average, thanks to a dogged effort on the defensive end of the floor. The Wildcats attacked the Florida players for the entirety of the game, pressuring them from end to end.

Kansas State played well enough on offense to earn the win. Junior guard Will Spradling led the team with 17 points, including three makes from distance. He also added six rebounds and five assists in an impressive all-around effort.

His backcourt mate, senior guard Rodney McGruder, also played well, adding 13 points and six rebounds.

Florida found success by pounding an undersized Wildcat roster down low. Center Patric Young had a fantastic game, dominating in the paint with 19 points and 10 rebounds.

However, it wasn't enough. The Gators shot only 40 percent from the field and just 26 percent from three.

The loss drops Florida to 8-2 on the season and will likely knock the Gators out of the Top 10 in the national rankings..

It’s a huge win for Kansas State and first-year head coach Bruce Weber, though.

The win signals that the Wildcats will be contenders in an underwhelming Big 12, despite the loss of former head coach Frank Martin. But more importantly, the victory should provide a huge momentum boost as Kansas State prepares to enter Big 12 play.