TALE OF THE TAPE

Round Of 16 Matchup: #1 Florida Vs. #4 UCLA

#1 Florida
#4 UCLA
(credit: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(credit: Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
(credit: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(credit: Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Coaching
Winner Billy Donovan and his Florida Gators have not lost a game since Dec. 2. In his 18-year career at Florida, Donovan has won two NCAA championships and has made it to the Elite Eight in each of the past three seasons. Making it back this year is expected.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Steve Alford is in his first season as the head coach at UCLA, after a successful stint at New Mexico. He has his Bruins in the Sweet 16 after back-to-back March Madness appearances with the Lobos. He has really helped turn things around at UCLA, but he might be overmatched here.
Offense
Despite being the overall No. 1 seed, Florida only ranks 181st in the nation in offensive points scored. After barely doing what they needed to beat Albany in their first game, they looked a bit better in manhandling Pittsburgh, but it was not the offense that was on display here. Only two players scored in double digits in the Panthers win, with Scottie Wilbekin leading the way with 21.
Winner The Bruins are the complete opposite of the Gators. While Florida uses a strong defense to make up for a lack of scoring, UCLA has a powerful offense that needs to outscore their opponents to win. Ranked 12th in the nation and led by Jordan Adams (40 points in the first two games), these Bruins can score a lot of points, fast.
Defense
Winner The reason the Gators are ranked so high is because of their defense, which is ranked third best in the nation (57.5). After letting Albany score 55 against them, they shut down Pittsburgh, only allowing the Panthers to put up 45 points on 37.3 percent shooting. The Gators out-rebounded Pitt, 38-31, and finished that game with 10 steals.
While UCLA has a great offense that can put up a lot of points, their defense ranks 178th in the nation. The first two Bruins wins were by blowouts, but Tulsa and SF Austin are not teams to really stack against in the March Madness tournament. They did hold the two teams to 37 percent shooting with Kyle Anderson pulling down 13 defensive rebounds, but they will have to do a lot more against the Gators offense.
Bench Depth
The Gators only used three bench players against Pittsburgh, but both averaged over 20 minutes. Neither Kasey Hill nor Dorian Finney-Smith is a scorer, but both are solid role players that allow the Gators to rotate their stars to keep them fresh.
Winner The Bruins believe in rotation and have three bench players who put in a lot of minutes in Tony Parker, Zach LaVine and Bryce Alford. Parker and Alford are the two to watch, as they can score a lot of points in reserve roles.

We'll Just Call it a Tie

(credit: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) (credit: Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

While this looks like a tie, with UCLA having the advantage on offense and the bench, the Florida Gators are a very strong team. This is a game that could be the most exciting of the tournament, with a great offense battling a great defense, but if the Super Bowl showed the world anything, it was that a great defense can really shut down a great offense. Florida should leave this game with the win by about four.

Shawn S. Lealos is a freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience in the media He covers all things college basketball. Find his work at Examiner.com.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 25:  Odell Beckham #13 of the New York Giants breaks a tackle by Josh Norman #24 of the Washington Redskins in the second half at MetLife Stadium on September 25, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 25:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers runs the ball against Everson Griffen #97 and Tom Johnson #92 of the Minnesota Vikings in the 1st half during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: New York Giants At Minnesota Vikings

    The Vikings defense has annihilated every opponent so far. Can they do it to the explosive Giants offense this week?

  2. KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 25: Center Mitch Morse #61 of the Kansas City Chiefs prepares to snap the ball to Alex Smith #11 at Arrowhead Stadium during the second quarter of the game against the New York Jets on September 25, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25: Quarterback  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers passes against  Bennie Logan #96 of the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Kansas City Chiefs At Pittsburgh Steelers

    The Chiefs and Steelers battle it out in a match-up of AFC playoff contenders.

  3. ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 25:  Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws against the Chicago Bears in the fourth quarter at AT&T Stadium on September 25, 2016 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Running back Carlos Hyde #28 of the San Francisco 49ers rushes for a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 25, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. The Seahawks defeated the 49ers 37-18.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
    Week 4 Tale Of The Tape: Dallas Cowboys At San Francisco 49ers

    The Cowboys have been rolling with rookie QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliott. They look to continue that momentum this week.

See All Tales of the Tape

More From CBS Philly

Guide To Oktoberfests And Other Fall Beer Events
Sign Up Now!
Taz Goes Big!

Listen Live