COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 15: Patric Young #4 and Erving Walker #11 of the Florida Gators defend against Jared Sullinger #0 of the Ohio State Buckeyes during first half action at Value City Arena on November 15, 2011 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

NCAA Basketball: Florida Gators Fall To Ohio State, 81-74, In Opening Week Clash Of Top Ten Teams

The Gators traveled to Columbus for a formidable first week matchup against the Buckeyes.

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Florida Vs. Ohio State: Gators Fall To Buckeyes In Columbus, 81-74

In one of the biggest games in this opening week of the NCAA basketball season, the Ohio State Buckeyes defeated the Florida Gators, 81-74, at Value City Arena in Columbus. It was a respectable first week effort by the Gators on the road against one of the top five teams in the country. Florida was paced on the offensive end by fab freshman Brad Beal, who poured in 17 points but made some freshman mistakes, turning the ball over five times and going just 6 of 16 from the field. Buckeyes point guard Aaron Craft countered the Gator guards and led the Buckeyes in all facets the game, "dominating from start to finish," according to Gator coach Billy Donovan.

Kenny Boynton, Erik Murphy, and Patric Young all chipped in with double digit scoring games. Murphy was four for four from three, as the Gators shot 50% from behind the arc to keep it reasonably close. Florida had a size advantage and out-rebounded the Buckeyes, but the Gators were plagued by missed free throws and turnovers. They coughed it up 16 times and missed eight crucial free throws.

Florida will look to rebound on Thursday night against a much less daunting opponent as they host the North Florida Ospreys at the O'Connell Center.

For more on the match up between the Florida Gators and the Ohio State Buckeyes, visit SB Nation's Florida blog Alligator Army and Ohio State blog Along The Olentangy.

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Florida Vs. Ohio State: Gators Look To Add Early Signature Win

The Florida Gators will be looking to avenge last season's 17 point loss to Ohio State when they travel to Columbus tonight.

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NCAA Basketball Schedule, TV Times And More: Florida Faces Ohio State On Tuesday

Florida State and South Florida are both in action this week as well, but the biggest matchup by far will come when the Florida Gators face the Ohio State Buckeyes on Tuesday.

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