Now the senior is going to have an even tougher time keeping his job.
Florida announced via Twitter on Monday afternoon that Wilbekin has been suspended indefinitely for an unspecified team rules violation, the second time in seven months coach Billy Donovan has suspended the senior guard. Wilbekin also sat out the first three games of the Gators' season last November as a result of another unspecified team rules violations.
It's unclear when Wilbekin will be reinstated, but the fact this is his second suspension suggests his status on the team could be in some jeopardy, especially if he were to get into further off-the-court trouble this summer. A Florida spokesman declined comment when asked for further information about the cause of Wilbekin's suspension and how it would impact his status with the program.
Even though Hill has the potential to be an impact freshman for Florida, a prolonged absence for Wilbekin would be damaging to the Gators. The 6-foot-2 senior-to-be averaged 9.1 points and 5.0 assists as a junior in his first season as a starter and emerged as one of the SEC's better ball-hawking perimeter defenders.
Hill is a speedy pure point guard with the ability to create for himself or his teammates off the dribble, but he could use a year as an apprentice to Wilbekin to acclimate himself to the college game and add strength in the weight room. Without Wilbekin, Florida would be thin at guard, though Rutgers transfer Eli Carter could help alleviate that problem if he were to be granted a waiver to play immediately next season.
Florida has reached the Elite Eight three straight years but has not been able to parlay that into a Final Four appearance. With Patric Young returning to anchor a strong frontcourt and a talented recruiting class set to arrive, the Gators have Final Four potential once again, but Wilbekin's inability to stay out of trouble are a threat to that goal.
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