At a time when the football series between Florida and Miami is on an indefinite hiatus, the two in-state rivals will soon be renewing acquaintances on the basketball floor.
Florida and Miami announced Tuesday that they will begin a home-and-home series next season with the first meeting in Gainesville in 2014 and the return date in Coral Gables the following year.
The two teams last played a home-and-home series in 2004 and 2005, though they have since met in the postseason NIT in 2009. Florida won that NIT game 74-60 and holds a 45-22 edge in the all-time series against the Hurricanes.
The timing of the renewal of the series is ideal for Florida for several reasons.
First, Miami is poised to bounce back from a rebuilding year last season thanks to the addition of transfers Angel Rodriguez and Sheldon McClellan and the arrival of a top 25 recruiting class. Secondly, the Gators will be barnstorming across the state anyway during the early portion of the 2015-16 season due to the renovation of their arena, so the timing of a road game at Miami makes perfect sense.
The Miami game will add to an already challenging 2014-15 schedule for a Florida team with the potential to return to a second straight Final Four. The Gators also compete at the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament (Nov. 26-28), visit Kansas (Dec. 5) and meet Wake Forest at the Orange Bowl Classic in Sunrise (Dec. 20).
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