June 29, 2006

Patterson attracting lots of attention

With two guards, Nick Calathes and Gary Clark, and a small forward, Adam Allen, already in the bag for the recruiting class of 2007, the Florida Gators will turn their attention to the big men as the July evaluation period draws near.

On the short list is Huntington, W.Va., forward Patrick Patterson. The Gators coaching staff has a close connection to Patterson's hometown, since Billy Donovan started his head coaching career at Marshall University in Huntington. It is also where Donovan first hooked up with longtime assistant Donnie Jones who attended graduate school at Marshall and grew up in West Virginia.

Patterson, a 6-foot-8, 225-pound forward, is a four-star prospect according to RivalsHoops and ranks among the nation's best power forwards. Patterson is known for his rebounding and defense, but has developed a mid-range jumper, which he said is now his strongest asset.

He has a long offer list that includes Florida, Wake Forest, Kentucky, Virginia Tech, Virginia, West Virginia and Cincinnati. Duke has recently come into the picture, but he has not received an offer from the Blue Devils. Patterson said there is no clear-cut favorite and no school is showing more interest than another.

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