Right after Austin Rivers de-committed from Florida, rumors started to float around that Bradley Beal might back away from the Gators, too, and that he had other options that might suit him better.
Beal, who's been committed since late November, said at a recent tournament near Los Angeles that any talk of that is untrue and that he's sticking with Florida even though Rivers could end up elsewhere.
Why? The St. Louis (Mo.) Chaminade shooting guard said Florida's style of play suits him perfectly on both ends and that he has a good and solid relationship with coach Billy Donovan.
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Duke, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, Ohio State and others have been involved but Beal said he likes what Florida has to offer best.
"It's still solid as I know of right now," Beal said. "I still talk to coach Donovan every week and talk to the rest of the staff pretty much every week so I'm still solid with them.
"I like their style of play really. I found a system that really fits me best. The offense is great and I like the defense because it's full court and it's always up and down and that's the style I like to play."
Rivals.com rates Beal as the fifth-best prospect in the 2011 class, a fantastic outside shooter, something Florida has desperately missed in recent seasons. Beal can create his own shot, spot up and hit jumpers and he has a nice, quick release.
No shooting guard is rated higher by Rivals.com. Rivers is second on the list and sixth in the country. It was a disappointing move when Rivers, from Winter Park, Fla., backed out of his Florida pledge but the 6-foot-3 guard had to do what he felt best, Beal said.
Duke has emerged as the leader for Rivers, who could still end up with the Gators but is certainly looking at other places. Beal said he's fine with it and that Florida is the best situation for him with or without Rivers at this point.
"That's his decision," Beal said. "I can't tell him where to go, that's his choice. It's his future so I can't choose for him. I wish him the best wherever he goes but it's his choice. It happens. There's nothing you can do about it. You just have to live with it."