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Wednesday March 20, 2013 Midwest has been best for Gators; South not so much

Austin 1

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The Florida Gators will open NCAA Tournament play in the Midwest, but not in the Midwest Region. Too bad, because America’s Heartland has been good to the Gators, who won both their national championships out of the Midwest bracket.

Instead, the 2013 Gators (26-7) are the No. 3 seed in the South Region, where they’ll face 14th-seeded Northwestern State (23-8) in Friday’s pod at the Erwin Center on the campus of the University of Texas. This will be the fifth time among the program’s 18 NCAA tournaments the team has started in the South (or Southeast) and only once (2011 in Tampa) have the Gators survived the weekend.

The Texas capital city of Austin (pictured above and below) will be the 24th different city to which UF has been dispatched in NCAA play.

Here’s a look at the Gators accumulative success by regions, along with a review of the previous NCAA stops.

Austin 2EAST REGION
Times: 5
Record: 12-6 (.666)
When: 1987, 1994, 2000, 2004, 2005

SOUTH REGION
Times: 4
Record: 5-4 (.555)
When: 1995 2001, 2003, 2011

MIDWEST REGION
Times: 4
Record: 12-2 (.857)
When: 1989, 2002, 2006, 2007  
 
WEST REGION
Times: 4
Record: 6-4 (.600)
When: 1988, 1999, 2010, 2012

And now for the wheres, listed according to number of games (record at venue in parenthesis).

6
New Orleans (4-2)
2001 (South Region 3 seed)
2007 (Midwest Region semifinal and final as 1 seed)
2011 (Southeast Region 2 seed)

Austin 34
Indianapolis (3-1)
2000 (Final Four as East Region champion; semifinal and final)
2006 (Final Four as Midwest Region champion; semifinal and final)

4
Syracuse, N.Y. (3-1)
1987 (East Region 6 seed; 2000 East Region semifinal and final 5 seed)

4
Tampa, Fla. (3-1)
2003 (Midwest Region 2 seed)
2011 (Southeast Region 2 seed)

3
Phoenix (1-2)
1999 (West Region semifinal as 6 seed)
2012 (West Region semifinal and final as 7 seed)

2
Uniondale, N.Y (2-0)
1994 (East Region 3 seed)

2
Miami (2-0)
1994 (East Region semifinal and final 3 seed)

Austin 42
Seattle (2-0)
1999 (West Region 6 seed)

2
Winston-Salem, N.C. (2-0)
2000 (East Region 5 seed)

2
Jacksonville, Fla. (2-0)
2006 (Midwest Region 3 seed)

2
Minneapolis (2-0)
2006 (Midwest Region semifinal and final as 3 seed)

2
St. Louis
2007 (Midwest Region semifinal and final as 1 seed)

Austin 52
Atlanta (2-0)
2007 (Final Four as Midwest champion; semifinal and final)  

2
Omaha, Neb. (2-0)
2012 (NCAA West Region as 7 seed)

2
Salt Lake City (1-1)
1988 (East Region 6 seed)

2
Nashville, Tennessee (1-1)
2005 (East Region 4 seed)

1
Charlotte, N.C. (0-1)
1994 (Final Four as East Region champion)

Austin map1
East Rutherford, N.J. (0-1)
1987 (East Region Semifinal 6 seed)

1
Dallas (0-1)
1989 (East Region 7 seed)

1
Tallahassee, Fla. (0-1)
1995 (Southeast Region 10 seed)

1
Chicago (0-1)
2002 (Midwest Region 5 seed)

1
Raleigh, N.C. (0-1)
2004 (East Region 5 seed)

1
Oklahoma City, Okla. (0-1)
2010 (West Region 10 seed)

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