Boys basketball: Class 4A state final preview — March 1, 2024

Boys Basketball State finals

All games at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland.  Admission is $15 on the day of the event. Parking is $10.

Class 4A
Gibbs (26-5) vs. Jacksonville Andrew Jackson (26-3), 3 p.m. Saturday

How they got here: Gibbs d. Bradenton Bayshore 75-48, d. Sarasota Booker 85-48, d. Fort Myers Gateway 71-49, d. North Broward Prep 58-55 (3 OT). Andrew Jackson d. Jacksonville Bolles 62-47, d. Jacksonville Ribault 56-46, d. Jacksonville Raines 63-42, d. The Villages 47-43.

Stat Leaders
CategoryGibbsAndrew Jackson
Points per gameJacob Daniels, 18.3Ronald Durham, 12.6
Rebounds per gameIsaiah Medina, 7.0Ronald Durham, 5.2
Assists per gameJacob Daniels, 4.7Ronald Durham, 2.3
Steals per gameJacob Daniels, 2.4Ronald Durhm, 1.9
Blocks per gameBobby Crawford, 2.2Taishawn Thomas, 0.5


Entering this week, Gibbs had already set some impressive school records. This was the first time the Gladiators had made three straight state semifinal appearances. And Gibbs coach Larry Murphy tied the legendary Freddie Dyles for the most final four trips in school history with five. On Thursday, the Gladiators set another mark, outlasting North Broward Prep to win 58-55 in triple overtime in the 4A semifinals and advance to the title game for the time since 1969. Now, Gibbs will attempt to win its fifth overall title and third in the Florida High School Athletic Association (the first two titles, in 1951 and ’66, were in the FIAA before integration). The Gladiators have a roster full of veterans who know what it is like to play on the state’s biggest stage in high school basketball. That experience played a key role in helping Gibbs erase a double-digit second half deficit to beat North Broward Prep in the semifinals. The next task for the Gladiators is to get past one of their biggest nemeses. Gibbs lost to Andrew Jackson in the state semifinals two seasons ago and in this year’s regular season in January. The loss this year came on the road in the MLK Shootout that Andrew Jackson hosted and was decided by four points (52-48). The Tigers, ranked first in the class and 10th overall in the state by MaxPreps, have won 21 straight games.