Florida used a hot streak from behind the 3-point arc and a late defensive stand to knock off No. 2 Auburn 63-62 Saturday. Auburn, the highest-ranked team to lose to Florida at home, had a final chance to win the game after almost erasing a late deficit, but Wendell Green Jr.'s attempted pass to Walker Kessler was knocked away.

The Gators led by eight points when Tyree Appleby hit a 3-pointer with just over two minutes remaining for a 61-53 advantage. But Auburn roared back, going on an 7-1 run to cut the lead to 62-60. That lead fell to one point after Colin Castleton made one of his two free throws on the next possession, only for K.D. Johnson to knock down both of his own attempts.

Johnson also set up Auburn's final attempt, getting a steal and calling timeout with 7.5 seconds left. But Green couldn't penetrate the Florida defense, leading to a late prayer of a pass that didn't have a real chance of getting to the Tigers' big man.

Auburn entered Saturday's action as the projected No. 2 overall seed by the NCAA Tournament selection committee, with chairman Tom Burnett noting on CBS that the gap between the top three No. 1 seeds was close.

"First I would tell you that Gonzaga and Auburn in the committee room are very close. Razor thin," Burnett said. "I would even offer of the discussions — an extended discussion between these two teams. They have different opportunities but are very close in the room. Likewise, I would tell you that Auburn and Arizona, that is also razor thin. Lots of discussion for those two for the No. 2 overall seed. Maybe a little more separation to Kansas in the No. 4 position, but certainly a high quality No. 1 seed line."

CBS Sports Bracketology Expert Jerry Palm said he will likely move Auburn to the No. 3 overall seed when he updates his projected bracket as Arizona will jump to the No. 2 overall seed.

"The Tigers now have two OT losses and a one-point defeat, all away from home," Palm said. "At least for now, Auburn will drop to No. 3 overall behind Arizona. There are still a lot of games to play today."

Before the game, Florida (17-10, 7-7 SEC) came in at No. 53 in the NET rankings, meaning the road loss would count as a Quadrant I defeat for the Tigers (24-3, 12-2). Arkansas comes to Gainesville, Florida, on Tuesday, with Auburn hosts Ole Miss on Wednesday.

The victory was a big one for the Gators in terms of the bracket as well. Florida was one of the "First 4 Out" at the beginning of the day, but beating a team projected to be a No. 1 seed is a quality victory for the Gators.

Auburn's final play goes bad

Auburn trailed by just one point and had the ball with 7.5 seconds remaining when it called timeout to set up its final look.

As so often happens in college games, there wouldn't be a final look. Florida hounded Wendell Green Jr. at the top of the key, costing the Auburn point guard valuable seconds. By the time he got the ball inside the 3-point line, his low-percentage shovel pass to Walker Kessler was tipped away by Florida's Phlandrous Fleming as time expired.

After the game, Auburn coach Bruce Pearl broke down what he wanted on the play.

"Wendell in the middle of the floor, Walker rolling to the rim, shooters spread out — if we complete that last play and Walker catches it and dunks it, then I look like a genius," Pearl said.

Weight of the crown getting heavy?

Since landing the No. 1 ranking for the first time in school history, Auburn has found a bit tougher sledding. The Tigers started the season 18-1 — the lone loss came against UConn in double-overtime on a neutral court — and earned the title of college basketball's top team after defeating Kentucky on Jan. 22. In the eight games since, Auburn is 6-2 with losses at Arkansas and Florida, but it also has two wins by a combined three points over Missouri and Georgia.

Jabari Smith has been lethal of late, scoring 31 points in the Tigers' win over Vanderbilt earlier this week, and he had 28 of Auburn's 62 on Saturday. But Pearl bemoaned the lack of support for the star freshman.

"We're best when everybody contributes, and we relied too much on Jabari tonight," Pearl said. "Not that it wasn't smart continuing to go to him because he was able to make plays. But we're best when everybody contributes. That wasn't the case tonight."

He also spoke about the challenges facing Auburn's offense moving forward.

"You know, as the season progresses, you've got to be able to make adjustments to what you're doing," Pearl said. "I don't think there was a lot of confusion. But there wasn't much execution. That was unfortunate ... If we don't execute in our half-court offense better, it'll just limit how far we can go."

Florida had a rare shooting performance

The Gators played well defensively, forcing 17 Auburn turnovers. But even with that output, the Gators were likely to head home with a loss after making just 9 of 27 (33.3%) of their shots inside the arc.

But that didn't matter as much because of what Florida did outside the arc. The Gators are among the nation's worst 3-point shooting teams — even after the showing against Auburn, Florida ranks 316th in 3-point field goal percentage — but they made 10 of 25 3-pointers, or 40%, to upset the Tigers. Tyree Appleby, who entered the game shooting 31.9% from 3 and making 1.6 3s per game, shot 5 of 10 from deep, including the shot to give Florida its biggest lead of the game (eight points) with 2:16 left.

The Gators needed every one of those points to pull off the win, and it would help their case if they could hit more outside shots to try and knock off either Arkansas or Kentucky, two of their final four regular-season opponents. 

The Gators' NCAA Tournament resume could hang in the balance.