(M) Basketball

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Nathan Laing to Start Coaching Career
August 27, 2018
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ORLANDO (UCFKnights.com) – Former UCF men's basketball guard Nathan Laing is following in his father's footsteps. The son of Knights assistant coach Robbie Laing has been named an assistant coach for the Kentucky Wesleyan College men's basketball team.

Laing, who came to UCF prior to the historic 2016-17 season to be a graduate assistant and help on the coaching staff, was thrusted into action when the Knights were down in numbers due to transfers and injuries.

Having played sparingly at Jacksonville State due to injuries of his own, Laing had eligibility remaining and was ready to serve his role in practice and as the consummate teammate on the bench.

When starting point guard B.J. Taylor went down with an injury early in the season, Laing's number was called. He did more than just fill in. Laing started five games during the span, leading UCF to five straight wins, including league victories over Tulane, ECU and Temple.

"We're so proud of Nate and very excited for him to begin his career in collegiate basketball coaching," UCF head coach Johnny Dawkins said. "He has a great mind for the game and I have no doubt he will be successful every step of the way. We're extremely grateful for the countless hours Nate put into this program in his two seasons with the Knights."

Last season, as a senior, Laing continued to contribute to the Knights' success on the court and in the locker room. He was another coach on the team, which makes this next move an obvious one for Laing.

“I want to send a special thank you to Coach Dawkins and UCF for helping me on my journey as a player, aspiring coach and person,” Laing said. “During my two years at UCF I fulfilled many life-long dreams. I was forced to grow and mature, and I learned how to be a professional. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience than my time at UCF.”

Laing was a member of UCF's first team in program history to win a game in the NIT, advancing to the semifinals in New York City in 2017, and leading the nation in field goal percentage defense, holding opponents to just 36.5 percent from the floor. He totaled 25 points, 24 assists, six steals and 26 rebounds as a junior that season.

"Nate's enthusiasm behind (our) vision is what stood out," Kentucky Wesleyan head coach Drew Cooper said. "His Dad is an extremely respected name in the business so if bloodlines have anything to do with it, Nate's future in coaching is very bright. I very much respect that Nate wanted to come to Kentucky and make a name for himself by making an impact as a recruiter, scouter and in every other facet of our program.  The same edge that made him a successful player, Nate has as a coach and we are thrilled to have him."

In 2016, Laing earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Management with a concentration in Human Resource Management from Jacksonville State. In 2018 he completed a Master of Career and Technical Education degree at UCF.

Fans excited for the upcoming 2018-19 UCF men's basketball season can purchase tickets today by calling (407) 823-1000 or online here: https://ucfknights.co/mbb1819tix.

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