Knights Tabbed Sixth in C-USA Preseason Poll

Oct. 11, 2007

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (www.ucfathletics.com) - The UCF men's basketball team has been selected to finish sixth in the 2007-08 Conference USA Preseason Poll, the league office announced at its media day at the FedEx Forum on Thursday. Head coach Kirk Speraw's team is entering its third campaign in the league and will make its debut at the 10,000-seat new UCF Arena this season.

A year ago, the Knights went 22-9 and 11-5 to finish second in C-USA. UCF was tabbed to finish seventh in the preseason poll in 2006-07. As a result of his team's second-place showing in the conference standings, Speraw was selected as the C-USA Coach of the Year.

UCF returns nine letterwinners and three starters from last year. UCF features a pair of all-conference candidates - senior guard Mike O'Donnell (Largo, Fla./Largo) and junior guard/forward Jermaine Taylor (Tavares, Fla./Tavares). Senior guard Dave Noel (Boynton Beach, Fla./Boynton Beach) is a candidate for the league's all-defensive squad.

The Knights open the regular season on Nov. 11, hosting Nevada in the inaugural game at the new arena. UCF will play 16 regular-season contests at the state-of-the-art facility. The home slate includes non-league games against Ole Miss (Dec. 8) and Connecticut (Dec. 28).

In November, UCF will not have to travel far to compete in one of the country's top tournaments. The Knights will play three games at the Old Spice Classic at Disney's Wide World of Sports, including a Thanksgiving contest versus Villanova. The game against the Wildcats will be televised live nationally on ESPN2.

Memphis, expected to be one of the top teams in the country, was the preseason pick to win the C-USA title. Houston and UAB tied for second in the poll, followed by Southern Miss and Tulsa.

The league's 12 head coaches predicted the order of finish for the poll. UCF will play 16 C-USA contests this season. The team opens its conference schedule at Southern Miss on Jan. 8 and makes its home C-USA debut on Jan. 12 against Tulsa.

The Knights' first practice of the year is slated for Friday evening. Season tickets are currently available by calling 407-UCF-1000. One lucky season ticket holder for will get to drive home from the new UCF Arena in a brand new Mazda CX-9, courtesy of Classic Mazda, the presenting sponsor of this year's season ticket drive. UCF fans who purchase two season tickets be entered into a drawing to win the Mazda CX-9.

For the latest news and information on the Knights, tickets or apparel, log on to www.ucfathletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. Also check out www.ucfphotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.

2007-08 C-USA Preseason Poll
1. Memphis
2t. Houston
2t. UAB
4. Southern Miss
5. Tulsa
6. UCF
7. Tulane
9. Marshall
10. SMU
11. Rice
12. East Carolina

2007-08 Preseason All-Conference Team

Paul Delaney III, UAB, G, 6-2, Sr., Decatur, Ga.
Chris Douglas-Roberts, Memphis, G, 6-6, Jr., Detroit, Mich.
Joey Dorsey, Memphis, F, 6-9, Sr., Baltimore, Md.
Robert McKiver, Houston, G, 6-3, Sr., New Haven, Conn.
Jeremy Wise, Southern Miss, G, 6-2, So., Jackson, Miss.