UCF Fastbreak - Sept. 3

Sept. 3, 2009

By Doug Richards

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - How good was UCF's recent recruiting class? According to Prep Stars Recruiters Handbook, the Knights' class is one of the top-50 groups in the country.

The publication listed three UCF freshmen in the top-175 nationally. Forward Keith Clanton (Orlando, Fla.) was ranked 79th, guard Marcus Jordan (Highland Park, Ill.) was 127th and guard Nik Garcia (Skokie, Ill.) was No. 175.

Head coach Kirk Speraw's recruiting class was the lone Conference USA group that was listed in the top-50 nationally. Programs were listed alphabetically.

Writer Brick Oettinger provided individual praise for Clanton and Jordan. Clanton averaged 18.2 points and 12.5 boards in leading Orlando Christian Prep to the Florida Class 1A state title as a senior. Jordan's Whitney Young High School squad also won the state crown. He averaged 10.0 points and 4.5 boards as the Dolphins claimed the Illinois Class 4A championship.

"Often facing bigger foes, he performed better and better over the course of last summer and continued his stellar play during the 2008-09 season," Oettinger said of Clanton. "He's especially effective around the basket, timing his leaps impeccably while snatching rebounds for put-backs and blocking shots. This high-major prospect is a prime catch for [UCF]."

Oettinger recognized Jordan for his defensive play, but also complimented his scoring ability.

"Marcus puts a lot of pressure on the defense by driving relentlessly at every opportunity, and if the defense backs off, he's fully capable of hitting three-pointers," he said. "On defense, his instincts, work ethic and physicality often reap dividends in steals."

Garcia averaged 22.0 points as a senior at Evanston Township High School. All four of UCF's signees garnered individual praise after their senior campaigns. Guard R.J. Scott (Slidell, La.) was listed as one of the top-150 prospects in the country by HoopScoop. In leading Salmen High School to the Louisiana Class 4A state title, Scott averaged 17.3 points.

UCF fans will have their first opportunity to see the newcomers on Nov. 13 when the Knights open the 2009-10 campaign at the UCF Arena versus Massachusetts. Season tickets are currently on sale and can be purchased by calling (407) UCF-1000 or by visiting UCFAthletics.com.

For the latest news on the Knights, log on to UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.

Notes: The Knights are scheduled to have their annual photo day this afternoon at the UCF Practice Facility... The squad will continue its individual workout sessions Thursday, with some groups going in the morning and the rest of the team participating after photo day.