Undefeated Knights to Host B-CU Saturday

Dec. 10, 2010

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By Doug Richards

Complete Release in PDF Format

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Off to one of the best starts in program history, the UCF men's basketball team will return to the hardwood Saturday when the Knights host Bethune-Cookman at 5 p.m. at the UCF Arena. The Knights, who are receiving votes in both national polls, are 7-0 in 2010-11 under new head coach Donnie Jones.

The start is the best for the Knights since 1979-80 when Torchy Clark's team opened the campaign with 15-consecutive victories. On Monday, the Knights received 28 votes in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll, and four votes in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.

UCF has already defeated opponents from the BIG EAST (USF) and SEC (No. 16 Florida) this year. Following last week's 57-54 win over the Gators at the Amway Center in downtown Orlando, UCF received plenty of national attention. Dick Vitale placed the Knights at No. 25 in his weekly top-25 on ESPN.com and selected Jones as his national coach of the week. FoxSports.com national college basketball writer Jeff Goodman called the Knights his "Mid-Major Team of the Week."

Bethune-Cookman enters the game at 4-4 this season. C.J. Reed is averaging a team-high 21.1 points.

Saturday will serve as "Bowl Bound Night" as football head coach George O'Leary and members of his team will be honored at the UCF Arena. Prior to the game, team captains Derrick Hallman, Bruce Miller, Jah Reid and David Williams will be available to autograph complimentary UCF-AutoZone Liberty Bowl commemorative posters which will be distributed inside the arena lobby. At halftime, the football team will be recognized on the court.

Tickets for the game are available at Ticketmaster.com, or by visiting UCFAthletics.com. Season ticket and mini-plan packages are available by calling (407) UCF-1000. The UCF Arena box office will be open prior to the game Saturday. UCF students are admitted free to all home games with a valid school ID.

The contest will be televised live in central Florida on Bright House Sports Network with David Baumann and former UCF standout guard Mike O'Donnell on the call. CSS will air the game throughout the southeast on a tape-delayed basis starting at 5:30 p.m.

In Orlando, the game will air on the UCF Sports Network from IMG College and its flagship station, 740 The Game. Marc Daniels will provide play-by-play from courtside. Live video will be available on the All-Access section of UCFAthletics.com.

Series Record UCF, 12-7
Last Meeting UCF 63, Bethune-Cookman 50 (Dec. 12, 2009 - UCF Arena)

? UCF has won the last five matchups against the Wildcats, including a 63-50 victory on Dec. 12, 2009, at the UCF Arena
? A.J. Tyler led the Knights with 18 points in last year's win, and Isaac Sosa (13), A.J. Rompza (12) and P.J. Gaynor (10) also finished with double-digits in scoring in the win
? The Knights did most of their damage at the line, shooting 18-of-21 (85.7 percent) at the charity stripe
? C.J. Reed paced the Wildcats with 10 points
? UCF is already 4-0 against in-state programs in 2010-11, posting wins over West Florida, USF, Stetson and Florida

Last Time Out
? Keith Clanton nearly recorded a triple-double (16 points, 15 rebounds, eight blocked shots) as the Knights rolled to a 74-49 victory over visiting Southeastern Louisiana Saturday
? The Knights, who had four players finish with double-figures in scoring, shot 53.4 percent overall

Making it Look Easy
? The Knights rank second in the country, behind Kansas (28.3), in victory margin at +27.4
? UCF has won five of its seven games by at least 25 points
? In 2009-10, UCF won by over 20 points just once, a 24-point victory over visiting Liberty

On the Defensive
? UCF boasts one of the nation's top defenses as the Knights rank third in the country in scoring defense, limiting opponents to just 52.6 points per game
? The Knights are also fourth nationally in field-goal percentage defense (34.3)

The Best Offense
? UCF also ranks among the national leaders in several offensive statistical categories
? The team is 29th in scoring offense at 80.0 points per game and fourth in field-goal percentage (52.5)

Shut it Down
? Last season, opponents averaged 68.2 points per game against the Knights
? This year, only one of the team's foes has scored over 60 points (West Florida, 61)

Crowded House
? Attendance is up this season at the UCF Arena as the Knights are averaging 5,961 fans through five home games
? In 2009-10, UCF set a single-season record by averaging 5,411 fans
? So far this season, three of the top-10 crowds in school history have already been recorded

In the Lead
? UCF has not trailed entering halftime this season
? The Knights have mostly taken big advantages into intermission as they are averaging a 12-point lead at the break

Block Buster
? UCF is already on pace to establish a new school single-season blocked shots record as the Knights have totaled 47 swats in seven games
? The UCF record of 143 was achieved in 2004-05
? UCF totaled 95 blocks in 2009-10

Going Deep
? UCF's bench has outscored its opponents reserves in all seven games this season
? Most recently, the squad's bench accounted for 27 points in last Saturday's win over Southeastern Louisiana
? UCF's reserves are averaging 32.7 points on the season
? Last year, the Knights' bench averaged 21.5 points

? No UCF player who is averaging over 10.0 minutes per game is shooting below 44.4 percent from the field
? In fact, four of UCF's current starters - Keith Clanton (62.7), Dwight McCombs (61.5), Marcus Jordan (53.1) and David Diakite (50.0) - are shooting 50.0 percent or better overall

Seeing Double
? UCF's sensational sophomores - Keith Clanton and Marcus Jordan - have each scored in double-figures in all seven of the team's games
? Clanton did not have more than three-straight double-digit scoring contests a year ago, and Jordan did not score at least 10 points in more than two-straight games

A One Man Block Party
? Keith Clanton entered last Saturday's game with four blocked shots on the year
? The sophomore forward doubled that against Southeastern Louisiana a week ago as he matched a UCF single-game record with eight swats
? Thanks to the blockfest against the Lions, Clanton moved from outside the top 10 to ninth on the UCF career blocks register with 57 (Bucky Hodge is eighth with 62 from 1997-99)

Getting to the Glass
? In addition to scoring 15.6 points per game, Keith Clanton is averaging a team-high 9.3 rebounds, which ranks third in Conference USA
? Clanton, who averaged a team-high 6.8 rebounds last year, has already grabbed at least 10 boards in a game on three occasions in 2010-11

Double Dips
? Keith Clanton recorded four double-doubles as a freshman last year
? Through only seven games this season, the Orlando native has already posted three double-doubles
? The sophomore ranks fifth among all Conference USA players with seven career double-doubles

Handle with Care
? A.J. Rompza has been careful with the ball as the point guard has dished out 35 assists this season while committing only 11 turnovers
? Rompza's 3.18 assist-turnover ratio ranks 22nd in the nation and second in Conference USA

Up Next
? UCF will face Louisiana-Lafayette Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the UCF Arena
? The Ragin' Cajuns have an 8-1 edge in the all-time series, but the Knights picked up a 65-52 victory in the last meeting on Dec. 11, 2007, in Orlando