Knights Look to Sweep Tigers in Memphis

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ORLANDO – Fresh off a win in the War on I-4, the UCF men's basketball team (13-7, 5-4 AAC) faces a quick turnaround as the Knights head to Memphis (11-8, 5-4 AAC) for another American Athletic Conference contest just two days after defeating South Florida. The Knights will take on the Tigers Saturday, Feb. 5 at 8:00 p.m. EST at FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tennessee.

The game, which will be streamed live on ESPN2, marks the second of two regular season matchups this season between the Knights and the Tigers, as the black and gold secured the 74-64 win in round one on Jan. 12.
The Knights also battled it out with Memphis in the quarterfinals of the 2020-21 AAC Championship before UCF's season came to a close following a 70-62 loss. The Tigers hold the all-time series lead over UCF at 27-7 and the Knights are just 1-18 all-time in Memphis.

After coming into the season with high expectations and being ranked as high as 12 in the AP Top 25 Poll, the Tigers have since fallen out of the rankings after dropping five of their first 11 games this season, including five of six from Nov. 26 – Dec. 10.
But the Tigers have found their stride as of late, picking up wins over Tulsa (Jan. 23) and ECU (Jan. 27) before their scheduled game against Cincinnati was postponed due to a winter storm sweeping across the country.
With 14-year NBA veteran and 4-time All-Star Penny Hardaway at the helm since the start of the 2018-19 season, the Tigers have enjoyed a 74-40 record and an NIT national championship in 2020-21.

Memphis freshmen Emoni Bates and Jalen Duren pace the Tigers with 10.7 and 10.4 points per game, respectively. Duren was the AAC Preseason Rookie of the Year while Bates was named to the Preseason All-AAC Second Team.
Duren leads the conference with 38 total blocks in 15 games.

Game Information
Date: Saturday, Feb. 5
Time: 8 p.m. EST
Radio: FM 96.9 The Game


  • Johnny Dawkins picked up career win No. 100 in the Knights' win over N.C. A&T on Dec. 11, becoming just the third coach in UCF history to reach the milestone.
  • Dawkins is 106-67 since starting with the Knights in 2016, a win percentage of .615, the second best of any UCF coach (Torchy Clark, .754 from 1969-83).
  • He has the third most wins over any UCF coach, trailing only Clark's 274 and Kirk Speraw's 247 from 1993-2010.
  • Dawkins is the fastest coach to reach 100 wins in program history in the Division I era, needing only 162 games to do so.
  • Dawkins had his squad off to a 4-0 start to begin the 2021-22 season, tying his 2017-18 mark for his best start to a season at UCF.
  • Dawkins has led UCF to its first NIT Final Four (2017), first at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament (2019) and first NCAA Tournament win (2019).
  • Prior to Dawkins' arrival at UCF, the program had won three games against ranked opponents from 1984-2016. Since Dawkins has taken over, the Knights have won five games against ranked opponents.
  • UCF had never won two games against ranked teams in a single season, and the Knights did it in a span of five days, taking down No. 6 Houston and No. 19 Cincinnati late in the 2018-19 season.
  • UCF is now 8-50 all-time against ranked opponents, but 5-17 against ranked teams under Dawkins.


  • The UCF men's basketball team defended its home court in a big way on Jan. 12 against visiting Memphis, taking down the Tigers 74-64 to move to 10-4, 2-2 on the season.
  • In the process, UCF wiped out a handful of streaks as Memphis had defeated the Knights five straight times--and the Tigers had won three straight games (and four of five) at the time.
  • Meanwhile, UCF had lost two in a row after winning five straight. All that came to an end after a superior early shooting exhibition by UCF paved the way in the victory over Memphis despite multiple late runs by the Tigers.
  • Junior guard Darin Green Jr. notched 20 points (eight of 14 from the field). His four three-point goals keynoted a 45.8% shooting effort by the home team (11 of 28 on long-distance attempts).
  • Junior C.J. Walker and freshman Darius Johnson added 12 points each--and Walker and senior Cheikh Mbacke Diong had seven rebounds apiece.
  • Fifth-year guard Darius Perry had 11 points and five assists for UCF, as six different Knights connected for at least one three-pointer.
  • The Tigers missed 12 of 18 free throws, turned the ball over 19 times and shot only 39.7%.
  • The win marked the Knights' first over Memphis since Feb. 16, 2019 (W, 79-72), and moved the all-time series to 27-7 in favor of the Tigers.

GREEN IS GOOD                                                     

  • Junior Darin Green Jr. has made a big leap forward in year three with the Knights as he leads the team with 13.5 points per game to open the season.
  • Green has led the team in points in 10 out of 20 games, with double-digit points in all but seven games.
  • He was named to the American Athletic Conference honor roll on 11/15 and 12/13.
  • His 39.5 percent mark on threes is second in the AAC and he is tied for first in the conference with 2.74 threes per game.
  • He has posted four games with five made threes (11/27 vs Oklahoma, 11/13 at Miami, 12/30 vs Michigan and 02/03 vs South Florida).
  • Green led all Knights with 20 points (8-of-14 shooting and 4-of-9 from three) and added four rebounds to help UCF take down Memhis, 74-64, on Jan. 12
  • Against Michigan, Green was 7-of-9 on threes and led the team with 27 points.
  • He also posted a team-high 23-point effort in UCF's 95-89 win at Miami on Nov. 13.
  • Green was solid in year two for the Knights during the 2020-21 season, averaging 11.3 points per game, which ranked 17th in the conference and third on the team.
  • The Charlotte, North Carolina product also led the Knights with 53 made 3-pointers in 2020-21 and ranked seventh in the league with 2.3 made threes per game. 
  • Green was also monumental in UCF's 86-74 win over then 15th-rated Florida State last season as he knocked down six 3-pointers and scored a season-high 20 points against the Seminoles.
  • In his freshman season in 2020-21, Green set a UCF freshman record with 68 made 3-pointers
  • He led The American with 41.7 percent shooting from 3-point range and 2.3 threes made per game.


  • UCF was riding high on a five-game winning streak after defeating Bethune-Cookman (12/5), North Carolina A&T (12/11), Temple (12/15), North Alabama (12/22) and Michigan (12/30) before their streak came to an end with a loss at SMU on Jan. 2.
  • Over that stretch, the Knights outscored opponents 389-296 while shooting 49.6 percent from the field and 37.7 percent from three-point range.
  • The Knights held a +7.2 rebounding margin over opponents during their winning streak.
  • Meanwhile, UCF was holding opponents to a 36.9 field goal percentage, including 27.6 percent from deep.
  • Junior Darin Green Jr. led the team over the five-game streak with 17.0 points per game and was shooting 48.7 percent from three (19-of-39).
  • Darius Perry was dishing the ball out with solid efficiency as he led the Knights with 29 assists over that stretch (5.8 per game).

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