Game Notes - 04 - Jacksonville Classic - South Dakota StGame Notes - 04 - Jacksonville Classic - South Dakota St

Men's Hoops Set for Jacksonville Classic

by Ken Landis

ORLANDO - The UCF men's basketball team is set to head north for its final trip away from home in non-conference play, taking part in the Jacksonville Classic, which is hosted by Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida. UCF matches up with South Dakota State in the first round of the tournament on Sunday and will face either Charlotte or George Mason on Monday, depending on the result of both games.

Semifinal Date: Sunday, Nov. 19, 2023, vs. South Dakota State
Time: 8 p.m. ET
Location: Flagler Gymnasium; St. Augustine, Fla.
Stream: PassThaBall Live ($)
Radio: FM 96.9/AM 740 The Game
Talent: Marc Daniels
Live Stats: click here

Day Two: Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, vs. Charlotte or George Mason
Time: Consolation Game, 6 p.m., Championship Game 8:30 p.m.
Location: Flagler Gymnasium; St. Augustine, Fla.
Stream: PassThaBall Live ($)
Radio: FM 96.9/AM 740 The Game
Talent: Jeff Sharon
Live Stats: click here


  • Junior guard Jaylin Sellers is making quite an impression on Knight Nation to begin the season, scoring 23 points in the opener, earning a 22-point, 11-rebound double-double at Miami and scoring 15 points against Cal St. Fullerton, adding five rebounds and five assists. He is the team leader in points and rebounds and tied for the team lead in assists. Sellers became the first UCF player to lead the team in scoring in his first three performances with the Knights in the Johnny Dawkins era (since 2016-17). His 60 points through his first three games mark the most during a three-game stretch in his career and the most by a Knight in his first three contests of a season since Brandon Mahan scored 55 points in 2021-22. Sellers dished out a career-high five assists and surpassed 250 career FGs-made on 11/16 against Cal St. Fullerton. UCF has had a player score 23 points in back-to-back season openers, as Taylor Hendricks posted 23 through two overtimes on 11/7/22. Hendricks also tallied a double-double in his second career game, just as Sellers did in his second game as a Knight. Hendricks scored 16 points and pulled in 12 rebounds against FSU on 11/11/22.
  • UCF has averaged forced 19 turnovers per game through its first three contests, a mark that is ranked 17th best in the nation and second in the Big 12. The Knights also rank in the top 50 in steals, sitting 40th with 10 steals per game. The Black and Gold’s defense impressed on opening night, generating 24 turnovers and 16 steals. The turnovers were the most since forcing 24 turnovers at Memphis on 2/16/23. The 16 steals marked the first time the Knights recorded 16 steals since a bout at Cincinnati on 2/19/20. The Knights added 18 forced turnovers and 11 steals at Miami on 11/10/23. UCF’s defense held the Panthers to just four points during the final four minutes of the first half and the first four minutes of the second half in the opening night victory. The Knights held Cal St. Fullerton to 23.5% from the field, the lowest mark in nearly seven years and the lowest since Johnny Dawkins’ sixth game leading the Knights against Stetson on Nov. 30, 2016, where the Hatters shot 22.1 % (15-of-68). UCF’s defense held the Titans to just 18 points in the first half, the fewest by an opposing team since Tulsa mustered just 14 points in the first half on Feb. 26, 2023.
  • Ibrahima Diallo is currently averaging 3.0 blocks per game which stands as the top mark in the Big 12 and 7th nationally. Diallo swatted aside five shots against Cal St. Fullerton, leading the Knights. He also led UCF in rebounds with eight in that contest, adding eight points and a steal in the process. As a team, UCF is approaching a top-50 national ranking in blocks per game, currently sitting 57th with 5.0 per game.
  • Marchelus Avery, who arrived at UCF over the offseason from New Mexico State, had his NCAA transfer waiver approved on Nov. 15, making him eligible to play in the team’s Nov. 16 contest against Cal St. Fullerton. After sitting out for the team’s first two games, Avery made an instant impact, scoring nine points and collecting four rebounds and an assist in 14 minutes on the floor.
  • The Knights have earned two non-conference tournament titles under head coach Johnny Dawkins. Last season, UCF won the Baha Mar Hoops Bahamas Championship with a 60-56 overtime victory over Oklahoma State and a 57-50 win over Santa Clara. The Knights were winners of the Myrtle Beach Invitational during the 2018-19 campaign, beating Cal St. Fullerton,
    Saint Joseph’s and Western Kentucky.
  • Flagler’s court, dubbed Clark Family Court, is named after former UCF-great Bo Clark who played with the Knights from 1975-80. Clark still leads the Black and Gold in all-time points, scoring average, field goal attempts, field goal attempts and free throws made and is eighth in assists and 10th in steals. His number, 23, is retired high above Addition Financial Arena. UCF was a part of NCAA Division II during Clark’s playing days.


  • The Knights have faced the Jackrabbits four times in their history, with the last meeting coming in 2008 at the Cancun Challenge in Cancun, Mexico. The two sides faced each other for four consecutive years, all while South Dakota State was transitioning to the Division I level.
  • UCF has faced Charlotte once and George Mason twice, with the opposition winning all three. The Knights’ one meeting with Charlotte was back in 1974 while their last meeting with the Patriots was back in 1987. The Knights will link up with one of the two on Monday.


  • The Jacks are coming off a 91-68 setback at Kansas State on Monday. The Wildcats ran away with the win by shooting over 65% from the floor, and making 8 of 11 3-pointers, during the second half in Bramlage Coliseum. Kansas State's total 57.4% shooting clip and 56% mark from long range would have been the second highest mark by an SDSU opponent a season ago.
  • Charlie Easley led SDSU with 21 points in the defeat versus the Wildcats. His point total was the second highest of his career, while his six steals were a career best. Easley's steal total is tied for the second most by a Jackrabbit in a single game during SDSU's DI era. Easley's six steals paced a total of 12 SDSU recorded versus Kansas State. the double-digit steal output is the Jacks' first since 2021. Luke Appel made a career-high three 3-pointers.
  • William Kyle III and Zeke Mayo each registered double-doubles in SDSU's first win of the season, an 83-55 victory over Dakota Wesleyan on Nov. 8. Mayo had 28 points along with 10 rebounds for his fifth career double-double. Kyle III had 17 points and snagged a career-high 13 rebounds. The pair of Jackrabbits were the first set of SDSU teammates to achieve the feat in the same game in almost two years to the date. Douglas Wilson and Baylor Schierman had double-doubles in a Nov. 9, 2021 season-opening win over Bradley at Frost Arena.


  • Charlotte Men's Basketball jumped out to an early 18-4 lead and weathered a second-half rally from visiting Utah Valley to earn a 62-45 victory over the Wolverines in non-conference action Wednesday evening in Halton Arena. The Niners never trailed but Utah Valley did chip away until the Charlotte lead dwindled to 41-39 with less than 10 minutes in the second half. Instead, the Niners responded with a game-sealing 10-0 run over the next four minutes. Charlotte had a 16-2 advantage in second chance points and outrebounded Utah Valley, 39-31.
  • Against Maine, sophomore guard Nik Graves scored a career-high 15 points and in the contest versus Liberty, redshirt sophomore guard Daylen Berry also notched a career-high with 10 points. Igor Milicic Jr. also achieved a career feat against the Flames, recording his second collegiate double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
  • It is a new era for Charlotte Athletics as the 49ers are now a member of the American Athletic Conference. Charlotte Basketball had previously spent the past 10 years as a member of Conference USA before joining The American on July 1, 2023.


  • George Mason is 3-0 to begin the campaign for the third time in five seasons. Most recently, the Patriots knocked off Cornell, 90-83, on Wednesday in a Jacksonville Classic campus game in Fairfax.
  • The team will play a brand of basketball dubbed “Patriot Pressure” this season, which emphasizes creating discomfort for opposing offenses. Through three games, Patriot Pressure has been on display, as the Patriots rank fifth nationally in 2pt FG defense (.369), 44th in FG defense (.315) and 61st in scoring defense (63.0 ppg allowed).
  • Graduate forward Amari Kelly has scored 14+ points in all three games this season. The UNCW transfer and Nov. 13 A-10 Weekly Honor Roll pick leads the team in blocks (1.7 bpg) and is second in scoring (16.0 ppg), rebounding (6.7 rpg) and FG percentage (.607).
  • The Patriots were picked 10th in the 15-team Atlantic 10 Preseason Poll, released on Oct. 17.
  • George Mason will aim to build on last season’s 20-win campaign. The Patriots went 11-7 in league play, matching program bests for A-10 wins (11) and A-10 Tournament seed (5).