Despite the graduation of Keith Clanton there’s optimism surrounding the UCF basketball program, with head coach Donnie Jones welcoming back just about every other key contributor from a team that managed to win 20 games despite being banned from postseason play.
Guard Isaiah Sykes (16.0 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 4.5 apg) was arguably the most versatile player in Conference USA, and his versatility will remain a factor despite the Knights’ move to the American Athletic Conference.
Joining Sykes on campus are key contributors such as guard Calvin Newell and forwards Tristan Spurlock and Kasey Wilson.
UCF is also one step closer to completing its non-conference schedule, as it was reported by the Orlando Sentinel that UCF will host Florida State on November 13. Paul Tenorio of the Sentinel noted in the story that this will not be UCF’s home opener. That contest has yet to be scheduled.
Leonard Hamilton’s squad, like UCF, has to account for the loss of a key senior (guard Michael Snaer) but a team that struggled due to inexperience is now a year older and will also take a trip to Greece next month.
Florida State adds freshman guard Xavier Rathan-Mayes, who played for Canada in the Under-19 World Championships earlier this month, to the mix as well.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.