The UCF Knights will play the Connecticut Huskies at the Gampel Pavillion at 6 PM on ESPNU. Despite being 12-3, the Huskies are currently ranked 9th in the American Athletic Conference. With conference losses to Houston & SMU, the Huskies are at the bottom of their new conference. The Huskies look to get a win today over a UCF where UConn is clearly better. But, the Knights are no cakewalk. The Knights are 9-4, currently ranked 5th in the conference. UCF got blown up by Louisville, but they also edged out a victory at home versus Temple. The Knights have also beaten Miami earlier in non-conference play.
UCF’s best player in the 2013-2014 has Isaiah Sykes. The 6-6 senior guard is averaging 15 points per game and about 7 rebounds per game as well. Besides Sykes, the Knights have three other scorers who all average double-digit points per game. The Knights also feature one of the best three point shooters in College Basketball in Kasey Wilson. Wilson is hitting 53% of his shots from deep.
Going up against UCF, UConn has to have consistent play from guards Shabazz Napier & Ryan Boatright. Like
UConn, the Knights are not the best rebounding team. Because of that, UConn may have to outplay the Knights by their guard-play. Shabazz Napier will come up big for UConn, but it has yet to be seen if Ryan Boatright can come up big consistently as well.
After UCF, UConn has to go on the road to play Memphis and then come back to Storrs to play Louisville. Both are top 25 teams. With those two games looming, UConn’s matchup versus UCF could turn into a trap game. The Huskies are due for a big game with their recent slump. This could be the game they get back on their roll and make a run towards a becoming a top 25 team again.
Prediction: UConn 74, UCF 63
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