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Nebraska Basketball: Central Florida Preview

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Huskers head to Orlando to take on the undefeated UCF Knights in the Advocare Invitational

NCAA Basketball: Houston at Central Florida Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Date: Thursday, November 24th

Time: 5:00pm CST

Mascot: Knights

Coach: Johnny Dawkins (2nd season)

2016-17 Record: 24-12 (11-7 American Athletic Conference)

2017-18 Record: 3-0

Last Season: The 2016-17 season was fairly good to the Knights. They ended up 4th in the conference and were defeated in the AAC conference tournament to eventual champion SMU.

Their season was rewarded with a #4 seed in the NIT and ended in similar fashion as their AAC tournament. During their run they defeated Colorado, Illnois State, and Illinois before being defeated by eventual champion TCU in the semifinal game. All in all a nice season for a team with a first year head coach and three straight losing seasons.

This Season: The Knights come into the 2017-18 season with a majority of last years squad returning which includes 3 returning starters. They are big and strong and could very well give Cincinnati and Wichita State a run for the top spot in the league.

This a very large team. Many of their top players are forwards and that is including the tallest current basketball player in the NCAA. Tacko Fall is a 7’6” 295lbs behemoth from Senegal. The forward is huge and will plant himself in the pant and make life miserable for opponents. Tacko missed the first two games of the year with a hip injury but came back strong in the win over William & Mary. Against the Tribe he had 13 points and pulled down 12 rebounds. He was the AAC defensive player of the year in 2016-17.

Next to Tako 6’9” senior A.J. Davis. The Forward is currently leading the team with 13.3 ppg, 12.0 rpg, and 2.3 apg and picked up a lot of the slack with the loss of Tacko while he was out. However he did not see any decrease once Fall came back into the lineup.

The top guard for the Knights is Dayton Griffin. The 6’4” guard is averaging 12.7 ppg and 4.3 rpg. A quick player who can make you pay if you’re playing him too soft.

One player from last years team that they are currently with out is B.J. Taylor. The 6’2” guard played in the first game of the year against Mercer but has missed the past two with a fractured bone in his foot. As of now, it does not look like he will be playing against the Huskers.

Prediction: Nebraska is by far the most talented team the Knights have come up against this season. The 68-65 win over Gardner-Webb was probably the closest challenge they’ve had. On the flip side, UCF is by far the largest team Nebraska has gone up against all year. If Nebraska doesn’t come out strong and score early then it could be a early night for the team. But, if Nebraska scores like it did against North Dakota then the Huskers could see a win against a team that will most likely vie for the top of the AAC.