Bulls, Knights Meet for First Time in Conference Play
For the first time in their 28 meetings in men’s basketball, USF and UCF will meet in conference play at 7 p.m. on Wednesday at CFE Arena in Orlando.
The Bulls enter the game with an 11-11 record overall, 2-7 in the American Athletic Conference following their 50-45 loss at No. 13 Cincinnati on Sunday. The Knights (9-10, 1-7 American) are also coming off a road loss to a ranked opponent as they fell to No. 12 Louisville 87-70 on Saturday.
USF has had a tough stretch of games to start conference play, with five of its first nine games coming against teams with a national ranking. Senior Victor Rudd leads the team with 14.5 points per game and is two points away from tying Reggie Kohn (1,024) for 16th in career scoring at USF.
Freshman forward Chris Perry is the reigning American Athletic Conference Rookie of the Week after averaging 15.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game last week. The Bartow native is averaging 9.6 points, to lead all freshmen in the conference, and adding 5.8 rebounds per game.
The Knights have lost six consecutive games, but are 8-4 at home this season. They are led by senior guard Isaiah Sykes who leads the team with 15.2 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. He is the only player in the conference to rank top 15 in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals and field goal percentage. Like USF, UCF has played the toughest part of its conference schedule early as the Knights have played three consecutive ranked teams.
USF leads the all-time series 20-7 including a 7-5 advantage in Orlando. In the last meeting, Victor Rudd had 13 points and 11 rebounds in a 65-56 win in Orlando last season.
» Cincinnati’s 50 points scored was the fewest allowed in a game this season by USF
» USF’s 45 points scored was a season low
» USF dominated the paint on Sunday at Cincinnati 28-18, but had just two points down low in the final nine minutes of play
» Cincinnati took the lead for good 42-41 with 5:23 to play
» Only 22 total fouls were called in Sunday’s game at Cincinnati, 13 against USF and nine against Cincinnati
» Chris Perry’s free throws: First 15 games… 23-of-53, 43%. Last seven games… 21-of-28, 75%
» Victor Rudd and Corey Allen Jr. are the only two players to start in every game this season for the Bulls
» In every game Victor Rudd has recorded at least 10 rebounds (4), he’s had at least 10 points for a double-double
» Musa Abdul-Aleem has not played in the past four games. He is 13-of-53 (24.5 percent) from three-point range, but 9-of-14 from two
» John Egbunu has recorded at least one blocked shot in all but five games this season (FGCU, Miss. State, vs. Cincy, vs. UL, at Memphis)
» John Egbunu’s 30 blocks on the season is the third most ever at USF among freshmen, first is 50
» John Egbunu’s 147 rebounds is the fourth most ever at USF among freshmen, first is 197
» Only six teams have attempted fewer three-pointers per game than USF (13.0)
» 60.3 percent of USF’s scoring has come via two-pointers, the 7th most in the NCAA according to KenPom
» 41.8 percent of USF’s scoring has come from three newcomers: Corey Allen Jr., John Egbunu and Chris Perry
» 22.0 percent of USF’s scoring has come from Victor Rudd
» USF is 0-8 when shooting under 40 percent from the field
» USF is 6-1 when leading at halftime, but 2-10 when trailing at the break
» USF is 7-0 when committing fewer turnovers than its opponent
» USF’s 542 free throws attempted ranks third in the conference
» Victor Rudd ranks 11th in scoring in the American (14.5) and 11th in rebounding.
» Corey Allen Jr. ranks 13th in assists (3.2), 12th in steals (1.5), fourth in minutes played (33.9)
» John Egbunu ranks 9th in the conference in rebounding (6.7), the most of any freshman, 10th in blocked shots (1.4), 8th in offensive rebounding (2.6)
» Chris Perry ranks 15th in the conference in rebounding (5.8)
The Bulls took a lead past the six minute mark, but a Justin Jackson jumper gave Cincinnati the lead for good to give the Bearcats their 14th consecutive win, 50-45. Chris Perry scored a team-high 13 points and Victor Rudd added 11 points.
When USF scored 50 points in the paint at Temple, it was the most cine recording 50 on March 9, 2010 in a 58-46 win over Depaul. When USF defeated SMU 78-71 on Jan. 28, it was the first time the Mustang’s had been outscored in the paint all season (38-28). The Bulls have outscored their opponents down low 734-571 on the season.
Through 22 games, the Bulls have recorded 85 dunks, an average of 3.9 per game. Freshman John Egbunu has led the rim-rattling with 32 dunks (page 6). Nine of Egbunu’s dunks have come from an alley-oop pass from junior point guard Anthony Collins. The only game in which USF did not recorded a dunk was on Jan. 4 against Houston.
SOURCE: USF Athletics