Press Release for Thursday, August 27, 2009

Men's basketball announces full 2009-2010 schedule

Jeff Wuerth

Assistant Director of Athletics Media Relations

(904) 620- 4027

University of North Florida men’s basketball coach Matthew Driscoll announced today the full 30-game schedule, including 13 home games, for the 2009-10 season.

  

The A-Sun schedule consists of a full 20-game round robin, with the Ospreys playing each of their 10 conference foes once at home and once on the road.

The 10 A-Sun home games include nine doubleheaders with the UNF women’s team. The only conference home game that is a stand-alone game is the SunTrust River City Rumble matchup with Jacksonville on Friday, Jan. 29, at 7 p.m. at UNF Arena.

  

The 10-game non-conference schedule consists of two home games, five road games and three neutral site games. Driscoll, beginning his first year at the Osprey helm, will test his new team early and often, with the non-conference schedule featuring road games against four BCS conference schools, including the season-opener at Notre Dame.

  

After Driscoll’s UNF coaching debut in a home exhibition game vs. Ave Maria (Ave Maria, Fla.) on Nov. 5, the Ospreys travel to Notre Dame, Ind. to face the Fighting Irish on Saturday, Nov. 14.

  

North Florida returns to Jacksonville for its home opener vs. Savannah State on Wednesday, Nov. 18, at 7 p.m. at UNF Arena.

The Ospreys then embark on a nine-game road trip which includes the first two Atlantic Sun Conference games of the year at Campbell (Nov. 27) and East Tennessee State (Nov. 29).

  

The other seven non-conference games on the nine-game road swing are at Illinois State (Nov. 21), Alabama (Dec. 2), Northwestern (Dec. 16), Marquette (Dec. 19), and at the South Mississippi Christmas Classic in Gulfport, Miss., against Canisius, New Orleans and Southern Miss.

UNF finally returns home on Wednesday, Dec. 30, to take on Palm Beach Atlantic at 7 p.m. at UNF Arena, before finishing off the schedule with the remaining 18 Atlantic Sun games.

  

The A-Sun home opener for the Ospreys is vs. Kennesaw State on Saturday, Jan. 2, at 7 p.m. at UNF Arena. That game is followed up by a home game two days later vs. Mercer on Monday, Jan. 4, at 7:45 p.m. The full schedule is below.

  

The regular season will conclude with the Atlantic Sun Championship on March 3-6 in Macon, Ga. The top eight teams qualify for the conference tournament.

“As excited as we are to play a challenging non-conference, we are equally looking forward to the A-Sun schedule,” said Driscoll. “Opening with one of the toughest road trips of the year and battling pre-season favorites throughout, we look forward to the games and understand that we need to compete for 40 minutes night-in and night-out. The A-sun is similar to all leagues in the sense that it has several schools consistently at the top. And as an up and coming team like UNF making a commitment to athletics provides us an opportunity to climb that ladder.”

  

The full schedule includes seven teams who participated in post-season play last season.

  

A season ticket for basketball is $120 and includes all men’s and women’s home games, a total of 28 games on 19 event dates, including nine Atlantic Sun Conference double headers. A special rate is available for UNF Alumni ($110) and UNF Faculty and Staff ($105). A Family 4-pack is also available for the season at $360. Select seating areas require an Osprey Club membership (per seat donation).

 

Single-game pricing is $10. Children 2-and-under and any current UNF student with a valid Osprey1 Card are admitted free. Student guest passes are $5 and limited to one per student.

  

For more information or to purchase basketball season tickets call 904-620-BIRD (2473) or email ospreytickets@unf.edu.

  

Driscoll welcomes a 15-player roster that includes six returning players, five freshmen, a junior college transfer, a Division I transfer and two preferred non-scholarship freshmen.

  

Returning for UNF are senior guards Eni Cuka and Germaine Sparkes, senior forward Stan Januska, junior forward Kyle Groothuis, and sophomore forwards Zack Riggins and Matt Sauey.

  

Entering as freshmen are guards Stephen O’Reilly (5-11, St. Croix US Virgin Islands, Country Day HS/South Kent Prep School (Ct.)) and William Wilson (5-10, Vero Beach, Fla., Sebastian River HS), forward/guards Andy Diaz (6-7, Miami, Fla., Hialeah-Miami Lakes HS) and Jerron Granberry (6-4, Miami, Fla., Coral Reef HS), and forward David Jeune (6-6, Okeechobee, Fla., Okeechobee HS).

  

The two freshmen preferred players are forwards Logan Bridges (6-7, Mt. Dora, Fla., Mt. Dora HS) and Etienne Effenberg (6-6, Neuwerk, Germany, Bishop Verot HS (Fla.)

  

Junior guard Brad Haugabrook (6-0, Newark, N.J.) is joining the Ospreys from Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Fla. He also spent one year at Northwood University in West Palm Beach, Fla. The other transfer is sophomore guard Parker Smith (6-3, Columbus, Ga.) who spent his freshman year at Tennessee State. Smith must sit out the 2009-10 season and will become eligible for the 2010-11 season.

  

The Ospreys went 8-22 last season and 6-14 in the Atlantic Sun Conference, finishing 10th out of 11 in league play.

The Ospreys return six of their top seven scorers to along with the nine newcomers. The six returners accounted for 70 percent of the team scoring last season, 63 percent of the rebounding and 54 percent of the assists.

  

Leading the way for UNF last season was Cuka who averaged a team-high 13.2 points. Januska averaged 8.9 points and led the team in rebounding at 4.4 an outing. He was also second on the team with 61 assists. Sauey, Groothuis, Riggins and Sparkes all averaged more than five points per game last year.

  

UNF just completed the final year of the four-year reclassification period to a full-fledged member of Division I athletics. The Ospreys began their transition from Division II athletics to Division I at the start of the 2005-06 season and beginning this year will b e eligible for all postseason play on the NCAA Division I level.

 

-UNF-