15 December 2009

Better Know An Opponent: University of North Florida

The University of North Florida ("UNF") Ospreys, in their first full-fledged Division 1 season, descend upon the Welsh this Wednesday December 16 at 8pm Central. The game will be broadcast to a national television audience on the U (check with your local cable or satellite provider for channel number). This will be just the second nationally televised game in UNF history.

UNF Quick Facts:
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Nickname: Ospreys

Coach: Matthew Driscoll (first year -- previously the top assistant at Baylor for 6 years)
Team Colors: Navy Blue & Gray
Conference: Atlantic Sun (fka Trans America Athletic Conference, founded in 1978)
Student Population: 16.5K

UNF was founded in 1969 and opened its doors in 1972. Today UNF is a member of the State University System of Florida and is considered one of the best bangs for your buck for colleges by Princeton Review (~$4k-$4.5k tuition this year). It's most noted academic program is Jazz Studies (maybe visiting fans will want to check out the Green Mill).

UNF was predicted to finish 9th in the Atlantic Sun by the coaches and 11th by the media (of 11).

Projected Starting Five:

G Haugabrook 6'0" 185 #1 Jr.
G Januska 6'6" 210 #32 Sr.
G Granberry 6'4" 215 #15 Fr.
F Jeune 6'6" 210 #24 Fr.
F Diaz 6'7" 220 #21 Fr.

Like Tennessee State, the starting five doesn't mean much to the Ospreys. No one is averaging more than 25 mins per game, and there are 10 players who play at least 12 minutes per game. Will they employ the line shift like Tenn St? Januska is the only player of note. He averages 11.2 PPG, shoots over 50% from distance (!!!!), and is the ONLY Osprey who has more assists than turnovers (yikes!!!!).

The good news for the Ospreys? UNF did manage to play Alabama tough for a half (the same 'Bama squad that led Purdue big into the second half earlier this week). The bad news? Alabama won by 22. The good news? UNF is healthy. The bad news? Healthy<>Good. The good news? The Ospreys nearly defeated Northwestern on Nov 15, 2006 dropping a riveting battled 39-40. The bad news? This ain't the same Northwestern.

What to expect? NU is (7-1) and in the "Others Receiving Votes" section of the AP and Coaches polls. UNF is (1-5) (0-2) and is coming off two weeks rest. CUPCAKE CITY BABYYYYYYYYYY!