The 2012-13 campaign was filled with expected adjustments for Calvin Newell. A transfer from Oklahoma, Newell became eligible seven contests into the season after not playing a competitive game for a full year. He used the latter part of UCF's non-league schedule to adjust to his new teammates and get acclimated to playing competitively again.
The 6-foot-1 Philadelphia native played both point and shooting guard and made 24 starts on the year. He averaged 11.1 points during the season and in Conference USA contests, upped his scoring average to 12.9 points per game, good for 18th in the league.
At times a year ago, he exhibited his prolific scoring ability. His 24-point outing vs. Rice and 17-point performance at Old Dominion showed that Newell is a special offensive talent. Now that Newell has adjusted to UCF, those types of outings could become more common during his senior campaign in 2013-14.
Dylan Karell saw limited minutes as a freshman, but the UCF coaching staff has high hopes for the big man from Miami. As a result, the offseason is pivotal for Karell and the Knights, who enter 2013-14 without the services of Keith Clanton, perhaps the best post player in program history.
Karell certainly will not be expected to replace Clanton, who averaged 14.8 points and 8.5 boards as a senior in 2012-13. Still, the sophomore should be in line for more minutes this upcoming season. As a rookie, Karell averaged 0.9 points and 0.8 boards in 4.4 minutes an outing. He appeared in 20 contests and made all eight of his shots from the floor.
In games, Karell rarely had the opportunity to show off the sneaky athleticism and on-point passing that he often displayed during practices. With the opportunity for more minutes this year and the potential for growth during the offseason, expect Karell to make some positive contributions and show off more than just a unique hairstyle.
On Wednesday, the UCF student-athletes and administrators taking part in Knights Without Borders in Panama concluded their work painting the houses as the SOS Aldeas Infantiles facilities in Colon.
Blog - May 8, 2013 - Gevenia Carter (Women's Basketball)
Hey everyone! This experience has been awesome thus far! I truly believe, regardless of me as a person coming to Panama, I have definitely changed. Who knew three days could do so much for one person? Not me. To start the day off in the Palace (OG Palace as Sebastian would say) we had an awesome breakfast created by our host who are Colombians. Their hospitality is so genuine and I truly admire how they've been so welcoming to us. First I must say that the coffee is definitely to die for! There seriously is absolutely no way there is any coffee better!
We then went into Colon and did a total of five houses today. We know that today would be a very hectic and busy day. After today we wouldn't be able to go back there and finish the houses. We worked so hard today and succeeded in finishing painting all the houses. It was tremendously amazing to see the glow on the faces of the kids and their aunts at the SOS Orphanage. Seeing them glow really touched me in a way nothing ever has. I gained friends with the students at a local university and it feels great to know I may have a friend in someplace so far away. It's an amazing feeling to know I'm networking and making friends out of my own comfort zone.
Leaving the SOS Orphanage we had an ending program. The kids and aunts created a program to thank us for our gratitude and everything we've done for them. It was something truly unforgettable! I feel blessed to be able to get a great opportunity to experience this. Thank you Lord for this chance.
This day was eventful. Ending the day we went to a local small mall that has several different places to eat. The shopping center was perfect for us to just sit back and relax after a long day of hard work. Now we are working and preparing for tomorrow's events.
Blog - May 8, 2013 - Jenna Doerfler (Women's Tennis)
My thoughts on the day: WE DID IT!! We worked hard and grinded it out in the heat to finish painting all 6 of the children's houses today! It was hard work but we worked together as one team and we completed it all and it looks absolutely beautiful for then.
To see how the houses looked before, and to see the difference we made to them in only three days was incredible. Yes, it was hard work and long hours of the day doing it, but knowing that we were making such a wonderful difference for these amazing kids and the Moms and Aunts of the homes, made the work that much more worth it. When I saw the kids running around outside or coming up to me asking to help me paint, I can't explain the feeling of joy and fulfillment I felt in what I was doing for them.
Each child is so special, regardless of their health issues, and each child is filled with happiness. That is another thing over the course of these three days I have already seen and loved... the fact that these children and adults have close to nothing; are living without air conditioning, without hot water and a lot of things that we take for granted, and are yet some of the happiest people I have ever met. They are filled with joy, they treat each other with respect, and they all have such a love for life. It has really made me appreciate even more what I have in my life and all I want to do is be there for these amazing kids and make an impact on their lives. I know that our team did that these past few days and painting and working in their houses was the least we can do.
After we finished painting the houses, the kids has a special thank you ceremony for us filled with choreographed dancing, singing, the reading of poems, and so many personal thanks. The performances made and practiced by the kids were amazing! They had fully choreographed several songs for us and had memorized poems to read us. As just one way to show our thanks to them, we put together beautiful care packages for the Moms of each house to share with the children and also use on a daily basis of tasks.
We spent so much time after this hugging and talking with the kids before we left. No one wanted to say goodbye. It was definitely an emotional time, as this was the last time we were going to see this particular group during our time here. We built ever lasting relationships and made such great memories through our experiences here the past few days. I will never forget the feeling of warm hugs from the children and never forget the beautiful smiles they all had every time I looked their way. I think it's a great reminder for all of us... Love one another and always find a reason to be happy and smile. I know I will.