Calvin Newell's breakout offensive performance is coming soon, but in the meantime, the junior transfer is clearly committed to excelling on the defensive end. Last night during the second half of UCF's contest with USF, Newell guarded talented point guard Anthony Collins from end to end.
Collins, a preseason All-BIG EAST pick, struggled to get the ball with Newell hounding him. Newell's defensive pressure allowed the Knights to use a 19-6 run to get back into the game late in the second half. Thanks to a timely 3-pointer from Toarlyn Fitzpatrick and a late spurt of their own, the Bulls posted a 65-56 win, but the play of Newell was encouraging for UCF head coach Donnie Jones.
"I thought he played with great toughness. I thought he played with great energy. That disrupted what they were trying to do. That was a big part of that spurt when we kept them from scoring. It all starts with the guy who is guarding the ball. It raises the level for the guys on the rest of the team," Jones said.
Newell is a talented scorer who is still adjusting to his new role with the team. After sitting out the last year following his transfer from Oklahoma, the Philadelphia native has started the last seven games at point guard. Newell is still getting comfortable with his new teammates offensively, but showed against USF that he is happy to play outstanding defense.