North Florida Ospreys men's basketball

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North Florida Ospreys
2014–15 North Florida Ospreys men's basketball team
North Florida Ospreys athletic logo
University University of North Florida
Conference A-Sun
Location Jacksonville, Florida
Head coach Matthew Driscoll (6th year)
Arena UNF Arena
(Capacity: 5,800)
Nickname Ospreys
Colors

Blue and Gray

            
Uniforms
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Home jersey
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Team colours
Home
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Away jersey
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Team colours
Away
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Alternate jersey
Kit shorts whitesides.png
Team colours
Alternate
NCAA Tournament appearances
2015
Conference tournament champions
2015
Conference regular season champions
2015

The North Florida Ospreys represent the University of North Florida (UNF) in men's college basketball. The Ospreys compete in the Atlantic Sun Conference (A-Sun) in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). They play home games at UNF Arena on the school's campus in Jacksonville.

The program was founded in 1992 in the NAIA. They entered NCAA Division II the following season. The Ospreys transitioned into NCAA Division I from 2005 to 2009. Their current head coach is Matthew Driscoll.

History[edit]

The North Florida Ospreys men's basketball team played its first games in the 1992–1993 season, spending their first year as an National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Independent.[1] UNF initially had no basketball court, so the Ospreys' first three home games were played at Florida Community College at Jacksonville until UNF Arena was finished in 1993.[2] Their first coach was Rich Zvosec.[3][4] In the 1993–1994 season UNF transitioned into NCAA Division II, joining the Sunshine State Conference. In 1996 the Ospreys switched over to the Peach Belt Conference, also in Division II.[1][5] After six seasons, Zvosec was succeeded as head coach by former National Basketball Association (NBA) player Sidney Green.[3][6][7] In 1999, Matt Kilcullen became the team's third head coach.[8][9][10]

In 2005, UNF began its transition into NCAA Division I competition, joining the Atlantic Sun Conference (A-Sun).[1][5] The four-year transition period, 2005–2009, was difficult for the Ospreys, who compiled a record of 20–96, a substantially worse record than the Ospreys had faced in their previous six seasons under Coach Kilcullen. In 2009, new athletic director, Lee Moon, relieved Kilkullen of his position and replaced him with former Baylor University assistant coach Matthew Driscoll for the Ospreys' first year as full Division I members.[9][11] The Ospreys improved under Driscoll, who led them to their first conference tournament appearance in the 2009–2010 season. In the 2011 A-Sun Tournament the Ospreys upset Jacksonville and East Tennessee State to advance to the championship game, but were defeated 87–46 by Belmont.[12][13][14] The game was UNF's first to be nationally televised.[15]

In the 2014–15 season, the Ospreys made their first ever appearance in the NCAA Division I tournament by winning the Atlantic Sun Tournament for the first time. On December 6, 2014, they defeated the Purdue Boilermakers on the road, marking their first ever victory over a Big Ten Conference opponent.[16] They also won the Atlantic Sun regular season title for the first time and posted the best record in team history with 23 wins and 11 losses. In the NCAA Tournament they played the Robert Morris Colonials. The Colonials beat the Ospreys 77-81 in the first round in Dayton, Ohio.

Head coaches[edit]

Men's basketball head coaches Seasons
Rich Zvosec 1991–1997
Sidney Green 1997–1999
Matt Kilcullen 1999–2009
Matthew Driscoll 2009–present

Facilities[edit]

The Ospreys' home venue is UNF Arena. Also the home to the UNF women's basketball and volleyball teams, it opened in 1993 and has a capacity of 5,800.[17] The facility is slated to undergo upgrades and additions as part of UNF's Varsity Village program.[18][19]

Rivalries[edit]

North Florida's most notable rivalry is with crosstown opponents the Jacksonville University Dolphins.[20] The two universities contest the "River City Rumble", in which the school with the most wins annually over the other across all sports receives a trophy, the SunTrust Old Wooden Barrel.[21]

The first game between North Florida and Jacksonville was played on November 23, 2004 when JU defeated UNF, a Division II program, 78–73.[22] The Ospreys' first win over their crosstown rival came on January 25, 2006 by a score of 90–78.[23] The series record was 8–1 in favor of JU through the 2008–09 season, when UNF completed their transition to Division I.

After beginning their Division I era 0–5 against the Dolphins, UNF finally defeated JU in the 2011 A-Sun Tournament quarterfinals in one of the young program's most significant wins.[12][24] Since then, the Ospreys have held the edge, bringing the all-time series record to 15–8 in favor of JU after the 2014–15 regular season. However, the series is tied 7–7 since UNF became a full Division I member.[25]

Year-by-year results[edit]

Season Coach Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Independent (NAIA) (1992–1993)
1992–93 Rich Zvosec 7–20
NAIA Total: 7–20
Sunshine State Conference (Division II) (1993–1997)
1993–94 Rich Zvosec 15–13 5–9 T-6th
1994–95 Rich Zvosec 10–17 2–12 8th
1995–96 Rich Zvosec 14–15 6–9 6th
1996–97 Rich Zvosec 8–19 2–12 7th
Sunshine State Total: 47–64 15–42
Peach Belt Conference (Division II) (1997–2005)
1997–98 Sidney Green 8–17 4–12 T-5th
1998–99 Sidney Green 12–16 8–8 4th
1999–00 Matt Kilcullen 9–17 4–12 6th
2000–01 Matt Kilcullen 14–13 8–8 2nd
2001–02 Matt Kilcullen 13–14 10–9 4th
2002–03 Matt Kilcullen 15–14 11–8 4th
2003–04 Matt Kilcullen 13–15 5–11 4th
2004–05 Matt Kilcullen 14–17 9–7 4th
Peach Belt Total: 98–123 59–75
Atlantic Sun Conference (Division I) (2005–present)
2005–06 Matt Kilcullen 6–22 3–17 10th
2006–07 Matt Kilcullen 3–26 1–17 10th
2007–08 Matt Kilcullen 3–26 3–15 12th
2008–09 Matt Kilcullen 8–22 6–14 11th
2009–10 Matthew Driscoll 13–18 8–12 7th
2010–11 Matthew Driscoll 15–19 10–10 6th
2011–12 Matthew Driscoll 16–16 10–8 T-4th
2012–13 Matthew Driscoll 13–19 8–10 T-7th
2013–14 Matthew Driscoll 16–16 10–8 T-4th
2014–15 Matthew Driscoll 23–12 12–2 1st NCAA First Four
Atlantic Sun Total: 93–185 57–111
Total: 245–392

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

NCAA Division I tournament results[edit]

The Ospreys earned their first invitation to the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament in 2015 as a #16 seed in the south region. They lost to Robert Morris giving them a tournament record of 0–1.

Year Seed Round Opponent Location Result/Score
2015 #16 First Four #16 Robert Morris Dayton, OH L 77–81

Conference tournament results[edit]

In six appearances in the Atlantic Sun Men's Basketball Tournament, the Ospreys are 5–5. They won their first Atlantic Sun Tournament championship in 2015.

Year Seed Round Opponent Location Result/Score
2010 #7 Quarterfinals #2 Jacksonville Macon, GA L 69–76
2011 #6 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Championship
#3 Jacksonville
#2 East Tennessee State
#1 Belmont
W 68–64
W 59–55
L 46–87
2012 #5 Quarterfinals #4 East Tennessee State L 66–68
2013 #7 Quarterfinals #2 Florida Gulf Coast L 63–73
2014 #6 Quarterfinals #3 USC Upstate Spartanburg, SC L 74–80
2015 #1 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Championship
#8 Stetson
#5 Lipscomb
#3 USC Upstate
Jacksonville, FL W 81–67
W 71–57
W 63–57

Conference championships[edit]

The Ospreys won the Atlantic Sun regular season championship for the first time in the 2014–15 season.

Season Coach Overall record Conf. record
2014–15 Matthew Driscoll 21–11 12–2

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. p. 1. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  2. ^ "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. p. 19. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b Michael DiRocco (June 11, 1997). "UNF's Zvosec bound for Pennsylvania school". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  4. ^ "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. p. 76. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "North Florida: 2011–12 men's basketball quick facts" (PDF). unfospreys.com. University of North Florida. 2011. Retrieved November 2, 2011. 
  6. ^ Gene Frenette (July 3, 1997). "Doubters motivation for Green". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  7. ^ "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. p. 77. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  8. ^ Michael DiRocco (April 14, 1999). "Kilcullen returns". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  9. ^ a b Jeff Elliott (March 16, 2009). "Kilcullen moves to new role at UNF". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  10. ^ "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. pp. 78–79. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  11. ^ "North Florida 2011–2012 Basketball Media Guide" (PDF). UNF Ospreys. p. 79. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  12. ^ a b Gene Frenette (March 3, 2011). "UNF basketball takes huge step in finally beating Dolphins". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  13. ^ Jeff Elliott (March 5, 2011). "UNF men one upset from Big Dance after victory over East Tennessee State". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  14. ^ Gene Frennette (March 5, 2011). "Gene Frenette: UNF needs more horses to hang with Belmont". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  15. ^ J. E. Miller (October 21, 2011). "Matthew Driscoll: UNF Head Basketball Coach". milleronsports.com. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  16. ^ Washburn, Jeff. "North Florida rallies past Purdue 73-70". Associated Press. Retrieved 12 December 2014. 
  17. ^ "UNF Arena". unf.edu. University of North Florida. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  18. ^ "UNF announces plans for Varsity Village". unfospresy.com. University of North Florida. September 2, 2008. Retrieved November 2, 2011. 
  19. ^ "The University of North Florida begins a $30 million fundraising campaign". The Jacksonville Business Journal. September 22, 2008. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  20. ^ Gene Frennette (January 27, 2011). "Gene Frenette: Coaches Matthew Driscoll, Cliff Warren elevate UNF-JU rivalry". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Suntrust River City Rumble". unfospreys.com. University of North Florida. Retrieved November 2, 2011. 
  22. ^ "2004-05 Jacksonville Dolphins Schedule and Results". Sports Reference. Retrieved 7 February 2015. 
  23. ^ "2005-06 Jacksonville Dolphins Schedule and Results". Sports Reference. 
  24. ^ Jeff Elliott (March 3, 2011). "UNF beats JU in Atlantic Sun Tournament". The Florida Times-Union. Retrieved December 16, 2011. 
  25. ^ "North Florida Ospreys Head-to-Head Results". Sports Reference. Retrieved 7 February 2015.