Following an amazing career at UCF, leading the Knights to their first NCAA Tournament victory in program history, Tacko Fall is set to begin the next chapter of his story. The 7-foot-6 center has signed a free agent contract with the Boston Celtics, announced Friday evening.
The 2017 American Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year, a 2017 Defensive All-American, and a 2019 All-Conference honoree in The American, Fall left his mark on UCF. The 7-foot-6 center left as the program’s all-time leader in blocked shots (280) and field goal percentage (.740).
His career field goal percentage of 74.0 percent (497-for-672) set a new NCAA Division I record and he holds the top four single-season field goal percentage marks in UCF history.
Fall’s 343 rebounds in 2016-17 were the most in single season in UCF’s Division I history and his 887 career boards rank third all-time.
A four-year starter, Fall helped lead UCF back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2005 this past season, averaging 11.1 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. His 13-point, 18-rebound, 5-block performance propelled the Knights past VCU for the program’s first win in the tournament.
UCF’s Aubrey Dawkins is set to begin his professional career after signing a free agent deal with the New Orleans Pelicans shortly after the 2019 NBA Draft ended early Friday morning.
Dawkins made his mark in just one season on the court for UCF. The guard was named Second Team All-Conference in The American after averaging 15.6 points per game in 2018-19. Dawkins also grabbed 5.0 rebounds per game and totaled 34 steals on the season.
After sitting out a year due to transfer rules after coming over from Michigan, Dawkins missed a second year due to a shoulder injury before finally hitting the court for the Knights. He was relied upon time and time again to knock down shots, leading UCF with a 40.0 three-point percentage on 73 makes from beyond the arc.
Dawkins’ biggest moment came on the biggest stage, a 32-point blistering of no. 1 Duke in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament. He went 12-for-18 from the floor, 5-for-7 from three-point range, dished out four assists and had three steals, as the Knights narrowly missed out on upsetting the Blue Devils.
He’s now set to start camp with former Blue Devil Zion Williamson, who went number one overall in Thursday’s draft. The Pelicans also picked up Jaxson Hayes out of Texas and Nickeil Alexander-Walker of Virginia Tech in the first round.
There’s no place like home. UCF’s BJ Taylor, who grew up in Orlando, played at nearby Boone High School, and starred for the Knights for five years, has agreed to play in the NBA Summer League for his favorite team, the Orlando Magic.
Taylor did it all for UCF in his five seasons in the black and gold. Leading the Knights from his first day on campus, he also led the team in scoring each of the four years he played on the court. Taylor left UCF seventh in program history with 1,618 career points, the fourth most in the D1 era.
A master at getting to the line, Taylor is tied with Bo Clark for the all-time UCF record with 456 career free throws made. He’s also sixth in three-point field goals made (180) and sixth in career assists (324).
As a senior in 2018-19, he was named First Team All-Conference in the American Athletic Conference after averaging 15.9 points per game, scoring in double figures 29 times and setting a new UCF single-season record with 187 made free throws.
Taylor helped lead the Knights back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2005 and their first win in the NCAA Tournament, a 73-58 first round victory over VCU.
He now gets started with the team he grew up watching. Taylor has always been an Orlando Magic fan, admiring Tracy McGrady to the point of choosing the number one for his jersey.
Another member of UCF’s 2018-19 men’s basketball team has made a commitment to join a team for the NBA Summer League, as Chad Brown announced he’d be joining the Orlando Magic this summer following Thursday’s draft.
Brown was a ball of energy for the Knights in his four years on the court, playing many roles throughout his time. The Deltona native finished his career ranked seventh in program history with 97 career blocked shots.
As a senior he helped lead UCF to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2005 and the program’s first NCAA Tournament game victory. He ranked ninth in the American Athletic Conference with 1.0 blocks per game off the bench.
He averaged 4.5 points and was third on the team with 5.0 rebounds per game, while shooting a career-best 52.3 percent from the field as a senior.
Brown will join teammate BJ Taylor on the Magic’s Summer League roster, while Tacko Fall and Aubrey Dawkins signed free agent deals with the Boston Celtics and New Orleans Pelicans, respectively.
The MGM Resorts NBA Summer League begins July 5 in Las Vegas. The Magic play on that first day at 11 p.m. against the San Antonio Spurs on NBA TV. The Pelicans get started on day one as well, taking on the Knicks at 9:30 p.m. on ESPN. Boston’s first game is against the 76ers on July 6 at 5:30 p.m. on ESPN.