Ferrell commons was the venue for the first UCF Knights student dunk contest, though what took place inside was decidedly uncommon. The new event, which was put on by the Campus Crusade for Christ with help from the Rowdy Knights, gave witness to UCF’s finest student-dunkers and was judged by the university’s supreme ‘ballers,’ the UCF mens basketball team.
Amateur dunkers soared through the air in a two round slam-dunk contest with each dunk scored on a one to ten scale by the knight basketball stars.
Mike O’Donnell, a former standout UCF basketball player, emceed the event. His familiarity with the basketball team and the Speraw family added a new wrinkle to the contest. O’Donnell first challenged coach’s son Dustin Speraw, whom he called the worst dunker on the team, to jump over Mike’s wallet while dunking. O’Donnell later challenged the coach himself, Kirk Speraw, to complete a dunk, which he was able to do while earning applause from both the fans and his players.
The students participating in the competition put on an impressive and entertaining show in the contests’ main event. One student pulled a spectator out of the crowd and jumped over her to complete his dunk. Another student received an alley-oop pass from starting point guard A.J. Rompza, and a different participant tried his luck in dunking over 7’4’’ UCF center Jakub Kusmieruk.
Not all interactions with the team were favorable, however, as freshman power forward Keith Clanton snuck up and swatted away a contestants attempted jam.
The event was the brainchild of Marc-Steve Cerniglia, a member of the Campus Crusade for Christ, who have weekly events called One80 to bring students together. In the end the winners were:
3rd- Michel Westberry (50 dollar prize)
2nd- Devontee Lynch (75 dollar prize)
1st- Evan Lowe and Peter Calixte (Each received a 100 dollar prize)