Washington Hosts North Florida for Friday Night Hoops
SEATTLE – Washington aims for win number two of the 2022-23 season when the team returns to the hardwood at Alaska Airlines Arena on Friday night. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. as AJ Kanell and Elise Woodward have the call on Pac-12 Washington and Tony Castricone and Jason Hamilton will call the action on the Husky Sports Network, locally on Sports Radio KJR-AM 950.
The Huskies host North Florida in what will be the first meeting between the teams. It is also the second of four consecutive home games to start the season for the Dawgs. Washington is coming off of a 69-52 win over Weber State in the season opener while North Florida seeks its first win of the season after dropping the opener to Gonzaga.
- The Returners: Jamal Bey headlines the group as the leading returning scorer from a season ago and enters this season with 119 steals, just outside of the top-10 in program history. Cole Bajema and PJ Fuller II played in all 32 games in 2021-22 while Langston Wilson factored into 28. Jackson Grant played in 25 games freshman and now enters his sophomore season in the system.
- Experienced Transfers: The Huskies added four transfers from Division I schools -- Keion Brooks Jr. (Kentucky), Franck Kepnang (Oregon), Braxton Meah (Fresno State) and Noah Williams (Washington State) -- that bring with them 10 combined years of high-level playing experience. The foursome enters the year having played in 278 games (112 starts).
- Freshmen Additions: The Huskies added 6-7 forward Tyler Linhardt (Seattle, Wash./King's HS) and 6-2 guard Keyon Menifield Jr. (Mount Morris, Mich./Phoenix [Ariz.] Prep) to the roster for 2022-23. Lindhardt was the No. 1 rated player in the state of Washington and averaged 21.8 ppg, 12.3 rpg and 3.5 apg as a sophomore. Menifield played four years at Beecher HS in Flint, Mich. and was the Michigan Division 3 Player of the Year in 2021 after averaging 26.0 ppg, 9.3 apg, 6.6 spg and 4.7 rpg.
- Head Coach Mike Hopkins (89-80 at UW/6th season): Hopkins is a two-time Pac-12 Coach of the Year, winning the honor in each of his first two seasons with the Huskies as he led UW to back-to-back 20 win seasons with postseason appearances each year, including the NCAA Second Round in 2019. Hopkins has coached four McDonald's All-Americans and has mentored five players that have been selected in the first round of the NBA Draft. During his 22 years as an assistant at Syracuse, Hopkins was a part of teams that reached the NCAA Tournament 16 times including the 2003 National Championship team, four Final Four teams, five Elite Eights and ten Sweet 16s.