Inside the Numbers: Dammit, stop apologizing for this Virginia team
We’re like Canadians, going around, always telling people, sorry, we’re Virginia Basketball people.
Sorry, we only win games 50-something to 50-something.
Sorry. Sorry! Sorry!!!
This team is 6-3 on the road in the ACC.
Among Power 5 conference teams: that’s fourth-best.
(Top three: Kansas, Kentucky, Duke.)
Two of the losses: at Florida State, at Louisville, both Top 10 teams, both in games in which Virginia led late.
Seven losses this season, only one of them, that loss at Purdue, way back in December, was out of reach.
Granted, even the wins aren’t pretty.
Virginia is 211th nationally in adjusted offensive efficiency, per KenPom.com, still averaging less than a point (precisely .999) per possession on offense.
The defense: first in scoring, fourth nationally in points per possession.
They’re all rock fights.
This team: has stones.
In the recent five-game winning streak:
- 50-49 OT win over Notre Dame, in which the final tally in OT was Virginia 3, Notre Dame 2. For sake of comparison, Duke had four points in the second OT of its loss to Wake Forest last night. And gave up 16. Virginia won a game scoring less in OT than Duke got in OT in the process of getting the s–t kicked out of it.
- 64-62 win at North Carolina, on a last-second three from Tomas Woldetensae.
- 78-65 win over Boston College, a relative blowout. Literally only the second double-digit win since the exam break. We are all going to age several years this winter.
- 59-56 win at Pitt. Led by 13 inside of four minutes to go. Had to hang on.
- 56-53 win at Virginia Tech. Led by 15 at the break, had to rally from three down inside of three to go. We picked the wrong week to collectively stop sniffing glue.
This team has 20 wins, 12 in the ACC, eight away from JPJ, after losing three guys early to the NBA draft.
We could easily be North Carolina right now, 4-13 in the conference, our coach cursing at pressers, when he isn’t telling reporters about how his team has no talent.
This team could legitimately win out and finish … third in the ACC?
It’s an election year. I’m voting for Tony Bennett for everything.
Story by Chris Graham