What UVA Basketball fans need to know about Wake Forest

wake forestWake Forest finds itself pretty much just stuck with Danny Manning, after giving him a six-year extension following his one half-good season, in 2017, that has him under contract through 2025.

Three of Manning’s five full seasons have ended with Wake at 11-20; a fourth had the Deacs at 13-19.

The one good season was a 19-14 team that ended with an NCAA Tournament bid and loss in the First Four.

But, hey, that was the first Big Dance invite for the program since the end of the Dino Gaudio era in 2010, so it probably felt like things were moving in the right direction.

They’re not, and that’s a surprise.

Manning was a popular hire in 2015, after a long stint as an assistant at Kansas, his alma mater, and a two-year run at Tulsa as the head coach that included an NCAA Tournament appearance.

You would have assumed Manning, with that pedigree, and then, oh, yeah, he was a pretty good baller in his own right, and dude is 6’11”, so can you say, commanding presence in a recruit’s living room talking with mom and dad?


No. Hasn’t worked out.

The 2019-2020 Demon Deacons (9-9, 2-6 ACC) have some nice wins: Xavier, at Pitt.

I want to say they’re playing better of late, hanging around late in a 10-point loss to Florida State, a nice 18-point home win over Boston College, a three-point loss at Clemson earlier this week.


Brandon Childress is a familiar name and face. The 6’0” senior point guard is the leading scorer (15.2 points per game) and leads the team in assists (4.7 per game).

Childress isn’t a classic attacking point guard: 45.1 percent of his shots are threes, per Hoop-Math.com, and he shoots a modest 32.2 percent from long-range.

I say that, but then, Childress does seem to get to the line a fair amount (5.3 attempts per game).

Still no word on the status of his backcourt-mate, 6’5” junior Chaundee Brown (13.3 ppg, 6.5 rebs/g, 46.2% FG, 34.6% 3FG), who has been out of the lineup of late with an unspecified lower-leg injury.

His minutes have been going to 6’3” senior Andrien White (8.8 ppg, 41.1% FG, 40.0% 3FG), who had 22 points on 7-of-15 shooting in the loss at Clemson on Tuesday.

The lineup has a 7-footer who is a force in the paint in junior Olivier Sarr (13.0 ppg, 9.5 rebs/g, 53.0% FG).

Sarr’s shot profile shows him with 48.5 percent of his shots coming at the rim, and he converts on 65.6 percent of those shots.

Sarr also gets to the line: averaging 6.0 free-throw attempts per game, and shooting a nice 78.4 percent at the line.

The rest of the rotation:

  • 6’8” freshman Isaiah Mucius (6.4 ppg, 4.3 rebs/g, 37.3% FG, 27.6% 3FG)
  • 6’3” senior Torry Johnson (6.2 ppg, 37.5% FG, 27.3% 3FG)
  • 6’8” freshman Ismael Massoud (4.7 ppg, 37.5% FG, 37.5% 3FG)
  • 6’3” freshman Jahcobi Neath (4.2 ppg, 41.3% FG, 45.5% 3FG)
  • 6’9” freshman Ody Oguama (3.1 ppg, 61.3% FG)

How Virginia matches up

Manning likes to go big: going three-guard, two-forward almost exclusively, which should allow UVA coach Tony Bennett to go with his preferred frontcourt lineup of 6’9” Mamadi Diakite (13.1 ppg, 6.8 rebs/g, 46.2% FG, 37.1% 3FG) and 7’1” Jay Huff (9.0 ppg, 6.1 rebs/g, 59.5% FG, 30.8% 3FG) with 7’0” Francisco Caffaro (1.9 ppg, 63.6% FG) getting bench minutes for the bulk of the day on Sunday.

Braxton Key, at 6’8”, probably creates a tough defensive matchup for Wake at the three, considering the minutes of late at the three have been going to White and Neath, both 6’3” guys.

Key (10.2 ppg, 7.2 rebs/g, 46.2% FG) is getting 47.0 percent of his shots at the rim this season, and converts on 67.7 percent of those opportunities.

Look for Key to have a chance to go off a bit in this one, and force Manning’s hand in terms of his rotation, that or try some zone to take away the paint.

In fact, the more I look at it, Manning almost has to have some zone ready, though I say that and wonder why everybody doesn’t just zone this Virginia team, which is shooting a pathetic 26.7 percent from three this season, eighth-worst in the nation.

A reason you don’t see it more might be that going zone concedes tempo to a UVA team that is already the slowest team in D1, averaging 59.2 possessions per game, 1.7 fewer per contest than the next slowest team, per KenPom.com.

(One guess who that is … time’s up. Liberty. Ritchie McKay.)

Wake likes to get up and down the court: averaging 70.2 possessions per game.

They won’t get anywhere near that on Sunday, as you know.

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press news

UVA Basketball Fans!

uva basketball team of destiny
Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25. The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe, and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018 through to the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

Dick Vitale on Team of Destiny: “This is a hoops story you will LOVE! Jerry and Chris capture the sensational and dramatic championship journey by Tony Bennett and his tenacious Cavalier team. UVA was Awesome Baby and so is this book!”

Ralph Sampson on Team of Destiny: “Jerry and Chris have lived and seen it all, even before my time. I highly recommend this book to every basketball fan across the globe. This story translates to all who know defeat and how to overcome it!”

Buy here.

AFP Business

As professional consultants, Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including website design, SEO, TV/radio, video work, branding and logos, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation. Augusta Free Press LLC was founded in 2002.

Web Design

Augusta Free Press has designed more than 800 websites for clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design, content development and SEO. Short on staff? We’ll work with you to update your AFP-designed website in a timely manner or train your staff to make changes.

Marketing/Social Media Management

Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.

Graphic Design

Augusta Free Press will help you take your vision to the next level. From branding and logos to print materials, our team will work with you to develop products to showcase your business. From brochures and rack cards to full-color magazines or print/digital ads, we’ve got you covered.

Event Planning/Fundraising

Augusta Free Press will help you plan the best event for your organization. From an open house or anniversary to a 5K or Pay Per View, we can handle it all. Looking for training for your sales staff? We can help energize your employees or board. Need ideas to raise more money? Let us help you plan a successful event. Want to hold a news conference or need help with a press release? We can do that too.

Click here for more.