What UVA Basketball fans need to know about William & Mary

William & MaryWilliam & Mary is coming off a 21-win season and second-place CAA finish in 2019-2020, but the outlook for 2020-2021 was … not that good.

Which is what can happen when you lose a guy like Nathan Knight, a 6’10” center who averaged 20.7 points and 10.5 rebounds per game for the Tribe last season, and is now on a two-way contract with the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks.

Second-year coach Dane Fischer also lost 7’0” senior Andy Van Vliet (13.2 ppg, 8.7 rebs/g) and high-motor point guard Bryce Barnes (8.3 ppg, 3.4 assists/g) from last year’s group.

Looking at that, the CAA’s coaches, media relations directors and media voted W&M to finish at the bottom of the 10-team conference this season.

The Tribe has been impacted, like so many others, by COVID-19, taking a two-week break after an 86-78 loss to ODU in its season opener on Nov. 28.

William & Mary returned with a nice 85-84 OT win at George Washington on Dec. 14, then won at Hampton, 75-58, on Dec. 16.

Last night was the first appearance, you could say, of the W&M team that the folks who voted them last in the CAA had expected – a 71-49 loss to High Point, which had come in with a 1-4 record, the lone win being over KenPom.com 295 North Florida.

Inside the Tribe

You game plan around making 6’4” senior Luke Loewe work to get his shots. Loewe is averaging 18.3 points per game, shooting 54.2 percent from the floor and 50 percent from three, on four long-range attempts per game, and a team-best 1.161 points per possession.

6’1” freshman point guard Yuri Covington averages 12.8 points per game, but man, has he been sloppy – averaging a ghastly 4.8 turnovers per game.

Covington does touch the paint with regularity – 66 percent of his shots are at the rim.

That he averages just 2.5 assists per game suggests that he hasn’t yet learned the art of penetrate and dish.

It will come.

Two other guys average double-digits in points: 6’5” freshman Connor Kochera (10.7 ppg, 9-of-14 from three in three games) and 6’7” junior Quinn Blair (10 ppg, 7.3 rebs/g).

KenPom.com numbers

  • Offense: .979 points per possession (219/357)
  • Defense:080 points per possession (330/357)
  • Tempo:5 possessions (295/357)

The skinny

  • BartTorvik.com: UVA 73-50, 99% win probability
  • ESPN BPI: UVA +21.7, 98.3% win probability

Story by Chris Graham


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