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Previewing Virginia

Scouting Report

Virginia Offense 05-06Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%48.2213Turnover Rate21.8179Off Reb Rate38.527FTM/FGA28.468
By far, the biggest difference in Virginia's offense between 2005 and 2006 is its ability to offensive rebound. Last season, UVA had an OR Rate that ranked last in the ACC and 270th in the nation. They've gone from grabbing 28.3% of available misses to 38.5%, which is incredible. The good news--not that this necessarily means anything for Wednesday--is the Wolfpack has already faced four conference foes that are better offensive rebounding teams than Virginia. So the Wolfpack has seen plenty of this before.

UVA's .482 effective field goal percentage is the worst in the ACC, and the Cavs are shooting only 45.3% in conference play. Of course, Clemson is hitting at a similarly poor rate (45.7%) in ACC play and the Tigers still managed to shoot 50% against the Wolfpack.

Probable Starters:

Sean Singletary (6-0, 174) -- Doing an admirable job carrying a huge load. I don't think NC State has anyone who can match his quickness, so what was a problem last year could be an issue again this season. At least State has Cedric Simmons in the middle this time. Singletary's shooting is down a bit in conference play (eFG% = .464), but he's still averaging better than 20 points/40 min.

JR Reynolds (6-2.5, 197) -- Reynolds's O Rtg in ACC games is 97, and his usage is up slightly. Both he and Singletary boast decent turnover rates considering how much they handle the ball.

Adrian Joseph (6-7, 195) -- Shoots threes at the same rate as Singletary and Reynolds and is just as effective. He has a nice O Rtg of 115 in conference play, but that's with a usage of just 15.2%.

Jason Cain (6-10, 212) -- Oddly enough, Cain has become one of my favorite ACC players. As you can tell from the scouting report, he's been a big factor in Virginia's improved offensive rebounding. Only a handful of guys are grabbing offensive boards at a higher rate.

Tunji Soroye (6-11, 212) -- Total non-factor at the offensive end (see %Poss and %Shots in scouting report). Solid shot blocker.


Mamadi Diane (6-5, 185), Laurynas Mikalauskas (6-8, 241) and TJ Bannister (5-10.5, 176) comprise the significant part of Virginia's bench (a couple of other guys could make cameos). Mikalauskas and Diane have been getting about 20 min/g in conference, while Bannister's down around 13 min/g.

Of the three, Diane is the most involved offensively, though he sports an awful eFG%.

In conference play, Mikalauskas has been rebounding as well as Cain has.

Virginia Defense 05-06Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%46.460Turnover Rate19.5278Off Reb Rate31.5135FTA/FGA29.958
After the Clemson game, it's nice to be playing a team that won't force a lot of turnovers. They're doing a pretty good job of keeping teams off of the free throw line, though Mikalauskas and Soroye average over 5.5 fouls/40 min in ACC games.

Dave Leitao deserves some credit for improving Virginia's defense. The Cavs rank 48th in adjusted defensive efficiency, and while that's not great, it is a noticeable improvement from 2005 and it puts Virginia in the top half of the ACC.