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All You Need to Know About Virginia

The Team Preview

What's Changed Since Then: An unproductive frontcourt has just been getting thinner. Ryan Pettinella is out at least three weeks with a dislocated knee. That leaves only six players averaging more than twelve minutes a game - and with most of the talent weighted in guards Sean Singletary and J.R. Reynolds, results in a hot and cold team that can beat Gonzaga (remember them?) but drop back-to-back games to Appalachian State and Utah. So what kind of team is going to show up in Chapel Hill?

Unsurprisingly with their guard play, Virginia is a perimeter-oriented team. They launch a higher percentage of threes than any team in the ACC save Clemson:

Team           3FGA/FGA
Clemson          0.401
Virginia         0.363
Georgia Tech     0.334
Miami            0.333
Florida State    0.313
Wake Forest      0.308
Virginia Tech    0.289
NC State         0.274
North Carolina   0.265
Maryland         0.263
Boston College   0.260
Duke             0.251
Their addiction to the longball doesn't bring with it most of the typical consequences. Sure, there's a low turnover rate (2nd best in the ACC), but UVA gets a surprisingly high percentage of offensive rebounds (5th in the ACC) and go to the line more than any other team in the ACC (Yes, even Duke):
Team            FTA/FGA
Virginia         0.485
Wake Forest      0.468
Duke             0.432
Virginia Tech    0.427
North Carolina   0.407
Boston College   0.399
Georgia Tech     0.387
Maryland         0.383
Miami            0.352
NC State         0.343
Florida State    0.314
Clemson          0.301
They're pretty decent from the charity stripe as well, leading the nation in free throws made per field goal attempts.

The bottom line is, this is the type of team for which UNC spent December turning up their perimeter defense. They shouldn't have a problem with the Cavaliers, who are pretty lax on the defensive end, with the size to control the boards and a fast-paced offense with the depth to back it up. Keep Singletary and Reynolds from having career nights, and it should be an easy time for the Heels.