We take a look at five must know facts about the Virginia Cavaliers before they play the Louisville basketball team on Wednesday.
The Louisville basketball team will be looking to get their second huge win in-a-row after taking down Kentucky last Wednesday night. Like every game, this match-up presents a very different challenge than the previous team.
Virginia has given the Cards trouble in the past and are still one of the best teams in America.
With that being said, let’s take a look at five must know facts about Virginia:
Dec 6, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Virginia Cavaliers head coach Tony Bennett huddles with his team during a stoppage in play in the second half against the East Carolina Pirates at John Paul Jones Arena. The Cavalier won 76-53. Mandatory Credit: Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports
5. They are 14th In The ACC In Points Scored Per Game
Virginia doesn’t play a style of basketball that is going to bring in a lot of TV ratings. The Cavaliers aren’t a team that is going to run up the floor and shoot transition threes. They are going to play at their own pace and force the other team to slow down.
The good news is that the Cards are actually averaging nine more points per game than Virginia. However, the bad news is that the Cavaliers don’t need to score very much to win basketball games.
This is definitely a game that will finish around the 50’s or 60’s. It’s not going to be an easy game to watch, but Louisville has all of the tools to take down another great opponent in the Yum Center on Wednesday night.
Dec 6, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Virginia Cavaliers guard Devon Hall (0) dribbles the ball as East Carolina Pirates guard Kentrell Barkley (15) defends during the second half at John Paul Jones Arena. The Cavalier won 76-53. Mandatory Credit: Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports
4. They Lead The ACC In Scoring Margin Per Game
There are a couple of reasons why Virginia is one of the best teams in the conference in scoring margin. One, they haven’t played much of a schedule so far and two, their defense is stellar every single game.
With that being said, if a team is down by ten to the Cavaliers, then they might as well be down by 20. Virginia moves at such a slow pace on offense and play extremely tight defense that there is zero room for error against these guys.
Louisville has to build a lead early on Virginia or they could be playing from behind in a game that could last all week.
In all seriousness, these guys from Virginia are the real deal and they will stick it to the Cards if they aren’t ready to roll.
Nov 30, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Virginia Cavaliers forward Isaiah Wilkins (21) celebrates with Cavaliers guard Marial Shayok (4) after their game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at John Paul Jones Arena. The Cavaliers won 63-61. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
3. They are 2nd in the ACC In Field Goal Percentage Offense
Virginia may move at a slow pace on offense and be one of the worst teams in the conference in scoring per game, but they are extremely efficient. They take a ton of high-percentage shots throughout games that give them the best opportunity to score.
The Cavaliers are very disciplined on both side of the floor, but you will not see them taking too many contested shots during a game.
They are unselfish, great passers, and all-around solid basketball players. These kids don’t need a spotlight to perform at a high level, therefore the crowd noise will not affect their shooting or passing whatsoever in the Yum Center.
Expect Virginia to get many good looks at the basket against the Cards on Wednesday night.
Nov 15, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Virginia Cavaliers guard London Perrantes (32) knocks the ball away from St. Francis Brooklyn Terriers guard Glenn Sanabria (10) during the second half at John Paul Jones Arena. The Cavaliers won 72-32. Mandatory Credit: Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports
2. They Lead The ACC In Field Goal Percentage Defense
Every season when Louisville has to play Virginia, we all know that scoring is going to come at a minimum. The Cards already struggle to score sometimes, but a Cavaliers team might make scoring that much harder for Louisville on Wednesday night.
Here are the teams that have scored the most points against Virginia this season:
West Virginia: 66
Ohio State: 61
East Carolina: 53
The good news is that Virginia has struggled the most against teams like Ohio State and West Virginia. I would put Louisville basketball up against those schools any day of the week.
Who knows, maybe Quentin Snider will come out hot against the Cavs this week.
Nov 30, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes guard JaQuan Lyle (13) drives to the basket as Virginia Cavaliers guard London Perrantes (32) defends in the first half at John Paul Jones Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
1. They Are Only Allowing 47.2 Points Per Game
These guys from Virginia play great defense every season, but they are truly shutting teams down in 2016. The are currently first in the conference in points allowed per game with 47.2. It doesn’t matter who they’re playing, that’s just simply ridiculous.
Earlier in the season, they played St. Francis Brooklyn and Yale back to back. While those aren’t two great basketball teams, they both schools didn’t even score 40 points on the Cavaliers. Brooklyn only scored 32 and Yale only scored 38.
With that being said, this game against Virginia is going to be a battle of two, great defensive basketball teams.
However, I would guess that the Cards will put up more than 47 points on Wednesday night. Well, at least I sure do hope so.